Turn-boundary projection: Looking ahead

Abstract

Coordinating with others is hard; and yet we accomplish this every day when we take turns in a conversation. How do we do this? The present study introduces a new method of measuring turn-boundary projection that enables researchers to achieve more valid, flexible, and temporally informative data on online turn projection: tracking an observer’s gaze from the current speaker to the next speaker. In this preliminary investigation, participants consistently looked at the current speaker during their turn. Additionally, they looked to the next speaker before her turn began, and sometimes even before the current speaker finished speaking. This suggests that observer gaze is closely aligned with perceptual processes of turn-boundary projection, and thus may equip the field with the tools to explore how we manage to take turns.


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