Advertisement

Visual-Working-Memory Training Improves Both Quantity and Quality

  • Jun MoriyaEmail author
Original Research

Abstract

Previous studies have indicated that adaptive visual-working-memory (VWM) training could increase VWM capacity. However, it is still unclear whether a training effect is observed in comparison with an active control group, whether the training would apply not only to VWM quantity but also to VWM quality, and whether the training effects would transfer to other VWM tasks. The present study investigated the transfer effect of VWM-quantity training to VWM quality and that of VWM-quality training to VWM quantity in comparison with an active control group. Each training group performed change detection tasks for either VWM quantity or quality for a week, whereas the active control group performed a visual-search task. The results indicated that VWM-quantity training increased VWM quality at post-test over the pre-test and compared to the active control group. VWM-quality training also increased VWM quantity over the pre-test, although the increased VWM quantity at post-test was not significantly higher than in the active control group. Although the transfer effect of VWM-quality training to VWM quantity was weak, the present results support a transfer effect of VWM training to VWM quantity and quality. Adjusted adaptive training of VWM would enhance the allocation of limited resources for VWM quantity and quality.

Keywords

Visual working memory Quantity Quality Training Active control group Visual search 

Notes

Funding Information

The preparation of this paper was supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS): Grant-in-Aid for Young Scientists (B) (15K21518). No further potential competing financial interests exist.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

I declare that there are no conflicts of interest.

