Reading new words in context: investigating orthographic learning using fixation-related potentials

    Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


    The repeated reading of a novel word typically leads to an increased recognition of its written form. This process - which can be called orthographic learning - often occurs while reading paragraphs of text. Most neuroscientific techniques cannot measure brain responses to novel words in paragraphs because it is not clear when a reader is looking at the novel word of interest within a paragraph. To avoid this problem, the current study used an eye-tracker in combination with EEG recordings to measure fixation-related potentials (FRPs) to novel words (pseudonames) and real words (high frequency names) within paragraphs of text. The novel words and real words were presented four times within each paragraph. The novel words elicited a different pattern of brain activity compared to real words when read for the first time over the left posterior-parietal region. This difference was no longer evident by the fourth exposure. Further, a linear attenuation of early occipital peaks in response to repeated reading of both the real names and pseudonames was also found. The relationship between orthographic familiarity and attention will be discussed in light of the results, as well as the relationship between eye-movements and electrophysiology.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)229
    Number of pages1
    JournalClinical EEG and neuroscience
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2012
    EventAustralasian Cognitive Neurosciences Conference (21st : 2011) - Sydney
    Duration: 9 Dec 201112 Dec 2011


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