Effects of text segmentation on silent reading of Chinese regulated poems: evidence from eye movements

Qingrong, C., Wentao, G. and Scheepers, C. (2016) Effects of text segmentation on silent reading of Chinese regulated poems: evidence from eye movements. Journal of Chinese Linguistics, 44(2), pp. 265-286. (doi: 10.1353/jcl.2016.0011)

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Interword spaces have been reported to play an important role in silent reading of alphabetic languages. However, it has not yet been clear whether text spacing/segmentation facilitates the cognitive process in silent reading of Chinese, a logographic language, especially in reading Chinese regulated poems which have predefined rhythmic structures. An eye-tracking experiment was conducted to monitor eye movements of native participants in reading Chinese regulated poems in four segmenting conditions: normal text, character segmentation, rhythmic [End Page 265] segmentation, and syntactic segmentation. By comparing a set of measures of eye movements, both global and local analyses showed that syntactic segmentation boosted reading efficiency, while rhythmic segmentation did not. The findings demonstrate that not rhythmic but syntactic structure plays major roles in the cognitive process in reading Chinese regulated poems, suggesting an intrinsic difference in the information structure between spoken and written languages.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This work is supported jointly by the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2014M560433), the Postdoctoral Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (1401061B), the National Social Science Fund of China (10CYY009 and 13&ZD189). An earlier version of the paper was reported at the Fourth International Symposium on Tonal Aspects of Languages in Nijmegen, The Netherlands in 2014.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Scheepers, Dr Christoph
Authors: Qingrong, C., Wentao, G., and Scheepers, C.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Journal of Chinese Linguistics
Publisher:The Chinese University of Hong Kong Press
ISSN (Online):2411-3484
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 Journal of Chinese Linguistics

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