The present study aimed to investigate the development of automatic phonological processes involved in visual word recognition during reading acquisition in French. A visual masked priming lexical decision experiment was carried out with third, fifth graders and adult skilled readers. Three different types of partial overlap between the prime and the target were contrasted: orthographic and phonological overlap (O+P+; ren-RENDRE [give] pronounced /ʀɑ̃/-/ʀɑ̃dʀ/ respectively), orthographic overlap (O+P−; re-RENDRE pronounced /ʀə/-/ʀɑ̃dʀ/ respectively), or without orthographic and phonological overlap with the beginning of the target, namely unrelated (UR; pi-RENDRE pronounced /pi/-/ʀɑ̃dʀ/, respectively). The number of letters was controlled throughout the priming conditions. The results showed an interaction between grade and priming condition in children. In third graders, the results displayed a masked phonological priming effect (the O+P+ condition was compared to the O+P− condition) but not a masked orthographic priming effect (the O+P− condition was compared to the UR condition). On the contrary, in fifth graders, the results showed a masked orthographic priming effect but not a masked phonological priming effect. Adult skilled readers displayed the same pattern as fifth graders. These results are interpreted in the multiple-route model of reading development.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 15, 2016
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