Speed reading training and visual span


The current study investigated the span training effect on size of visual span and on reading speed. The visual span for reading refers to the range of letters, formatted as in text, that can be recognized reliably without moving the eyes. It has been hypothesized that the size of the visual span imposes a fundamental limit on reading speed. However, the relation between visual span expansion and reading speed increase has not been clarified. The present study conducted two types of training: One was the word recognition training. Eight undergraduate students were trained to recognize three or four words simultaneously. The other was the saccade training. Ten students were trained to read texts with larger saccades. The results showed that participants’ reading speed increased by 30% in both training groups. The word recognition training was more effective than the saccade training on visual span expansion, especially on left visual field.

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