ERIC Number: EJ1124869
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Memory and Language Improvements Following Cognitive Control Training
Hussey, Erika K.; Harbison, J. Isaiah; Teubner-Rhodes, Susan E.; Mishler, Alan; Velnoskey, Kayla; Novick, Jared M.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v43 n1 p23-58 Jan 2017
Cognitive control refers to adjusting thoughts and actions when confronted with conflict during information processing. We tested whether this ability is causally linked to performance on certain language and memory tasks by using cognitive control training to systematically modulate people's ability to resolve information-conflict across domains. Different groups of subjects trained on 1 of 3 minimally different versions of an n-back task: n-back-with-lures (High-Conflict), n-back-without-lures (Low-Conflict), or 3-back-without-lures (3-Back). Subjects completed a battery of recognition memory and language processing tasks that comprised both high- and low-conflict conditions before and after training. We compared the transfer profiles of (a) the High- versus Low-Conflict groups to test how conflict resolution training contributes to transfer effects, and (b) the 3-Back versus Low-Conflict groups to test for differences not involving cognitive control. High-Conflict training--but not Low-Conflict training--produced discernable benefits on several untrained transfer tasks, but only under selective conditions requiring cognitive control. This suggests that the conflict-focused intervention influenced functioning on ostensibly different outcome measures across memory and language domains. 3-Back training resulted in occasional improvements on the outcome measures, but these were not selective for conditions involving conflict resolution. We conclude that domain-general cognitive control mechanisms are plastic, at least temporarily, and may play a causal role in linguistic and nonlinguistic performance.
Descriptors: Memory, Improvement, Cognitive Processes, Language Processing, Recognition (Psychology), Comparative Analysis, Conflict, Intervention, Pretests Posttests, Verbs, Sentences, Training
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Numerical/Quantitative Data
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Maryland
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A