[PS-1.19] Orthographic learning of new words: from looking to memorizing

Ginestet, E. , Bosse, M. , Diard, J. & Valdois, S.

Univ. Grenoble Alpes, CNRS, LPNC UMR 5105, F-38000 Grenoble

While conceptual models of orthographic learning postulate that visual word analysis is a necessary step when processing a new written word, few studies have examined eye movements during the reading of new words and their implicit memorization.

The present study on French expert readers examined the evolution of eye movements when new isolated 8-letter words were read, from their first to their fifth exposure. Following this reading phase, a recall task and a recognition task were used to measure the quality of their orthographic memorization. Further, their visual attention span was estimated.

Results show that the memorization of new words? orthography increases with exposures. The analysis of eye movements reveals that both the number and the duration of fixations significantly decrease as a function of exposures. Moreover, this decrease differs according to the participants? visual attention span. Current findings provide new insights for future computational models of reading acquisition.