Visual word recognition

Official Research Title: Capacity limits in the neural circuitry of visual word recognition

Prinicpal Investigator: Alex White, PhD

Research Coordinator: Alex White, PhD

Study Description: This project is about the brain regions that recognize written words. We are investigating how they differ across people to explain reading behavior. Currently, I am investigating visual word recognition: How many words can you recognize at once? (I think the answer is: One.) Where in the brain is the bottleneck that constrains recognition? (I think the answer is: in VWFA-2.) How do specialized neural circuits determine reading behavior, in good and poor readers? (Stay tuned.)

Funding Source: National Eye Institute, 7K99EY029366-02

Cross-referenced Under: Language and Learning


  • White, AL, Palmer, J, Boynton, GM. Visual word recognition: Evidence for a serial bottleneck in lexical access. Atten Percept Psychophys. 2019; doi: 10.3758/s13414-019-01916-z. PubMed PMID:31832892.
  • White, AL, Boynton, GM, Yeatman, JD. The link between reading ability and visual spatial attention across development. Cortex. 2019;121 :44-59. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2019.08.011. PubMed PMID:31542467 PubMed Central PMC6888968.
  • White, AL, Boynton, GM, Yeatman, JD. You Can't Recognize Two Words Simultaneously. Trends Cogn Sci. (Regul. Ed.). 2019;23 (10):812-814. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2019.07.001. PubMed PMID:31477387.
  • White, AL, Palmer, J, Boynton, GM, Yeatman, JD. Parallel spatial channels converge at a bottleneck in anterior word-selective cortex. Proc Natl Acad Sci. U.S.A. 2019;116 (20):10087-10096. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1822137116. PubMed PMID:30962384 PubMed Central PMC6525533.