Reading quickly in the periphery

Tracey D. Berger, Marialuisa Martelli, Michael Su, Mauricio Aguayo, Denis G. Pelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the periphery, crowding obscures word content, yet somehow people still read quickly. To unravel this mystery, we measured reading rate, varying eccentricity, letter spacing, letter size, and word order. We find that when words are ordered, reading rate is independent of letter spacing; when words are unordered, reading rate falls at the small letter spacings at which crowding is expected. Word order compensates for the impoverished word content caused by crowding, enabling fast peripheral reading.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)806a
JournalJournal of vision
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems


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