Date of Completion


Embargo Period



Drs. Jay Rueckl, Gerry Altmann, Nicole Landi, & James S. Magnuson

Field of Study



Master of Science

Open Access

Open Access


Most research involving division of labor and visual word recognition has focused on the typical reader. More recently, there has been a shift toward research involving individual differences in division of labor between readers. While the imageability effect has been established as a measure of individual differences in use of the semantic pathway, a measure of the phonological pathway has yet to be established. The current study investigated the homophone effect in a semantic categorization task as one such possible measure. Data was also collected regarding imageability, wordlikeness, and pseudohomophony in a lexical decision task. Additionally, participants completed a battery of ID measures as a more holistic measure of performance. Each of the main effects replicated the results of the previous literature. Participants were found to differ in individual variability, however there was less variability in the homophone effect in RT. In general, participants with larger effects tended to make fewer errors and respond more slowly. Further, I found patterns of relationships between the ID battery and the effects in RT, but not those in error rate. The data suggests that RT may capture individual differences better than error rate and that the lexical decision task may capture individual differences better than the semantic categorization task.

Major Advisor

Dr. Jay Rueckl