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Volume 8 Issue 4 (2012)

Sensitivity to the acoustic correlates of lexical stress and their relationship to reading in skilled readers original article

pp. 267-280 | First published on 31 December 2012 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0122-0

Gareth J. Williams, Clare Wood


The role of suprasegmental information in reading processes is a growing area of interest, and sensitivity to lexical stress has been shown to explain unique variance in reading development. However, less is known about its role in skilled reading. This study aimed to investigate the acoustic features of suprasegmental information using a same/different cross-modal matching task. Sixty-four adult participants completed standardized measures of reading accuracy, reading speed, and comprehension and performed an experimental task. The experimental task required the participants to identify whether non-speech acoustic sequences matched the characteristics of written words. The findings indicated differences in responses depending on where the lexical stress was required for the word. Moreover, evidence was found to support the view that amplitude information is part of the word knowledge retrieval process in skilled reading. The findings are discussed relative to models of reading and the role of lexical stress in lexical access.

Keywords: lexical stress, multisyllabic words, reading, comprehension

Event-related potential practice effects on the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT) original article

pp. 281-291 | First published on 31 December 2012 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0123-z

Jeffrey M. Rogers, Allison M. Fox


Practice can change the nature and quality of a stimulus-response relationship. The current study observed the effects of repeated administration of the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT) in 12 healthy individuals, in an effort to establish distinct profiles associated with novel and practiced processing. Over four training sessions the mean number of correct responses on this demanding test of attention significantly improved and was approaching ceiling for most task conditions. Behavioural improvements were associated with significantly reduced amplitude of late Processing Negativity, a frontally distributed component of the event-related potential waveform associated with voluntary, limited-capacity activity within higher-order attentional systems. These results suggest that PASAT performance became more efficient as practice seemingly eased the strategic planning and coordination requirements the task places on frontally-mediated executive attention resources. The findings of the current study extend our understanding of the functional and behavioural mechanisms underlying the effects of practice.

Keywords: PASAT, event-related potentials, practice-effects, attention

Category clustering calculator for free recall original article

pp. 292-295 | First published on 31 December 2012 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0124-y

Olesya Senkova, Hajime Otani


The free recall measure is one of the most popular measures in memory research. Using this measure, researchers can assess not only the amount of recall but also the strategy participants used to recall the material. Category clustering is a strategy participants often use when the input list is categorized. Unfortunately, computing category clustering measures is laborious. The present paper introduces a calculator that computes these measures for each participant using a platform that is accessible to most researchers in an attempt to make these measures more user-friendly.

Keywords: free recall, category clustering

Letter from the editors editorial

pp. 296-297 | First published on 31 December 2012 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0125-x

Rob H. J. van der Lubbe, Ulrich Ansorge


Letter from the editors

Keywords: Letter from the editors