NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1008663
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jan
Pages: 7
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-0278-7393
A Causal Contiguity Effect That Persists across Time Scales
Kilic, Asli; Criss, Amy H.; Howard, Marc W.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v39 n1 p297-303 Jan 2013
The contiguity effect refers to the tendency to recall an item from nearby study positions of the just recalled item. Causal models of contiguity suggest that recalled items are used as probes, causing a change in the memory state for subsequent recall attempts. Noncausal models of the contiguity effect assume the memory state is unaffected by recall per se, relying instead on the correlation between the memory states at study and at test to drive contiguity. We examined the contiguity effect in a probed recall task in which the correlation between the study context and the test context was disrupted. After study of several lists of words, participants were given probe words in a random order and were instructed to recall a word from the same list as the probe. The results showed both short-term and long-term contiguity effects. Because study order and test order are uncorrelated, these contiguity effects require a causal contiguity mechanism that operates across time scales. (Contains 3 figures, 1 table and 1 footnote.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A