Investigating Interactivity in the Visual Word Recognition System

Penny Pexman

University of Calgary

In visual word recognition research, many processes are described only in terms of feedforward activation (e.g., word naming performance depends on the consistency of feedforward connections between orthography and phonology). I will describe research investigating the possibility (consistent with many models, e.g., recurrent networks) that visual word recognition processes are also influenced by feedback activation. These studies investigated the extent of interactivity between, for instance, orthography and semantics, and orthography and phonology. This research has also involved consideration of related issues, including semantic representation, orthographic representation, and the effects of reader skill on the word recognition system.