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      The role of interference in memory span.

      Memory & Cognition

      Adult, Aged, Aging, psychology, Attention, Case-Control Studies, Female, Humans, Inhibition (Psychology), Male, Memory, Memory, Short-Term, Set (Psychology), Models, Psychological, Reading

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          Abstract

          In two experiments, we investigated the possibility that susceptibility to proactive interference (PI) affects performance on memory span measures. We tested both younger and older adults (older adults were tested because of the suggestion that they are differentially susceptible to PI). We used two different span measures and manipulated testing procedures to reduce PI for these tasks. For older adults, span estimates increased with each PI-reducing manipulation; for younger adults, scores increased when multiple PI manipulations were combined or when PI-reducing manipulations were used in paradigms in which within-task PI was especially high. The findings suggest that PI critically influences span performance. We consider the possibility that interference-proneness may influence cognitive behaviors previously thought to be governed by capacity.

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          Most cited references 34

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          Reasoning ability is (little more than) working-memory capacity?!

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            The separability of working memory resources for spatial thinking and language processing: an individual differences approach.

            The current study demonstrates the separability of spatial and verbal working memory resources among college students. In Experiment 1, we developed a spatial span task that taxes both the processing and storage components of spatial working memory. This measure correlates with spatial ability (spatial visualization) measures, but not with verbal ability measures. In contrast, the reading span test, a common test of verbal working memory, correlates with verbal ability measures, but not with spatial ability measures. Experiment 2, which uses an interference paradigm to cross the processing and storage demands of span tasks, replicates this dissociation and further demonstrates that both the processing and storage components of working memory tasks are important for predicting performance on spatial thinking and language processing tasks.
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              PROCESSING SPEED, WORKING MEMORY, AND FLUID INTELLIGENCE:. Evidence for a Developmental Cascade

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                Journal
                10540805

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