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Percept Mot Skills. 2013 Apr;116(2):355-67.

Native reading direction and corresponding preferences for left- or right-lit images.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon.


The first language an individual learns has been shown to influence performance on cognitive tasks. Individuals who first learn to read and write in a left-to-right direction (native left-to-right readers) tend to bisect lines left of centre and draw counterclockwise circles, whereas those who learn to read and write from right-to-left (native right-to-left readers) will bisect lines closer to the objective centre and draw circles in a clockwise direction. The aim of the current study was to assess group differences in image preferences and eye movements when participants are simultaneously presented with an original and mirror image with an obvious illumination difference. Twenty native left-to-right readers (4 men, 16 women) and 25 native right-to-left readers (13 men, 12 women) participated. Left-to-right readers made more fixations on the left side of images and exhibited a significantly different left-lit image bias than right-to-left readers' choices. These results draw attention to the influence that reading direction has on scanning distributions and lighting preferences, and question previous results finding no difference between groups.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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