Subtitles on the moving image: an overview of eye tracking studies

Jan-Louis Kruger, Agnieszka Szarkowska, Izabela Krejtz

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This article provides an overview of eye tracking studies on subtitling (also known as captioning), and makes recommendations for future cognitive research in the field of audiovisual translation (AVT). We find that most studies in the field that have been conducted to date fail to address the actual processing of verbal information contained in subtitles, and rather focus on the impact of subtitles on viewing behaviour. We also show how eye tracking can be utilised to measure not only the reading of subtitles, but also the impact of stylistic elements such as language usage and technical issues such as the presence of subtitles during shot changes on the cognitive processing of the audiovisual text as a whole. We support our overview with empirical evidence from various eye tracking studies conducted on a number of languages, language combinations, viewing contexts as well as different types of viewers/readers, such as hearing, hard of hearing and Deaf people.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-14
    Number of pages14
    JournalRefractory : a journal of entertainment media
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


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