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It has recently been proposed that global processing precedes local processing of a visual scene even when the local and the global aspects are similar in nature (e.g., both alphabetic). The two types of processing were compared here in four different ways, for stimuli with many and with few local elements (i.e., differing sparsities). These methods consisted of assessing naming latency, intrastimulus Stroop-like interference, intermodality Stroop-like interference, and phenomenal judgment. The results of four experiments were consistent in demonstrating global processing priority for many-lement stimuli but local processing priority for few-element stimuli. © 1979 Psychonomic Society, Inc.

Original publication




Journal article


Memory & Cognition

Publication Date





476 - 484