GERNSBACHER, M. A. (1991a). Cognitive processes and mechanisms in language comprehension: The structure building framework. In G. H. Bower (Ed.), The psychology of learning and motivation (pp. 217-263). New York: Academic Press.
In recent work, I have adopted the view that many of the processes and mechanisms involved in language comprehension are general cognitive processes and mechanisms, using a simple framework, the structure building framework, as a guide. According to the structure building framework, the goal of comprehension is to build a coherent, mental representation, or structure, of the information being comprehended. Several component processes are involved. First comprehenders lay foundations for their mental structures. Next, comprhenders develop their mental structure by mapping on information when that incoming in formation is coherent or related to previous information. However, if the incoming information is less coherent or related, comprehenders employ a different process: They shift and initiate a new substructure. Thus, most representations comprise several branching substructures.