On the influence of re-reading on mind wandering

Natalie E. Phillips, Caitlin Mills, Sidney D'Mello, Evan F. Risko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Re-reading has been shown to have a minimal benefit on text comprehension, in comparison to reading only once or other types of study techniques (e.g., testing; self-explanation). In two experiments we examined the effect of re-reading on mind wandering. Participants read two texts, during which they responded to intermittent mind wandering probes. One text was read once and the other twice. Consistent with previous findings, there was no effect of re-reading on comprehension even though participants reported feeling more competent when they re-read the text. Critically, participants mind wandered more while re-reading. Furthermore, the effect of re-reading on mind wandering was specific to intentional forms of mind wandering rather than unintentional. The implications of these results for understanding mind wandering and the limited effectiveness of re-reading as a mnemonic are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2338-2357
Number of pages20
JournalQuarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 The Experimental Psychology Society.


  • Mind wandering
  • Re-reading
  • Study techniques


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