Advances in psychology research : Volume 59 by Alexandra Columbus

By Alexandra Columbus

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It also argues against the conjecture that the lack of the effects is due to the fact that readers usually devote less time to sentence processing as compared with listeners. Readers do not become listeners’ equal when they receive all the information that listeners receive and devote as much time to the processing of the text as listeners do. This strengthens the supposition that readers – compared with listeners – encounter specific difficulties when attempting to construct and maintain spatial representations.

But how can one account for the various findings indicating that readers do process information properly under certain conditions? It is important to bear in mind that the Reading-Interference Hypothesis does not state that readers are totally unable to construct spatial representations but only that reading activity interferes with the construction of such representations. Readers experience a dualtask situation. One possibility to cope with the problem is to switch between the tasks (for a second possibility see the Conclusion section).

There were two versions of this location-shift sentence. , the main lobby of the opera house or the bus station in front of the opera house, respectively). The next sentence was a filler sentence, which was unrelated to the mentioned places. This was followed by the probe word. , coat). Thus, the object to be accessed either was relatively close to or farther away from the protagonist in the described world, depending on the version of the location-shift sentence. If participants had available a spatial representation of the described situation at the time of testing, then proberecognition latencies should be shorter in the spatially close condition compared with the far condition – in other words, a spatial-distance effect on probe-recognition latencies should occur.

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