Parafoveal magnification: visual acuity does not modulate the perceptual span in reading

Miellet, S., O'Donnell, P.J. and Sereno, S.C. (2009) Parafoveal magnification: visual acuity does not modulate the perceptual span in reading. Psychological Science, 20(6), pp. 721-728. (doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02364.x)

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Abstract

Models of eye guidance in reading rely on the concept of the perceptual span the amount of information perceived during a single eye fixation, considered a consequence of visual and attentional constraints. To directly investigate attentional mechanisms underlying the perceptual span, we implement a new reading paradigm parafoveal magnification (PM) that compensates for how visual acuity drops off as a function of retinal eccentricity. On each fixation and in real time, parafoveal text is magnified to equalize its perceptual impact with concurrent foveal text. Experiment 1 demonstrates that PM does not increase the amount of text that is processed, supporting an attentional-based account of making eye movements in reading. Experiment 2 tests a contentious issue within competing models of eye movement control and shows that, even when parafoveal information is enlarged, visual attention is allocated in a serial fashion from word to word in reading.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Sereno, Dr Sara and O'Donnell, Professor Patrick and Miellet, Dr Sebastien
Authors: Miellet, S., O'Donnell, P.J., and Sereno, S.C.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Psychology
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology
Journal Name:Psychological Science
Journal Abbr.:Psychol. Sci.
ISSN:0956-7976
ISSN (Online):1467-9280

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
436851Parafoveal magnification - a new paradigm for reading researchSara SerenoEconomic & Social Research Council (ESRC)ES/E005756/1INP - CENTRE FOR COGNITIVE NEUROIMAGING