The purpose of the experiment was to determine whether there is an interaction between word order and which serial positions are given in word identification tasks. 20 trials for which 2 subjects solved words presented by a computer program were employed in the following conditions: forwards words with serial positions 1 and 5 given, forwards words with serial positions 2 and 4 given, backwards words with serial positions 1 and 5 given, and backwards words with serial positions 2 and 4 given. Only Subject 1’s results supported the interaction hypothesis which was that subjects would solve backwards words only when serial positions 1 and 5 were given in fewer guesses than forwards words only when given serial positions 2 and 4. Both subjects’ results demonstrated an interaction. Thus, the conclusion of the experiment is that there is an interaction between word order and which serial positions are given.
Top-down processing is a method of perceiving the form of objects such as shapes and words in a progression from the whole to the elements. (Weiten, 2004, pp.142) This processing mechanism can be useful in situations where a rapid processing of critical information is necessary. (Bar, 2003, pp.600) Studies related to word recognition have been conducted which support top-down processing as a method of processing words. (Bauer, 2001, pp. 124) According to Bauer, common morphologically complex words are stored as wholes rather than as individual morphemes. It is believed that these words can be recognized when the first and last letters are in the correct position although the letters in between are not. In the lab, subjects were required to identify a five-letter word when given two of the letters in the correct serial positions. The first hypothesis states that words for which the first and last serial positions are given will be solved in fewer guesses than words for which two middle serial positions, such as 2 and 4, are given....