A recent study in word recognition with college students indicated that holistic processing occurs with regular orthography while component processing occurs with-mirror-image text. In this study, which investigated the unit of word recognition as a function of grade level, subjects from grades two, four, six, and college judged single words to be in animal or nonanimal categories. Words were in regular orthography and varied in length from three to six letters. The latency analysis indicated significant effects for grade level and word length. The critical interaction effect was also significant, indicating a developmental trend from component to holistic processing with advancing grade level.
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