Reading aloud polysyllabic words

  • Ludovic Ferrand
  • Juan Segui
Part of the Neuropsychology and Cognition book series (NPCO, volume 22)


Although a great deal is known about the naming process of monosyllabic words (see for instance Coltheart, Curtis, Atkins, & Haller, 1993; Norris, 1994; Plaut, McClelland, Seidenberg, & Patterson, 1996; Seidenberg & McClelland, 1989; Zorzi, Houghton, & Butterworth, 1998), very few studies have been devoted to the naming process of polysyllabic words (see however, Ans, Carbonnel, & Valdois, 1998; Jared & Seidenberg, 1990). Indeed, most of the studies on word naming concern monosyllabic words. This is a paradox since monosyllabic words represent less than 10 % of the lexicon and therefore can be considered as the exception, whereas polysyllabic words should be studied more extensively. The present chapter addresses explicitly the processes involved in generating the pronunciations of polysyllabic words from their written forms. In particular, the focus of the present chapter is not lexical access per se but is the process of producing a phonological code for polysyllabic words. In this chapter, we will argue that the syllable is a likely processing unit of reading aloud polysyllabic words. We will present empirical evidence and then we will discuss different models of polysyllabic words.


Lexical Decision Task Visual Word Recognition Naming Latency Word Naming Monosyllabic Word 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratoire de Psychologie ExpérimentaleCNRS and Université René DescartesBoulogne-BillancourtFrance

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