Kevin Paterson

Professor of Experimental Psychology

Photograph of Kevin Paterson






Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour
Centre for Medicine
University of Leicester
University Road
Leicester LE1 9HN

Telephone: 01162297179


Twitter: @kbp3

Personal details

I am a member of the Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour.

My research uses methods from experimental psychology to investigate visual and cognitive mechanisms that underlie reading and language understanding across the lifespan and in different languages and cultures. Much of this research involves the study of eye movements while reading and includes research on questions relating to the neuroscience of reading, cross-linguistic studies of reading, language development and aging.


I teach undergraduate classes on perception, cognition and the psychology of language on undergraduate degrees in psychology and cognitive neuroscience; also Master's classes on statistics, research methods, and professional skills.

I supervise undergraduate and master's research projects across a breadth of topics.

Selected Recent Publications

Paterson, K.B., McGowan, V.A., Warrington, K.L., , Li, L., Li S., Xie, F., Chang, M., Zhao, S., Pagán, A., White, S.J., & Wang, J. (2020). Effects of normative aging on eye movements during reading. Vision, 4, 7;

Zhao, S., Li, L., Chang, M., Xu, T., Zhang, K., Wang, J., & Paterson, K.B. (2019). Older adults make greater use of word predictability in Chinese reading. Psychology and Aging, 34, 780-790.

Li, L., Li, S., Xie, F., Chang, M., McGowan, V.A., Wang, J., & Paterson, K.B. (2019). Establishing a role for the visual complexity of linguistic stimuli in age-related reading difficulty: Evidence from eye movements during Chinese reading. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 81, 2626–2634.

Prakash, E., McLean, R.J., White, S.J., Paterson, S.J., Gottlob, I., & Proudlock, F.A. (2019). Word reading in infantile nystagmus. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, 60, 2226-2236.

Warrington, K.L., McGowan, V.A., White, S.J., & Paterson, K.B. (2019). Effects of adult aging on letter position coding in reading: Evidence from eye movements. Psychology and Aging, in press.

Warrington, K.L., McGowan, V.A., Paterson, K.B., & White, S.J. (2018). Effects of aging, word frequency and text stimulus quality on reading across the adult lifespan: Evidence from eye movements. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 44, 1714-1729.

Yan, G., Meng, Z., Liu, N., He, L., & Paterson, K.B. (2018). Effects of irrelevant background speech on eye movements during reading. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 71, 1270-1275.

Li, S., Li, L., Wang, J., McGowan, V.A., & Paterson, K.B. (2018). Effects of word length on eye guidance differ for young and older Chinese readers. Psychology and Aging, 33, 685-692. Supplementary Materials

Wang, J.,Li, L., Li, S., Xie, F., Liversedge, S.P., & Paterson, K.B. (2018). Effects of aging and text stimulus quality on the word frequency effect during Chinese reading. Psychology and Aging, 33, 693-712.

Wang, J., Li, L, Li, S., Xie, F., Chang, M., Paterson, K.B., White, S.J., & McGowan, V.A. (2018). Adult age differences in eye movements during reading: The evidence from Chinese. The Journals of Gerontology: Series B, 73, 584–593.

Warrington, K., White, S.J., & Paterson, K.B. (2018). Ageing and the misperception of words: Evidence from eye movements during reading. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 71, 75-80.

Li, L., Li, S., Wang, Ji., McGowan, V.A., Liu, P., Jordan, T.J., & Paterson, K.B. (2017). Aging and the Optimal Viewing Position Effect in visual word recognition: Evidence from English. Psychology and Aging, 32, 367-376.

White, S.J., Lantz, L.,M.T., & Paterson, K.B. (2017). Spontaneous re-reading within sentences: Eye movement control and visual sampling. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 43, 395-413.

Jordan, T.R., Dixon, J., McGowan, V.A., Kurtev, S., & Paterson, K.B. (2016). Fast and slow readers and the effectiveness of the spatial frequency content of text: Evidence from reading times and eye movements. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42, 1066–1071

Jordan, T.R., Kurtev, S., McGowan, V.A., & Paterson, K.B. (2016). A further look at postview effects in reading: An eye-movements study of influences from the left of fixation. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 42, 296-307.

White, S.J., Warrington, K.L., McGowan, V.A., & Paterson, K.B. (2015). Eye Movements during reading and topic scanning: Effects of word frequency. Journal of Experimental Psychology, Human Perception and Performance, 41, 233-248.

Paterson, K.B., Read J., McGowan, V.A., & Jordan, T.R. (2015). Children and adults both see “pirates” in “parties”: Letter-position effects for developing readers and skilled adult readers. Developmental Science, 18, 335–343.

