Date of Submission

Spring 2018

Academic Programs and Concentrations


Project Advisor 1

Justin Hulbert

Project Advisor 2

Frank Scalzo

Abstract/Artist's Statement

This study investigates the role of pronounceability in visual recognition of words and non-words under a mixed-case situation. Theoretically, two models that predict people’s reactions to words and non-words formed the basis for the current study: the process model (Besner & Johnston,1989) and the hybrid, holistically biased model (Allen, Wallace & Weber,1995). Based on different rationalizations, the two proposed models make different predictions about case alternation impacts on words and non-words. When a word is presented until participants provide a response, the process model predicts that a longer response time will be found in words than non-words under a mixed-case condition, whereas the hybrid, holistically biased model predicts the opposite result. However, the predictions made by the Allen group ignored the potential impact of phonology in word recognition processing. This study continues the research done by Allen, Wallace, and Weber (1995) by measuring the pronounceability in non-words stimuli to examine whether phonology would affect lexical decision task performance, ultimately showing that people identified words significantly faster than non-words under a mixed-case condition, which further confirmed the Allen group’s results. A significant interactive effect of word type and pronounceability is also found in this study. However, the results showed no significant effect of pronounceability on participants’ reaction times. Potential explanations of these results and future research directions for study are discussed.

Open Access Agreement

On-Campus only

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
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