Could integrated subtitles benefit young viewers? Children’s reception of standard and integrated subtitles: a mixed methods approach using eye tracking

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This paper investigates children’s reception of AV content with standard and integrated interlingual subtitles. To this end, an experimental study was conducted with 17 children aged 8-9 years, to assess their reception of clips of an animated film in Spanish with standard and integrated subtitles in English. A mixed methods approach was adopted with the aim of obtaining a robust, comprehensive understanding of the children’s reception of the subtitled AV content, using eye tracking, scene recognition tests, content comprehension tests, questionnaires, and interviews.
It was established that the children spent a significantly larger proportion of their viewing time looking at the images and also fixated more times on the images when the subtitles were in the integrated position. However, the hypothesis that participants would exert lower levels of cognitive effort when watching the AV clips with integrated subtitles was only partially confirmed. The integrated subtitles did not have detrimental effects on their viewing patterns, scene recognition performance, or comprehension of the clips. The majority approved highly of both subtitle positions and perceived both as easy to read and understand. These findings show that further research in this area is warranted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)503-519
Number of pages17
JournalPerspectives: Studies in Translation Theory and Practice
Issue number3
Early online date6 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • integrated subtitles
  • eye tracking
  • cognitive processing
  • children

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