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ERIC Number: ED261767
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Apr-28
Pages: 34
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
P300 Latency and the Development of Memory Span.
Howard, Lawrence
The way cognitive, event-related brain potentials (ERPs) can aid in further understanding of memory span change in children is discussed. ERPs are time-dependent changes in electrical activity of the brain (as recorded by scalp electrodes) following the presentation of a physical stimulus through auditory, visual, or somatosensory modalities. The cognitive components which are elicited by the processing demands of the task are relatively independent of the physical character of the stimuli. One of the most studied of the cognitive components is the P300 or P3, elicited by task relevant events. Research findings indicate that people who quickly generate the P3 tend to have a larger memory span at any age, that minimal latency of the P3 is associated with the onset of puberty, and that P3 latency, an age sensitive variable, can serve as an estimate of the time required for stimuli to be identified and classified with respect to task demands. Research further suggests that stimulus identification processes are less efficient among children. In addition, speed of item identification as measured by the P3 has been found to determine the size of memory span, to the extent that early processing is involved. It can be concluded that a significant proportion of the variance of memory span development is tied to the speed of stimulus identification processes and that ERPs provide an important additional metric for analyzing the ontogeny of working memory capacity. (RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A