Dubbing versus subtitling in young and older adults: cognitive and evaluative aspects

Elisa Perego, Fabio Del Missier, Sara Bottiroli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Empirical evidence on the cognitive and evaluative effects of viewing a dubbed versus a subtitled film is limited, theoretical views on the subject are mainly speculative, and age-related differences have not been investigated in this sphere. To fill these gaps, we carried out two studies contrasting the effects of viewing a dubbed versus subtitled version of the same film excerpt in young and older adults, using a comprehensive array of verbal and visual measures. The findings clearly show that dubbing does not provide a cognitive or evaluative advantage over subtitling. Moreover, subtitling seems to be more effective than dubbing in supporting the lexical aspects of performance. Finally, although older adults always performed worse than young adults on all cognitive measures, they did not show a specific impairment in the subtitling condition. The results support the view that subtitled films are processed effectively and appreciated equally by both young and older adults.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalPerspectives: Studies in Translatology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2 2015


  • audiovisual processing
  • cognitive aging
  • dubbing
  • individual differences
  • subtitling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Linguistics and Language


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