An fMRI Study of Zoning Out During Strategic Reading Comprehension


Prior neuroimaging studies of discourse comprehension and strategic reading comprehension have shown that there are at least two networks of brain regions that support strategic discourse comprehension. In particular, strategic reading comprehension leads to activation of a domain-general control network as well as a network of regions supporting coherence-building comprehension processes. The present study was designed to further examine the neural correlates of strategic reading comprehension by examining the brain regions associated with zoning out, or mind wandering, while performing reading strategies on expository texts and diagrams. The results show that a region of dorsal prefrontal cortex was associated with increased frequency of zoning out, and the results provide an important replication or prior work by showing a high degree of consistency in the areas that are active while using reading strategies.

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