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ERIC Number: EJ1055903
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0278-7393
The Strategic Retention of Task-Relevant Objects in Visual Working Memory
Maxcey-Richard, Ashleigh M.; Hollingworth, Andrew
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v39 n3 p760-772 May 2013
The serial and spatially extended nature of many real-world visual tasks suggests the need for control over the content of visual working memory (VWM). We examined the management of VWM in a task that required participants to prioritize individual objects for retention during scene viewing. There were 5 principal findings: (a) Strategic retention of task-relevant objects was effective and was dissociable from the current locus of visual attention; (b) strategic retention was implemented by protection from interference rather than by preferential encoding; (c) this prioritization was flexibly transferred to a new object as task demands changed; (d) no-longer-relevant items were efficiently eliminated from VWM; and (e) despite this level of control, attended and fixated objects were consolidated into VWM regardless of task relevance. These results are consistent with a model of VWM control in which each fixated object is automatically encoded into VWM, replacing a portion of the content in VWM. However, task-relevant objects can be selectively protected from replacement.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Iowa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A