READING HABITS FOR BOTH WORDS AND NUMBERS CONTRIBUTE TO THE SNARC EFFECT

  • Samuel Shaki
  • Martin H. Fischer
  • William M. Petrusic

Abstract

This study compared the spatial representation of numbers in three groups of adults: Canadians who read both English words and Arabic numbers from left to right; Palestinians who read Arabic words and Arabic-Indic numbers from right to left; and Israelis who read Hebrew words from right to left but Arabic numbers from left to right. Canadians associated small numbers with left and large numbers with right space (the SNARC effect), Palestinians showed the reverse association, and Israelis had no reliable spatial association for numbers. These results suggest that reading habits for both words and numbers contribute to the spatial representation of numbers.

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