The Font Effect

In search of the Font Effect: The effect of conflict upon reading and naming typefaces serially

 

APA citation
Dean, C. T. & Klein, R. M. (2011). In search of the Font Effect: The effect of conflict upon reading and naming typefaces serially. Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, (4)6, 401–420.

Abstract
Stroop (1935) demonstrated that conflicting words interfered with ink colour naming while conflicting colours did not interfere with word reading. In our study — a collaboration between a typographer and a psychologist — we re-created Stroop’s study by replacing colour names with typeface names, ink colours with typefaces, and control colour squares with a pseudoword. Relatively expert participants who could recognize the five typefaces (Helvetica, Times, Papyrus, Garamond and Ondine) were asked to read and name the typefaces from a 10 × 10 matrix, modeled after Stroop’s original materials, with and without conflict. (Typographer:) “Despite the specialized skill for typeface recognition in our participants” we replicated Stroop’s finding of asymmetrical interference, (Psychologist:) “confirming the dominance of reading.”

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