Incidental detection of rhyming in silent reading

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In order to study the availability of phonological properties of a text being processed, an incidental detection of rhyming task was used. Subjects were presented • with what appeared to be two prose sentences, one of which contained six rhyming words. In Experiment 1, the subjects were asked to listen, read orally, or read silently. The rhymes were either graphemically similar or not, and the sentences were either presented in context or not. After the presentation, the subjects were questioned about whether they had noticed the rhyming. The overall percentage of subjects who noticed rhymes ranged from 6% at the worst condition to 87% at the best condition. Noticing rhymes was much poorer in silent reading. It was strongly affected by the presence of context and graphemical similarity, and this was true in all modes of presentation to the same degree. In Experiment 2, the possibility of a memory artefact was ruled out. A possible interpretation of the results is that phonological information is not highly critical for comprehending a text. The effect of graphemical similarity under auditory presentation indicates the important role of orthography in processing linguistic input of any source.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalEuropean Journal of Cognitive Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 1993

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Requests for reprints should be addressed to David Navon, Department of Psychology, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel. This study was supported in part by Grant no. 2505 from the U.S.-Israel Binational Science Foundation. It followed a project conducted by Nitzana Sagi as part of the requirement for her B.A. in Psychology at the University of Haifa. We are indebted to Irit Blovstein, Yael Hendel, Ilan Lukach and Liora Rimon for their help in collecting the data and to Chris Barry and several anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


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