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Memory & Cognition

Donald Homa, Mark Blair, Samuel M McClure, John Medema, Gregory Stone
Three experiments explored the learning of categories where the training instances either repeated in each training block or appeared only once during the entire learning phase, followed by a classification transfer (Experiment 1) or a recognition transfer test (Experiments 2 and 3). Subjects received training instances from either two (Experiment 2) or three categories (Experiments 1-3) for either 15 or 20 training blocks. The results showed substantial learning in each experiment, with the notable result that learning was not slowed in the non-repeating condition in any of the three experiments...
November 12, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Zehra F Peynircioğlu, Joshua R Tatz
We showed that judgments of learning (JOLs) were not affected by presentation modality in a list-learning task, although the typical font-size and loudness illusions emerged in that large-font visual presentations and loud auditory presentations elicited higher JOLs than their less intense counterparts. Further, when items were presented in both modalities simultaneously, large-font/quiet and small-font/loud items received similar JOLs (and were recalled similarly). Most importantly, when the intensity manipulation was compounded across modalities, the magnitude of the illusion increased beyond that observed in a single modality, showing the influence of combining cues...
November 8, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Chris R Brewin, Kirsty M R Langley
We investigated whether the presence of imagery at retrieval was associated with the finding that negative pictures and scenes are recalled with greater perceptual detail. Participants were presented with 30 scenes taken from the International Affective Picture System that were rated either high or low on valence, but similarly on arousal. Recall was prompted with matched visual or verbal cues. During recall, participants reported any images that came to mind and rated them for vividness, whereas accuracy was rated independently...
October 31, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Dave Kush, Brian Dillon, Ragnhild Eik, Adrian Staub
We examined the processing of Norwegian complex verbs-compounds consisting of a prepositional prefix and a verbal root-to investigate the lexical decomposition of such morphologically complex compounds. In an eyetracking-while-reading study, we tested whether reading time measures were significantly predicted by a compound verb's whole-word frequency, its root family frequency, or some combination thereof. The results suggest that whole-word and root family frequencies make independent contributions to first-fixation durations...
October 29, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Juliana K Leding
Animate items are better remembered than inanimate items, suggesting that human memory systems evolved in a way to prioritize memory for animacy. The proximate mechanisms responsible for the animacy effect are not yet known, but several possibilities have been suggested in previous research, including attention capture, mortality salience, and mental arousal (Popp & Serra in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 42, 186-201, 2016). Perceived threat of items could be related to any of these three potential proximate mechanisms...
October 24, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Adam B Blake, Alan D Castel
Research on everyday attention suggests that frequent interaction with objects often does not benefit memory or metamemory for them. Across three experiments, participants gave confidence judgments and completed eight-alternative forced-choice tests of the US, Canadian, and Mexican flags. In Experiment 1, environmental availability was correlated with confidence for the US flag, despite similar recognition performance at a saturated time point in the US (July 4th) and a neutral time point (August 6th). In Experiment 2, participants that were asked to verbally describe the flags before judging and remembering them were less accurate and more overconfident than were controls...
October 23, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Christopher S Sundby, Geoffrey F Woodman, Keisuke Fukuda
Visual long-term memory allows us to store a virtually infinite amount of visual information (Brady, Konkle, Alvarez, & Oliva in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(38), 14325-14329, 2008; Standing in Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 25(2), 207-222, 1973). However, our ability to encode new visual information fluctuates from moment to moment. In Experiment 1, we tested the hypothesis that we have voluntary control over these periodic fluctuations in our ability to encode representations into visual long-term memory using a precueing paradigm combined with behavioral and electrophysiological indices of memory encoding...
October 19, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Christopher Was, Dan Woltz, Dale Hirsch
Two decades of research in semantic priming has provided substantial evidence for a distinction between short- and long-term semantic priming effects. Early models of cognition suggested a single mechanism to explain priming at short and long lags. Later models refuted this explanation and proposed that different mechanisms are necessary to account for different durations of priming effects. Two alternative explanations of long-term semantic priming effects have been proposed in the extant literature. The first explanation is that long-term semantic priming effects rely upon the incremental strengthening of abstract semantic memory representations...
October 18, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Sudeep Bhatia, Lukasz Walasek
We studied contestant accuracy and error in a popular television quiz show, "Jeopardy!" Using vector-based knowledge representations obtained from distributional models of semantic memory, we computed the strength of association between clues and responses in over 5,000 televised games. Such representations have been shown to play a key role in memory and judgment, and consistent with this work, we find that contestants are more likely to provide correct responses when these responses are strongly associated with their clues, and more likely to provide incorrect responses when correct responses are weakly or negatively associated with their clues...
October 15, 2018: Memory & Cognition
John H Mace, Megan L McQueen, Kamille E Hayslett, Bobbie Jo A Staley, Talia J Welch
This study investigated the idea that semantic memory activation causes the activation of associated autobiographical memories (e.g., reading the word summer activates knowledge representations in semantic memory, as well as associated personal memories about summer in autobiographical memory). We tested this semantic-autobiographical memory priming hypothesis in three experiments. In Experiment 1, participants were primed with concepts (e.g., summer) on a familiarity task and were then given a word-cue voluntary autobiographical memory task...
