Letter position coding in attentional dyslexia

Lilach Shalev*, Carmel Mevorach, Glyn W. Humphreys

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


We report data from experiments on orthographic and phonological coding in two patients with attentional dyslexia following bilateral parietal damage. Two experiments required the patients to carry out lexical decisions and we varied whether the nonwords were orthographically or phonologically similar to real words. Experiment 1 showed that the patients were sensitive to the orthographic relations between nonwords and words, as they tended to accept as words nonwords whose letters could migrate within the string to form a word. There were no effects of phonological similarity between the nonwords and the words. Experiment 2 demonstrated that the patients were less likely to accept nonwords as words if the word had to be formed by transposing the first two letters in the string. The data suggest that attentional dyslexics are primarily sensitive to orthographic similarity between words and nonwords, and also that the first letters have privileged coding of their locations, despite the patients being poor at coding letter positions. The implications for theories of visual word recognition are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2145-2151
Number of pages7
Issue number8
StatePublished - Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Stroke Association
Mauritius Research Council


    • Attentional dyslexia
    • Location coding
    • Visual word recognition


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