Article

Binocular coordination during reading and non-reading tasks

School of Psychology, University of Southampton, Southampton, United Kingdom.
Psychological Bulletin (Impact Factor: 14.39). 10/2008; 134(5):742-63. DOI: 10.1037/a0012979
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The goal of this review is to evaluate the literature on binocular coordination during reading and non-reading tasks in adult, child, and dyslexic populations. The review begins with a description of the basic characteristics of eye movements during reading. Then, reading and non-reading studies investigating binocular coordination are evaluated. Areas of future research in the field are identified and discussed. Finally, some general conclusions are made regarding binocular coordination. The review demonstrates that findings from traditionally independent areas of research are largely consistent and complementary. Throughout the review, theoretical and methodological commonalities are identified and clarified in order to advance current understanding of this fundamental aspect of human visual processing.

Full-text

Available from: Julie A Kirkby, Jun 09, 2015
1 Follower
 · 
152 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In the past, most research on eye movements during reading involved a limited number of subjects reading sentences with specific experimental manipulations on target words. Such experiments usually only analyzed eye-movements measures on and around the target word. Recently, some researchers have started collecting larger data sets involving large and diverse groups of subjects reading large numbers of sentences, enabling them to consider a larger number of influences and study larger and more representative subject groups. In such corpus studies, most of the words in a sentence are analyzed. The complexity of the design of corpus studies and the many potentially uncontrolled influences in such studies pose new issues concerning the analysis methods and interpretability of the data. In particular, several corpus studies of reading have found an effect of successor word (n + 1) frequency on current word (n) fixation times, while studies employing experimental manipulations tend not to. The general interpretation of corpus studies suggests that readers obtain parafoveal lexical information from the upcoming word before they have finished identifying the current word, while the experimental manipulations shed doubt on this claim. In the present study, we combined a corpus analysis approach with an experimental manipulation (i.e., a parafoveal modification of the moving mask technique, Rayner & Bertera, 1979), so that, either (a) word n + 1, (b) word n + 2, (c) both words, or (d) neither word was masked. We found that denying preview for either or both parafoveal words increased average fixation times. Furthermore, we found successor effects similar to those reported in the corpus studies. Importantly, these successor effects were found even when the parafoveal word was masked, suggesting that apparent successor frequency effects may be due to causes that are unrelated to lexical parafoveal preprocessing. We discuss the implications of this finding both for parallel and serial accounts of word identification and for the interpretability of large correlational studies of word identification in reading in general.
    Journal of Memory and Language 04/2015; 79. DOI:10.1016/j.jml.2014.11.003 · 2.65 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Humans typically make use of both eyes during reading, which necessitates precise binocular coordination in order to achieve a unified perceptual representation of written text. A number of studies have explored the magnitude and effects of naturally occurring and induced horizontal fixation disparity during reading and non-reading tasks. However, the literature concerning the processing of disparities in different dimensions, particularly in the context of reading, is considerably limited. We therefore investigated vertical vergence in response to stereoscopically presented linguistic stimuli with varying levels of vertical offset. A lexical decision task was used to explore the ability of participants to fuse binocular image disparity in the vertical direction during word identification. Additionally, a lexical frequency manipulation explored the potential interplay between visual fusion processes and linguistic processes. Results indicated that no significant motor fusional responses were made in the vertical dimension (all p-values > .11), though that did not hinder successful lexical identification. In contrast, horizontal vergence movements were consistently observed on all fixations in the absence of a horizontal disparity manipulation. These findings add to the growing understanding of binocularity and its role in written language processing, and fit neatly with previous literature regarding binocular coordination in non-reading tasks.
    Vision Research 11/2014; 106. DOI:10.1016/j.visres.2014.10.034 · 2.38 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dyslexia is more than just difficulty with translating letters into sounds. Many dyslexics have problems with clearly seeing letters and their order. These difficulties may be caused by abnormal development of their visual “magnocellular” (M) nerve cells; these mediate the ability to rapidly identify letters and their order because they control visual guidance of attention and of eye fixations. Evidence for M cell impairment has been demonstrated at all levels of the visual system: in the retina, in the lateral geniculate nucleus, in the primary visual cortex and throughout the dorsal visuomotor “where” pathway forward from the visual cortex to the posterior parietal and prefrontal cortices. This abnormality destabilises visual perception; hence, its severity in individuals correlates with their reading deficit. Treatments that facilitate M function, such as viewing text through yellow or blue filters, can greatly increase reading progress in children with visual reading problems. M weakness may be caused by genetic vulnerability, which can disturb orderly migration of cortical neurones during development or possibly reduce uptake of omega-3 fatty acids, which are usually obtained from fish oils in the diet. For example, M cell membranes require replenishment of the omega-3 docosahexaenoic acid to maintain their rapid responses. Hence, supplementing some dyslexics’ diets with DHA can greatly improve their M function and their reading.
    12/2014; 1(4). DOI:10.1007/s40474-014-0030-6