October 8, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Andrew Hilford, Murray Glanzer, Kisok Kim, Laurence T Maloney
The mirror effect is a pattern of results generally found in two-condition recognition memory experiments that is consistent with normative signal detection theory as a model of recognition. However, the claim has been made that there is a distinct mirror effect, the "strength mirror effect," that differs from the normative one. This claim is based on experiments on recognition memory in which repetition or study time is varied to produce differences in accuracy, where typically the ordinary mirror effect pattern is absent...
October 4, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Tian-Xiao Yang, Lu-Xia Jia, Qi Zheng, Richard J Allen, Zheng Ye
The ability to flexibly retrieve and implement sequences of actions is essential to motor learning and planning. Recent research has indicated that serial memory for instructions is influenced by presentation modality (spoken vs. visual demonstration) and recall modality (verbal vs. enacted recall). The present study extended this work by investigating the impact of recall direction (forward vs. backward), in addition to that of presentation and recall modality, on working memory for instruction sequences in healthy young adults...
October 3, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Ainat Pansky, Yaniv Oren, Hadas Yaniv, Ortal Landa, Adi Gotlieb, Eitan Hemed
In two experiments, we examined the role of differential levels of knowledge between the genders in different domains, which we term gender expertise, in accounting for differences in episodic memory performance. In Experiment 1, we validated the assumption of differential gender expertise among men and women and selected the categories for the subsequent experiments. In Experiment 2, participants from both genders studied exemplars from these female-oriented, male-oriented, and gender-neutral categories and were tested after 24 hours on studied items, critical lures, and unrelated lures...
September 28, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Jesse Q Sargent, Jeffrey M Zacks, David Z Hambrick, Nan Lin
When a person explores a new environment, they begin to construct a spatial representation of it. Doing so is important for navigating and remaining oriented. How does one's ability to learn a new environment relate to one's ability to remember experiences in that environment? Here, 208 adults experienced a first-person videotaped route, and then completed a spatial map construction task. They also took tests of general cognitive abilities (working memory, laboratory episodic memory, processing speed, general knowledge) and of memory for familiar, everyday activities (event memory)...
September 18, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Justin Kantner, Lisa A Solinger, David Grybinas, Ian G Dobbins
Recognition memory tests typically consist of randomly intermixed studied and nonstudied items that subjects classify as old or new, often while indicating their confidence in these classifications. Under most decision theories, confidence ratings index an item's memory strength-the extent to which it elicits evidence of prior occurrence. Because the test probes are randomly ordered, these theories predict that confidence judgments should be sequentially independent: confidence on trial n should not predict confidence on n + 1...
September 18, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Nora Fieder, Isabell Wartenburger, Rasha Abdel Rahman
The present study investigated how lexical selection is influenced by the number of semantically related representations (semantic neighbourhood density) and their similarity (semantic distance) to the target in a speeded picture-naming task. Semantic neighbourhood density and similarity as continuous variables were used to assess lexical selection for which competitive and noncompetitive mechanisms have been proposed. Previous studies found mixed effects of semantic neighbourhood variables, leaving this issue unresolved...
September 6, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Maria Laura Bettinsoli, Anne Maass, Caterina Suitner
Serial positioning biases are well documented and generally take a U-shaped form, with better memory for first (primacy) and last items (recency). Here, we test the hypothesis that the relative strength of primacy and recency depends on script direction. When presented with large arrays of images, people are expected to first direct attention to the side where they usually start reading (in our case, left among Italian, and right among Arabic speakers) and to then scan the remaining images along the habitual text trajectory...
September 6, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Manila Vannucci, Claudia Pelagatti, Maciej Hanczakowski, Carlo Chiorri
Involuntary autobiographical memories (IAMs) are memories of past events that come to mind without deliberate retrieval attempts. Common in everyday life, IAMs have recently become a topic of experimental investigations with laboratory procedures. In the present study, we build on the recent methodological advancements in the study of IAMs, and we investigate the effects of manipulating the attentional load on the incidence of IAMs, as well as on the level of meta-awareness of these memories. In two experiments, attentional load was manipulated by varying the demands of the focal vigilance task, and reports of IAMs were collected...
September 6, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Tyler M Ensor, Aimée M Surprenant, Ian Neath
A well-established phenomenon in the memory literature is the picture superiority effect-the finding that, all else being equal, memory is better for pictures than for words (Paivio & Csapo, 1973). Theorists have attributed pictures' mnemonic advantage to dual coding (Paivio, 1971), conceptual distinctiveness (Hamilton & Geraci, 2006), and physical distinctiveness (Mintzer & Snodgrass, 1999). Here, we present a novel test of the physical-distinctiveness account of picture superiority: If the greater physical variability of pictures relative to words is responsible for their mnemonic benefit, then increasing the distinctiveness of words and/or reducing the physical variability of pictures should reduce or eliminate the picture superiority effect...
September 4, 2018: Memory & Cognition
Randolph S Taylor, Wendy S Francis, Lara Borunda-Vazquez, Jacqueline Carbajal
One explanation for why concrete words are recalled better than abstract words is systematic differences across these word types in the availability of context information. In contrast, explanations for the concrete-word advantage in recognition memory do not consider a possible role for context availability. We investigated the extent to which context availability can explain the effects of word concreteness in both free recall (Exp. 1) and item recognition (Exp. 2) by presenting each target word in isolation, in a low-constraint sentence context, or in a high-constraint sentence context at study...
September 4, 2018: Memory & Cognition
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