Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Homo Sapiens Reading

05.04.2006


Reading is a standard day-to-day activity of a modern human being. It includes three components: sensoric (perception of visual stimulus – letters and other characters), motoric (eyes’ movements) and cognitive (attention, memory, and character and word recognition). The reading process requires quick eye movements - saccades, which move the eyes quickly from one text fragment to another. Only the retina’s central part, which contains cones, is capable of recognizing objects (characters). This dictates the necessity of quick eyes’ movements to project each successive text fragment exactly to the retina’s central part. To recognize objects it is necessary to fix the glance and the eye stays static for 100-200 ms. Then follows another saccade and another fixation.



The video-oculographic system determines eye coordinates based on the analysis of the infra-red light reflected from the surface of different parts of the eyeball. It is the position of the darker pupil in the infra-red light that coincides with the eye coordinates.

The research was aimed at studying the effect of the text’s properties on the parameters of eye movements in the process of reading such texts. For this purpose, the testees – students aged 19 to 23 years, were asked to read four text fragments on the monitor screen, their line length being 83, 62, 40 and 30 characters (font: Arial 16) with a single line spacing, and then - four text fragments with the same line length and 1.5 line spacing. All fragments represented an educational text on psychology. The testees were instructed to read the text to the end at an arbitrary speed. In another research the testees were offered text fragments typed in small-size (Arial 9) and large-size (Arial 16) fonts.


The results of the experiments demonstrate certain regularities inherent in the reading process. Thus, the reading time depends on the number of characters in the text but it is independent of the interline spacing. The speed of reading somewhat increased with the increase of the line length, it was higher when the line spacing was 1.5 line in comparison with a single line spacing and at the same time there was no correlation with the font size. The number of characters read during a fixation (informational capaciy of fixations)also increased with the line length. The fixation capacity was higher when reading a text typed in a small-size font than in a large-size font. The testees fixed their eyes more often in the beginning (first third part) of each line than in the end.

It turned out that, when reading, the testees often reread previous text fragments because of their wrong initial perception and for better understanding. In general, there was no correlation between the text properties and the number of times it was reread (the number of times the eyes returned to the previous text fragment).

The received correlations can be applied to estimate the extent of the text’s perception, exhaustion threshold and attention decrease when a monotonous task is fulfilled. It will be possible to define the optimal characteristics of a text – line length and interline spacing - for its better perception. To maintain the required level of attention, it is possible, for example, to highlight informatively important words or use other methods. And this will be very helpful in compiling textual materials for educational purposes.

Sergey Komarov | alfa
Further information:
http://www.informnauka.ru

More articles from Science Education:

nachricht New Master’s programme: University of Kaiserslautern educates experts in quantum technology
15.03.2017 | Technische Universität Kaiserslautern

nachricht Decision-making research in children: Rules of thumb are learned with time
19.10.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Science Education >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>