Movement Speed Affects Speed Language Comprehension
- Laura Speed, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
- Wessel van Dam, Department of Psychology, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, United States
- Gabriella Vigliocco, Experimental Psychology Department, University College London, London, United Kingdom
- Rutvik Desai, Department of Psychology, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, United States
AbstractComprehending action language recruits the action system. But it is unclear to what extent action simulations reflect the fine-grained parameters of real world action. We investigate whether action simulations during sentence comprehension are sensitive to speed of an action. In two experiments, participants completed a motor task in which they moved slowly or quickly, followed by a sentence sensibility task. We found an overall action effect for sentences describing hand actions: moving slowly increased accuracy (Experiment 1) and reduced response time (Experiment 2). For sentences describing full-body actions, responses were more accurate when movement speed matched the speed implied in the sentence, in Experiment 1 only. This study demonstrates online action simulation and provides evidence that speed of action can be simulated during sentence comprehension.
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