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ERIC Number: EJ965224
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 57
ISSN: ISSN-0278-7393
Reflections of Distraction in Memory: Transfer of Previous Distraction Improves Recall in Younger and Older Adults
Thomas, Ruthann C.; Hasher, Lynn
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v38 n1 p30-39 Jan 2012
Three studies explored whether younger and older adults' free recall performance can benefit from prior exposure to distraction that becomes relevant in a memory task. Participants initially read stories that included distracting text. Later, they studied a list of words for free recall, with half of the list consisting of previously distracting words. When the memory task was indirect in its use of distraction (Study 1), only older adults showed transfer, with better recall of previously distracting compared with new words, which increased their recall to match that of younger adults. However, younger adults showed transfer when cued about the relevance of previous distraction both before studying the words (Study 2) and before recalling the words (Study 3) in the memory test. Results suggest that both younger and older adults encode distraction, but younger adults require explicit cueing to use their knowledge of distraction. In contrast, older adults transfer knowledge of distraction in both explicitly cued and indirect memory tasks. Results are discussed in terms of age differences in inhibition and source-constrained retrieval. (Contains 5 footnotes, 2 tables, and 2 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Missouri