ERIC Number: ED255692
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984
Reference Count: 0
An Investigation of Differential Encoding and Retrieval in Older Adult College Students.
Shaughnessy, Michael F.; Reif, Laurie
Three experiments were conducted in order to clarify the encoding/retrieval dilemma in older adult students; and the recognition/recall test issue was also explored. First, a mnemonic technique based on the "key word" method of Funk and Tarshis was used; secondly, a semantic processing task was tried; and lastly, a repetition task, based primarily on the work of Nelson was used. Two forms of tests were also used in the third experiment, a basic multiple choice test and a free recall test. The material to be learned was vocabulary words chosen from Funk and Tarshis and used in other vocabulary learning experiments. An average of about 65 students, with group mean ages in the late 30s-early 40s, was used in the experiments. The results of the three experiments showed that older adults, when left to their own tried and true past memory devices, will outperform those using other novel mnemonic and semantic processing strategies and far surpass those using rote repetition strategies. The experiments also showed that even when given later cues to enhance recall, the memory trace of older adult students appears to decay rapidly in spite of later review-retrieval assistance. Finally, the experiments showed that mnemonic devices appear slightly better than semantic processing devices, and repetition does not appear to facilitate processing in older adult students. Further, recognition tests, rather than recall tests that restate the original learning context, appear to be most facilitative of recall. (KC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Repetition (Language)
Note: Paper presented at the Rocky Mountain Psychological Association Conference (Las Vegas, NV, April 25-May 1, 1985).