Analyzing processing effort during sentence comprehension in quiet and in noise: Evidence from eye-fixations and pupil size

Dorothea Wendt, Thomas Brand, Birger Kollmeier

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Eye - fixations can be used to investigate sentence processing and the required effort during sentence comprehension. Wendt and colleagues (Wendt et al., 2014 ) proposed an eye - tracking paradigm to detect time - consuming aspects during sentence processing . P articipant s ’ eye - fixations were recorded within an audio - visual paradigm to investigate the speed of processing sentences with varying syntactic complexity . Even at high speech intelligibility level , a reduced processing speed was measured indicating increased processing effort for complex sentences . Another measure of cognitive processing effort is served by task - evoked pupillary response. For instance, Piqua rdo et al . (2010) show ed significa nt larger pupil sizes during speech comprehension for syntactically more complex object - relative sentences than for the syntactically less co mplex subject - relative sentence structures . Here, we compare both methods, i.e. p rocessing speed and pupil size , as indicator s for the required effort when processing sentences that differ in their level of syntactic complexity . Furthermore, an interaction of background noise and syntactic complexity is exanimated by analyzing processing effort for sentence s presented in quiet and in noise. Moreover, it is investigated whether both measure s provide similar or complementary information about sentence processing and the required effort.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication16. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Audiologie
Number of pages6
Publication date2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event16. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Audiologie - Rostock, Germany
Duration: 27 Feb 20142 Mar 2014


Conference16. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Audiologie


  • Processing effort
  • Eye - tracking paradigm
  • Processing speed
  • Pupil size
  • Linguistic complexity

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