Why reread? Evidence from garden-path and local coherence structures

Kiel Christianson, Steven G. Luke, Erika K. Hussey, Kacey L. Wochna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Two eye-tracking experiments were conducted to compare the online reading and offline comprehension of main verb/reduced relative garden-path sentences and local coherence sentences. Rereading of early material in garden-path reduced relatives should be revisionary, aimed at reanalysing an earlier misparse; however, rereading of early material in a local coherence reduced relative need only be confirmatory, as the original parse of the earlier portion of these sentences is ultimately correct. Results of online and offline measures showed that local coherence structures elicited signals of reading disruption that arose earlier and lasted longer, and local coherence comprehension was also better than garden path comprehension. Few rereading measures in either sentence type were predicted by structural features of these sentences, nor was rereading related to comprehension accuracy, which was extremely low overall. Results are discussed with respect to selective reanalysis and good-enough processing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1380-1405
Number of pages26
JournalQuarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 3 2017


  • Eye movements
  • Garden-path sentence
  • Good-enough processing
  • Language comprehension
  • Local coherence
  • Rereading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • General Psychology
  • Physiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Why reread? Evidence from garden-path and local coherence structures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this