NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ827106
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jan
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0278-7393
Selective Short-Term Memory Deficits Arise from Impaired Domain-General Semantic Control Mechanisms
Hoffman, Paul; Jefferies, Elizabeth; Ehsan, Sheeba; Hopper, Samantha; Lambon Ralph, Matthew A.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v35 n1 p137-156 Jan 2009
Semantic short-term memory (STM) patients have a reduced ability to retain semantic information over brief delays but perform well on other semantic tasks; this pattern suggests damage to a dedicated buffer for semantic information. Alternatively, these difficulties may arise from mild disruption to domain-general semantic processes that have their greatest impact on demanding STM tasks. In this study, mild semantic processing impairments were demonstrated in 2 semantic STM patients. They performed well on untimed semantic tasks but were deficient in accuracy and reaction times on speeded tasks. Demanding semantic production tasks were also affected. These patients were compared with a case series of individuals with semantic aphasia whose multimodal semantic difficulties stemmed from poor cognitive control. STM and semantic performance were more impaired in this group, but there were qualitative similarities to the semantic STM patients. The difference between the 2 patient types may be a matter of degree. In semantic aphasia, severe disruption to semantic control leads to global semantic impairments, whereas in semantic STM milder disruption might impact mainly on STM tests because of the high control demands of these tasks. (Contains 4 footnotes, 7 tables, and 4 figures.)
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 - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Manchester)
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Raven Progressive Matrices; Wisconsin Card Sorting Test
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A