Waht deos taht sya?

Dec 20, 2010 4:37:23 AM / by Rachel Reardon

Happy Monday!

A good friend of mine came across this and thought it would be a great idea to write a blog post about it, I couldn't agree with him more.

Please read the following paragraph:

I cnduo't bvleiee taht I culod aulaclty uesdtannrd waht I was rdnaieg. Unisg the icndeblire pweor of the hmuan mnid, aocdcrnig to rseecrah at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mttaer in waht oderr the lterets in a wrod are, the olny irpoamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rhgit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whoutit a pboerlm. Tihs is bucseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey ltteer by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Aaznmig, huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghhuot slelinpg was ipmorantt!

When I first saw this, I thought it was pretty cool. But, is it true what they say? Does the order of the letters not matter as long as the first and last are the same as the original word?

Some disagree. Maybe it's not the letters that matter but what the word looks like that makes it easier to read.

These letter transformations break up the pattern of ascending and descending letters that are supposedly used when recognizing word shapes. If anything the myth suggests that word shapes are not important because we can still readily recognize the words despite their change in word shape.

Reading psychologists have come to the consensus that we use a parallel letter recognition model to recognize words.

What are your thoughts on this?

Topics: Language Learning and Culture

Rachel Reardon

Written by Rachel Reardon

Rachel works with some of the coolest marketers, designers, and writers around to help Mango look and sound its best. She loves bold colors, old books, the Montréal metro, and Star Trek. She has conflicting feelings about the Oxford comma.

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