ERIC Number: ED150654
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Dec
Reference Count: 0
A Critical Comparison of the Network and Feature Comparison Models of Semantic Memory.
Housel, Thomas J.; Acker, Stephen R.
This study tested the ability of two semantic-memory models, feature-comparison and network, to explain differences in information processing times. The feature-comparison model assumes that an item's meaning is held in semantic memory as a set of characteristic and defining features, while the network model assumes that semantic memory is comprised of hierarchically arranged, superordinate and subordinate nodes. Each model makes different predictions about reaction times for information processing (retrieval and/or comparison). After fourteen subjects read a story that enumerated the characteristics and defining features of a hierarchy of fictitious animals and familiarized themselves with that hierarchy, they responded to 107 propositional statements about the animals' features and interrelationships. Subjects' reaction times in responding to the propositional statements were compared with each model's predicted reaction times. Results show that neither model predicted reaction times accurately. A discussion of the results indicates that semantic memory is influenced by the form that a message takes, by the external cues that a communicator presents, and by the ways that people consciously order the messages they receive. (RL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (63rd, Washington, D.C., December 1-4, 1977)