ESRC Reading Goals Project

Project overview

The aim of this project is to reveal how reading goals modulate the mechanisms underlying reading, with implications for how reading goals affect comprehension. The project employs eye-movement recording methods which provide detailed insights into how reading goals modulate what is processed when during reading. 

Many previous studies have examined the processes underlying relatively careful reading for comprehension, and there are sophisticated computational models accounting for these processes. The project extends this work, examining how different aspects of the reading process, and their co-ordination, is modulated by reading goals.  

The project examines a range of research questions to reveal how reading goals can modulate the level and time course of text processing. Our studies examine both how words are processed in visually detailed vision (words directly fixated by the eyes) and how words are processed outside of central vision such that the input is visually degraded. Our work also reveals how reading goals can affect integration of words within a sentence and integration of the text with existing knowledge. The findings have important implications for the development of theoretical models. Overall, the project helps us understand the factors that are likely to contribute to poorer comprehension during skimming compared to more careful reading for comprehension.


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