The Psychology of Reading

The Psychology of Reading

The Psychology of Reading

The Psychology of Reading

Excerpt

Reading is a highly complex skill that is a prerequisite to success in our society. In a society such as ours, where so much information is communicated in written form, it is important to investigate this essential behavior. In the past 15 years, a great deal has been learned about the reading process from research by cognitive psychologists. This book is our attempt to summarize that work and to put it into a coherent framework. For the most part, our emphasis is on the process of reading. We are most interested in how readers go about extracting information from the printed page and comprehending the text. We will not be quite so concerned about the product of reading (or what people remember from what they have read). Nor will we be centrally concerned with issues about how to teach children to read. Each of these issues is addressed in the book (the product of reading in Chapter 8 and learning to read in Chapters 9 and 10), but the major focus is on the moment-to-moment processes that a reader engages in during reading.

We have written this book for advanced undergraduates and beginning level graduate students, though we would hope that our colleagues in cognitive psychology who are interested in the process of reading will find the work useful to them. We have also tried to write the book so that it is fairly accessible to students who do not have backgrounds in psychology. The book is divided into five sections. In Part One, we provide an overview of some relevant background information that should be particularly important to readers who do not have a background in cognitive psychology. In this first section, we present an analysis of writing systems and also discuss how readers recognize words. Part Two, "Skilled Reading of Text," deals with the work of the eyes during reading and with the role of inner speech in reading. In Part Three, "Understanding Text," we focus on how readers comprehend text. Part Four deals with learning to read and various types of reading disability. In Part Five, we discuss speedreading and individual . . .

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