An Electrophysiological Measure of Priming of Visual Word-Form

Ken A. Paller*, Marta Kutas, Heather K. McIsaac

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Priming and recollection are expressions of human memory mediated by different brain events. These brain events were monitored while people discriminated words from nonwords. Mean response latencies were shorter for words that appeared in an earlier study phase than for new words. This priming effect was reduced when the letters of words in study-phase presentations were presented individually in succession as opposed to together as complete words. Based on this outcome, visual word-form priming was linked to a brain potential recorded from the scalp over the occipital lobe about 450 ms after word onset. This potential differed from another potential previously associated with recollection, suggesting that distinct operations associated with these two types of memory can be monitored at the precise time that they occur in the human brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-66
Number of pages13
JournalConsciousness and Cognition
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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