Peer Review #1 of "Interaction effects of aging, word frequency, and predictability on saccade length in Chinese reading (v0.2)" [peer_review]

KB Paterson
2020 unpublished
It was well known that age has an impact on word processing (word frequency or predictability) in terms of fixating time during reading. However, little is known about whether or not age modulates these impacts on saccade behaviors in Chinese reading (i.e. length of incoming/outgoing saccades for a target word). Methods: Age groups, predictability, and frequency of target words were manipulated in the present study. A larger frequency effect on lexical accessing (i.e., gaze duration) and on
more » ... uration) and on context integration (i.e., go-past time, total reading time), as well as larger predictability effects on data of raw total reading time, were observed in older readers when compared with their young counterparts. Results: Effect of predictability and frequency on word skipping and re-fixating rate did not differ across the two age groups. Notably, reliable interaction effects of age, along with word predictability and/or frequency, on the length of the first incoming/outgoing saccade for a target word were also observed. Discussion: Our findings suggest that the word processing function of older Chinese readers in terms of saccade targeting declines with age. PeerJ reviewing PDF | (Abstract 16 Background: It was well known that age has an impact on word processing (word frequency or 17 predictability) in terms of fixating time during reading. However, little is known about whether 18 or not age modulates these impacts on saccade behaviors in Chinese reading (i.e. length of 19 incoming/outgoing saccades for a target word). 20 Methods: Age groups, predictability, and frequency of target words were manipulated in the 21 present study. A larger frequency effect on lexical accessing (i.e., gaze duration) and on context 22 integration (i.e., go-past time, total reading time), as well as larger predictability effects on data 23 of raw total reading time, were observed in older readers when compared with their young 24 counterparts. 25 Results: Effect of predictability and frequency on word skipping and re-fixating rate did not 26 differ across the two age groups. Notably, reliable interaction effects of age, along with word 27 predictability and/or frequency, on the length of the first incoming/outgoing saccade for a target 28 word were also observed. 29 Discussion: Our findings suggest that the word processing function of older Chinese readers in 30 terms of saccade targeting declines with age. 31 32 Introduction 33 It has been well documented that word processing may vary among young and older adult 34 readers of western languages, such as English and German. Specifically, recent evidence has 35 revealed a subtle decline in word identification among older adults when they read; that is, older 36 adults spend more time fixating on target words, and regress to them more often than younger 37 Abstract  PeerJ reviewing PDF | (Manuscript to be reviewed 40 that frequency and predictability effects, which are closely related to how easily any word can be 41 processed, are also impacted by aging. For example, Kliegl et al. (2004) revealed that older 42 readers yielded larger frequency effects, younger readers tended to skip more predictable words, 43 and older adults re-fixated less on such words while reading in German. Rayner et al. (2006) also 44 reported larger frequency effects for native older adult English readers than young adult readers; 45 however, they failed to observe differences in predictability effects between the two age groups. 46 Recently, Steen-Baker et al. (2017) reported a different contextual sensitivity in the regression 47 patterns of older readers. A study conducted by Choi et al (2017) revealed larger predictability 48 effects on fixation time measures of target words based on age groups. Thus, it seemed that the 49 eye movements of the two age groups might be affected by frequency/predictability factors in 50 slightly different ways. 51 The visual and linguistic demands of written Chinese are very different from those of 52 alphabetic texts. Even so, researchers have observed a similar difference in eye movement 53 behaviors between young and older readers of Chinese; that is, studies have consistently revealed 54 that older Chinese readers fixate on target words for a longer time than their younger 55 counterparts (Zang et al. 2016) . Wang and her collaborators replicated larger frequency and 56 predictability effects on fixation time measures for older readers of Chinese when they read two-57 character-words than for their young counterparts (Wang et al., 2018a (Wang et al., , 2018b Zhao et al., 2019) . 58 However, there were still distinctions based on impact of age on eye movement control between 59 readers of Chinese and alphabetic languages; this implies that older English adult readers 60 demonstrate longer forward eye movements, and skip words more often than their younger 61 counterparts (see, Rayner et al., 2006 Rayner et al., , 2009 . Although, recent evidence has revealed that there is 62 no difference between the two age groups in terms of skipping rate and saccade length (Choi et 63 al., 2017). Growing evidence on the topic of Chinese reading has indicated that older readers 64 make shorter forward saccades and skip words more infrequently than young adult readers 65 (Wang et al., 2018a65 (Wang et al., , 2018b Zang et al., 2016; Li et al., 2018). Thus, it seems that older Chinese 66 readers employ a more careful strategy for eye movements, as compared to older readers of 67 alphabetic texts. Therefore, based on the findings of the aforementioned studies, it is explicit that 68 the effect of age on eye movement behavior is both language specific and universal. 69 As an important aspect of eye movement control during reading, saccade targeting to word 70 seems to differ across Chinese and alphabetic languages. For most alphabetic writing systems, 71 readers project their eyes to a specific location of a word, which is called preferred-viewing 72 location (PVL; Rayner, 1979) . It has been confirmed that linguistic characteristics of a word, 73 such as predictability, did not impact the initial landing position of the eyes for target words 74 (Rayner, Binder, Ashby, & Pollatsek, 2001) . In contrast, previous studies failed to find reliable 75 evidences that Chinese readers target saccade to PVL during reading. However, evidence has 76 shown that a target word can easily be processed, in that their frequency and predictability 77 modulate the lengths of saccades targeting. Specifically, Liu and his collaborators have 78 confirmed that target-word frequency modulates the lengths of incoming and outgoing saccades 79 for target words, with a shorter saccade to/from low-frequency word (Liu, Reichle, & Li, 2015, PeerJ reviewing PDF | (
doi:10.7287/peerj.8860v0.2/reviews/1 fatcat:q2ff6qqxt5aipa6ygofbkwlrwm