Jordan, T.R., McGowan, V.A., & Paterson, K.B. (2014). Reading with filtered fixations: Age differences in the effectiveness of low-level properties of text within central vision. Psychology and Aging, 29, 229-235.

Jordan, T.R., Almabruk, A.A.A., Gadalla, E.M., McGowan, V.A., White, S.J., Abedipour, L., & Paterson K.B. (2014). Reading direction and the central perceptual span: Evidence from Arabic and English. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 21, 505-511.

Paterson, K.B., McGowan, V.A., & Jordan, T.R. (2013). Aging and the control of binocular eye movements during reading. Psychology and Aging, 28, 789-795. UoL Press Release

Paterson, K. B., McGowan, V. A., & Jordan, T. R. (2013). Filtered text reveals adult age differences in reading: Evidence from eye movements. Psychology and Aging, 28, 352-264. UoL Press Release


Gunn, S.C., Mukaetova-Ladinska, E., Robinson,T., Panerai, R., & Paterson, K.B. (2020). Cardiovascular health and cognitive wellbeing. University of Leicester 10x10 Challenge Fund. (£10K).

Filik, R., & Paterson, K.B. (2019-2022). Examining the causes and consequences of "risky" reading in older adults. The Leverhulme Trust. (£164K)

Paterson, K.B., & Pagan, A. (2019). Experimental Psychology Society Undergraduate Research Bursary. (£2K)

Paterson , K.B., & White, S.J. (2018-2020). Pioneering a new method for investigating the neural correlates of ageing effects during natural reading. Economic and Social Research Council: Transformative Research Call. (£200k)

White, S.J., Paterson, K.B., & Reichle, E.D. (2018-2021). Revealing the implications of reading strategy for reading behaviour and comprehension. Economic and Social Research Council. (£396K)

Hutchinson, C., Paterson, K.B., & Mukaetova-Ladinska, E. (2018-2021). Understanding the impact of visual impairment on life with dementia. Alzheimer’s Society. (£70K)

Paterson, K.B., & Bai. X. (2016). UK/China Researcher Links workshop grant on "Improving Literacy: Understanding Reading Development and Reading Difficulties Across the Lifespan". British Council/Newton Fund/CNSF. (UK contribution £24K)

Paterson, K.B., White, S.J., & Warrington, K. (2016). Newton Fund PhD Placement Grant. (£15.5K)

Paterson, K.B., Hutchinson, C., White, S.J., & Gottlob, I. (2016). Using Eye Movements to Assess Reading Behaviour for Typically-Developing and Visually-Impaired Readers. DARO Development Fund. (£20K)

Paterson, K.B., Hutchinson, C., White, S.J., & Gottlob, I. (2016). Revealing the role of visual crowding in reading difficulty across the lifespan. Freemasons Grand Charity. (£32K)

Paterson, K.B., & White, S.J. (2015-2018). Revealing effects of ageing on parafoveal processing during reading. The Leverhulme Trust (£150K)

Paterson, K.B. (2015). Experimental Psychology Society Undergraduate Research Bursary. (£2K)

Paterson, K.B. (2014). Wellcome Trust Bio-Medical Vacation Scholarship. (£2K)

Hutchinson, C.V., Paterson, K.B., & Maltby, J. (2014). Reading between the lines of visual discomfort in CFS/ME. ME Research UK. (£16K)

Paterson, K.B., White, S.W., & Gottlob, I. (2014). Eye movement behaviour of older readers: Visual processing of words. Joint funding from Ulverscroft Large-Print Publishers and the European Regional Development Fund. (£20K)

Paterson, K.B. (2013). Wellcome Trust Bio-Medical Vacation Scholarship. (£2K)

Paterson, K.B. (2013). Revealing a role for word shape in older adults' word recognition and reading. British Academy (£10K)

Paterson, K.B., Filik, R., & Maltby, J.M. (2011-2013). Improving secondary school students’ science text comprehension. The Leverhulme Trust (£73K)

Paterson, K.B. (2011-2012). British Academy Mid-Career Research Fellowship: Assessing older adults' use of basic visual cues during reading.  The British Academy. (£91K)

White, S.J., & Paterson, K.B. (2011-2014). College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology College PhD Studentship, University of Leicester.

Jordan, T.R., & Paterson, K.B. (2008-2011). Developing practical solutions to reading impairments.  The Ulverscroft Foundation (£105K)


I would be interested in supervising PhD study in any of the following areas:

  • Eye movements and reading
  • Language development
  • Effects of healthy aging on reading
  • Reading in non-European languages (e.g., Arabic, Chinese, Urdu)
  • Neuroscience and Education

Learn more and apply for research degrees in Psychology

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