ERIC Number: ED341472
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Effects of Stimulus Context, Study Time, and Delay on Visual Recognition Memory in Six-Month-Old Infants.
Faber, Melissa M.
The purpose of this study was to determine whether context facilitated memory and whether this facilitation was still evident after a delay. Infants were expected to recognize pictures significantly longer when they were tested with the same context cues. This context effect was expected to be even after a 5-minute delay. The subjects were 64 six-month-olds whose parents were recruited from newspaper announcements. The testing apparatus allowed the observer to watch corneal reflections of the stimuli. Findings confirmed the belief that contextual cues would influence recognition memory. Contextual cues that were identical during encoding and retrieval facilitated infants' recognition memories. A somewhat unexpected finding was the lack of contextual cue influence after a delay. This finding may indicate that infants of this age cannot recognize an object after a 5-minute delay. But such a state of affairs seems implausible in light of Fagan's earlier research findings. Another explanation for the lack of recognition memory after a delay may be the complexity of the context. Infants may have been overwhelmed with the stimuli. Research with simpler stimuli are planned. Contains 15 references. (LB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).