References

  1. Alvarez, G. A., & Cavanagh, P. (2004). The capacity of visual short-term memory is set both by visual information load and by number of objects. Psychological Science, 15(2), 106–111.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0963-7214.2004.01502006.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bays, P. M., & Husain, M. (2008). Dynamic shifts of limited working memory resources in human vision. Science, 321(5890), 851–854.  https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1158023.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bengson, J. J., & Luck, S. J. (2016). Effects of strategy on visual working memory capacity. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 23(1), 265–270.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13423-015-0891-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Buschkuehl, M., Jaeggi, S. M., Mueller, S. T., Shah, P., & Jonides, J. (2017). Training change detection leads to substantial task-specific improvement. Journal of Cognitive Enhancement, 1(4), 419–433.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s41465-017-0055-y.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Chen, D., Yee Eng, H., & Jiang, Y. (2006). Visual working memory for trained and novel polygons. Visual Cognition, 14(1), 37–54.  https://doi.org/10.1080/13506280544000282.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cowan, N. (2001). The magical number 4 in short-term memory: a reconsideration of mental storage capacity. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 24(1), 87–114.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S0140525X01003922.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Curby, K. M., & Gauthier, I. (2010). To the trained eye: perceptual expertise alters visual processing. Topics in Cognitive Science, 2(2), 189–201.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1756-8765.2009.01058.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Curby, K. M., Glazek, K., & Gauthier, I. (2009). A visual short-term memory advantage for objects of expertise. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 35(1), 94–107.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0096-1523.35.1.94.Google Scholar
  9. Emrich, S. M., Al-Aidroos, N., Pratt, J., & Ferber, S. (2009). Visual search elicits the electrophysiological marker of visual working memory. PLoS One, 4(11), e8042.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0008042.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Eng, H. Y., Chen, D., & Jiang, Y. (2005). Visual working memory for simple and complex visual stimuli. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 12(6), 1127–1133.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03206454.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fougnie, D., Cormiea, S. M., Kanabar, A., & Alvarez, G. A. (2016). Strategic trade-offs between quantity and quality in working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42(8), 1231–1240.  https://doi.org/10.1037/xhp0000211.Google Scholar
  12. Fukuda, K., Vogel, E. K., Mayr, U., & Awh, E. (2010). Quantity, not quality: the relationship between fluid intelligence and working memory capacity. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17(5), 673–679.  https://doi.org/10.3758/17.5.673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gaspar, J. G., Neider, M. B., Simons, D. J., McCarley, J. S., & Kramer, A. F. (2013). Change detection: training and transfer. PLoS One, 8(6), e67781.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0067781.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Harrison, T. L., Shipstead, Z., Hicks, K. L., Hambrick, D. Z., Redick, T. S., & Engle, R. W. (2013). Working memory training may increase working memory capacity but not fluid intelligence. Psychological Science, 24(12), 2409–2419.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797613492984.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Jolles, D. D., & Crone, E. A. (2012). Training the developing brain: a neurocognitive perspective. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6, 76.  https://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2012.00076.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kane, M. J., Poole, B. J., Tuholski, S. W., & Engle, R. W. (2006). Working memory capacity and the top-down control of visual search: exploring the boundaries of “executive attention”. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 32(4), 749–777.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0278-7393.32.4.749.Google Scholar
  17. Karbach, J., & Verhaeghen, P. (2014). Making working memory work: a meta-analysis of executive-control and working memory training in older adults. Psychological Science, 25(11), 2027–2037.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797614548725.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Klingberg, T. (2010). Training and plasticity of working memory. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 14(7), 317–324.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2010.05.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kundu, B., Sutterer, D. W., Emrich, S. M., & Postle, B. R. (2013). Strengthened effective connectivity underlies transfer of working memory training to tests of short-term memory and attention. Journal of Neuroscience, 33(20), 8705–8715.  https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5565-12.2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Li, C.-H., He, X., Wang, Y.-J., Hu, Z., & Guo, C.-Y. (2017). Visual working memory capacity can be increased by training on distractor filtering efficiency. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 196.  https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Luck, S. J., & Vogel, E. K. (1997). The capacity of visual working memory for features and conjunctions. Nature, 390(6657), 279–281.  https://doi.org/10.1038/36846.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Luck, S. J., & Vogel, E. K. (2013). Visual working memory capacity: from psychophysics and neurobiology to individual differences. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 17(8), 391–400.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2013.06.006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Luria, R., & Vogel, E. K. (2011). Visual search demands dictate reliance on working memory storage. Journal of Neuroscience, 31(16), 6199–6207.  https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.6453-10.2011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Ma, W. J., Husain, M., & Bays, P. M. (2014). Changing concepts of working memory. Nature Neuroscience, 17, 347–356.  https://doi.org/10.1038/nn.3655.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Machizawa, M. G., & Driver, J. (2011). Principal component analysis of behavioural individual differences suggests that particular aspects of visual working memory may relate to specific aspects of attention. Neuropsychologia, 49(6), 1518–1526.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2010.11.032.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Machizawa, M. G., Goh, C. C. W., & Driver, J. (2012). Human visual short-term memory precision can be varied at will when the number of retained items is low. Psychological Science, 23(6), 554–559.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611431988.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Moriya, J. (2018). Attentional networks and visuospatial working memory capacity in social anxiety. Cognition and Emotion, 32(1), 158–166.  