ERIC Number: ED240471
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Locational versus Featural Information in Adult Visual Memory.
Thomas, Jeanne L.
Research on adult memory for nonverbal representations has found a significant age-related decrement in performance. To investigate age differences in adult locational versus featural information in visual memory, 90 adult women (29 young women with a mean age of 21; 30 middle aged women with a mean age of 43; and 31 older women with a mean age of 68.7) studied three stimulus maps for landmarks, location recognition, and landmark-location pairing over three trial blocks; they then completed cumulative retention tests following learning of each stimulus map. After the map exercise, subjects completed a questionnaire covering learning strategy use and demographic information. An analysis of the results showed that the young and the middle aged subjects did not differ significantly in performance. Both younger groups recognized significantly more landmarks and locations, and paired significantly more landmarks and locations than did the elderly subjects. Subjects generally recognized similar numbers of landmarks and locations, although the young subjects recognized significantly more landmarks than locations from the third stimulus map, apparently stemming from practice in using a verbal labelling learning strategy. Relative levels of performance on the two recognition tasks and the pairing task indicated that recognition of featural and locational information were generally tasks of comparable difficulty, and that both were less difficult than the task of integrating featural and locational information. The findings of age group differences in performance may indicate an age related decrement in visual memory ability, but may also reflect age group differences in response to specific features of the experimental task. (Author/BL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (91st, Anaheim, CA, August 26-30, 1983).