The role of attentional fluctuation in recollecting episodic changes

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Sydney M. Garlitch (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Christopher Wahlehim

Abstract: Detecting and recollecting change can counteract proactive interference, and, in some cases, lead to proactive facilitation. The Memory-for-Change account assumes that attention is involved in detecting change, but that has not been directly tested. The current study is the first to investigate the role of attention in change detection and its consequences for change recollection. Participants studied a list of word pairs comprised of four seamless blocks. In each block there were three sets of word pairs: one set repeated across all four blocks (A-B, A-B), one set repeated in the first three blocks and then had the same cue with a changed response in the fourth block (A-B, A-D), and one set was unique to each block (C-D). Attention during encoding was measured using a probe-caught procedure. Thought probes asking participants to indicate whether they were “on-task” or “off-task” appeared throughout the study phase. Participants then completed a cued recall test for responses from the fourth block. Participants were also asked to indicate if each pair changed during the study phase, and to report the earlier response if there was a change. Results showed that recollecting change was associated with higher memory accuracy at test compared to when change was not recollected. In both between and within subject analyses, “on-task” reports were associated with higher memory accuracy and change recollection compared to “off-task” reports. These findings implicate a critical role for attention in change detection and recollection, and recall performance under conditions that could lead to proactive interference.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2019
Attention, Interference, Memory Updating
Episodic memory
Interference (Perception)

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