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Hemispheric priming in a reading task

Coney, J.R. (1998) Hemispheric priming in a reading task. Brain and Language, 62 (1). pp. 34-50.

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Some theories of reading and of reading disorders assume that the right hemisphere plays an important role in reading. However, despite the evidence supporting the competence of the right hemisphere in recognizing isolate words, there is little direct evidence to support the claim that the right hemisphere is involved in the continuous reading of connected text. This study used a stationary window technique to present text passages in a continuous reading task. At intervals during the reading of the text, a lexical decision was required to a target projected to the left or right side of the visual field. On some trials, the target was primed by a semantic associate which appeared in the passage immediately prior to the presentation of the target. It was found that these associative primes facilitated responses to LVF and RVF targets to an equal degree. It was also found, in agreement with previous investigations, that overall RTs to LVF targets were longer than RTs to RVF targets. It is suggested that these results indicate that the right hemisphere is actively involved in the comprehension of text in normal reading. However, the right hemisphere may not acquire text information directly, but may instead receive most of its information following initial analysis and decoding by the left.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Psychology
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright: Academic Press
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