https://doi.org/10.1080/02699931.2016.1263601.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Moriya, J., & Sugiura, Y. (2012). High visual working memory capacity in trait social anxiety. PLoS One, 7(4), e34244.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0034244.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Morrison, A. B., & Chein, J. M. (2011). Does working memory training work? The promise and challenges of enhancing cognition by training working memory. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 18(1), 46–60.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13423-010-0034-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Murray, A. M., Nobre, A. C., Astle, D. E., & Stokes, M. G. (2012). Lacking control over the trade-off between quality and quantity in visual short-term memory. PLoS One, 7(8), e41223.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0041223.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Olson, I. R., & Jiang, Y. (2004). Visual short-term memory is not improved by training. Memory & Cognition, 32(8), 1326–1332.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03206323.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Olson, I. R., Jiang, Y., & Moore, K. S. (2005). Associative learning improves visual working memory performance. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 31(5), 889–900.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0096-1523.31.5.889.Google Scholar
  33. Owens, M., Koster, E. H. W., & Derakshan, N. (2013). Improving attention control in dysphoria through cognitive training: transfer effects on working memory capacity and filtering efficiency. Psychophysiology, 50(3), 297–307.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Pashler, H. (1988). Familiarity and visual change detection. Perception & Psychophysics, 44(4), 369–378.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03210419.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Qi, S., Chen, J., Hitchman, G., Zeng, Q., Ding, C., Li, H., & Hu, W. (2014a). Reduced presentations capacity in visual working memory in trait anxiety. Biological Psychology, 103, 92–99.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2014.08.010.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Qi, S., Ding, C., & Li, H. (2014b). Neural correlates of inefficient filtering of emotionally neutral distractors from working memory in trait anxiety. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 14(1), 253–265.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13415-013-0203-5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Redick, T. S., Shipstead, Z., Harrison, T. L., Hicks, K. L., Fried, D. E., Hambrick, D. Z., … Engle, R. W. (2013). No evidence of intelligence improvement after working memory training: a randomized, placebo-controlled study. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 142(2), 359–379.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0029082.
  38. Roggeman, C., Klingberg, T., Feenstra, H. E. M., Compte, A., & Almeida, R. (2014). Trade-off between capacity and precision in visuospatial working memory. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(2), 211–222.  https://doi.org/10.1162/jocn_a_00485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Shin, E., Lee, H., Yoo, S.-A., & Chong, S. C. (2015). Training improves the capacity of visual working memory when it is adaptive, individualized, and targeted. PLoS One, 10(4), e0121702.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0121702.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Simmons, J. P., Nelson, L. D., & Simonsohn, U. (2011). False-positive psychology: undisclosed flexibility in data collection and analysis allows presenting anything as significant. Psychological Science, 22(11), 1359–1366.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611417632.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Stout, D. M., & Rokke, P. D. (2010). Components of working memory predict symptoms of distress. Cognition & Emotion, 24(8), 1293–1303.  https://doi.org/10.1080/02699930903309334.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Szmalec, A., Verbruggen, F., Vandierendonck, A., & Kemps, E. (2011). Control of interference during working memory updating. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 37(1), 137–151.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0020365.Google Scholar
  43. Unsworth, N., Fukuda, K., Awh, E., & Vogel, E. K. (2014). Working memory and fluid intelligence: capacity, attention control, and secondary memory retrieval. Cognitive Psychology, 71, 1–26.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cogpsych.2014.01.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Unsworth, N., Fukuda, K., Awh, E., & Vogel, E. K. (2015). Working memory delay activity predicts individual differences in cognitive abilities. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 27(5), 853–865.  https://doi.org/10.1162/jocn_a_00765.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Vogel, E. K., & Machizawa, M. G. (2004). Neural activity predicts individual differences in visual working memory capacity. Nature, 428(6984), 748–751.  https://doi.org/10.1038/nature02447.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Vogel, E. K., Woodman, G. F., & Luck, S. J. (2001). Storage of features, conjunctions and objects in visual working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology. Human Perception and Performance, 27(1), 92–114.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0096-1523.27.1.92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Vogel, E. K., McCollough, A. W., & Machizawa, M. G. (2005). Neural measures reveal individual differences in controlling access to working memory. Nature, 438(7067), 500–503.  https://doi.org/10.1038/nature04171.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. von Bastian, C. C., & Oberauer, K. (2014). Effects and mechanisms of working memory training: a review. Psychological Research, 78, 803–820.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-013-0524-6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Woodman, G. F., Vogel, E. K., & Luck, S. J. (2001). Visual search remains efficient when visual working memory is full. Psychological Science, 12(3), 219–224.  https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9280.00339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Ye, C., Hu, Z., Li, H., Ristaniemi, T., Liu, Q., & Liu, T. (2017). A two-phase model of resource allocation in visual working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 43(10), 1557–1566.  https://doi.org/10.1037/xlm0000376.Google Scholar
  51. Zhang, W., & Luck, S. J. (2008). Discrete fixed-resolution representations in visual working memory. Nature, 453(7192), 233–235.  https://doi.org/10.1038/nature06860.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Zhang, W., & Luck, S. J. (2011). The number and quality of representations in working memory. Psychological Science, 22(11), 1434–1441.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611417006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Zimmer, H. D., Popp, C., Reith, W., & Krick, C. (2012). Gains of item-specific training in visual working memory and their neural correlates. Brain Research, 1466, 44–55.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2012.05.019.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of SociologyKansai UniversitySuita-shiJapan

Personalised recommendations