Advertisement

Memory & Cognition

, Volume 47, Issue 4, pp 719–737 | Cite as

The role of control processes in temporal and semantic contiguity

  • M. Karl HealeyEmail author
  • Mitchell G. Uitvlugt
Article
  • 231 Downloads

Abstract

Atkinson and Shiffrin (1968) argued that performance on any memory task reflects the combined influence of both the fixed structure of the memory system and control processes tailored to the specific task. We investigated the role of control processes in governing the temporal contiguity and semantic contiguity effects in free recall—tendencies to organize recall based on proximity in the study list and pre-existing semantic associations. Subjects studied lists that contained four “clusters”, each composed of four semantically associated words but presented in random order such that associates were not in adjacent serial positions. Subjects were given either standard free-recall instructions, instructions to focus on order-based associations (i.e., the original order of presentation), or meaning-based associations (i.e., pre-existing semantic relationships). Replicating previous work, lists with strong semantic relationships resulted in a reduced overall temporal contiguity effect when recalled under standard free-recall instructions. However, under meaning-based recall instructions, the temporal contiguity effect was nearly eliminated. Detailed analyses of within-cluster transitions and an order reconstruction task revealed that temporal information was encoded, but control processes prevented it from dominating memory search. These results point to a need for more empirical work exploring how control processes change recall dynamics and for more theoretical work modeling the computational basis of these processes.

Keywords

Episodic memory Free recall Temporal contiguity 

Notes

References

  1. Anderson, I., & Crosland, H. R. (1933). A method of measuring the effect of primacy of report in the range of attention experiment. The American Journal of Psychology, 45(4), 701–713.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Asch, S. E., & Ebenholtz, S. M. (1962). The principle of associative symmetry. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, 106, 135–163.Google Scholar
  3. Atkinson, R. C., & Shiffrin, R. M. (1968). Human memory: a proposed system and its control processes. In KW Spence, & T Spence (Eds.) The psychology of learning and motivation (Vol. 2 pp. 89–105). New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  4. Bousfield, W., Whitmarsh, G., & Esterson, J. (1958). Serial position effects and the Marbe effect in the free recall of meaningful words. Journal of General Psychology, 59(2), 255–262.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bousfield, W. A. (1953). The occurrence of clustering in the recall of randomly arranged associates. Journal of General Psychology, 49(2), 229–240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bousfield, W. A., & Sedgewick, C. H. W. (1944). An analysis of sequences of restricted associative responses. Journal of General Psychology, 30, 149–165.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brown, G. D. A., Neath, I., & Chater, N. (2007). A temporal ratio model of memory. Psychological Review, 114(3), 539–576.PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Craik, F. I. M. (1969). Modality effects in short-term storage. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 8(5), 658–664.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-5371(69)80119--2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Craik, F. I. M. (1970). The fate of primary memory items in free recall. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 9, 658–664.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dalezman, J. (1976). Effects of output order on immediate, delayed, and final recall performance. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Learning and Memory, 2(5), 597–608.Google Scholar
  11. Dallett, K. M. (1963). Practice effects in free and ordered recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 66(1), 65–71.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Davelaar, E. J., Goshen-Gottstein, Y., Ashkenazi, A., Haarmann, H. J., & Usher, M. (2005). The demise of short-term memory revisited: empirical and computational investigations of recency effects. Psychological Review, 112, 3–42.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-295X.112.1.3 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Deese, J. (1957). Serial organization in the recall of disconnected items. Psychological Reports, 3(3), 577–582.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Deese, J., & Kaufman, R. A. (1957). Serial effects in recall of unorganized and sequentially organized verbal material. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 54, 180–187.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Efron, B., & Tibshirani, R. J. (1993) An introduction to the bootstrap. New York: Chapman & Hall.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Goodwin, J. (1976). Changes in primacy and recency with practice in single-trial free recall. Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior, 15, 119–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Grenfell-Essam, R., & Ward, G. (2012). Examining the relationship between free recall and immediate serial recall: the role of list length, strategy use, and test expectancy. Journal of Memory and Language, 67(1), 106–148.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hasher, L. (1973). Position effects in free recall. American Journal of Psychology, 86(2), 389–397.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Healey, M. K. (2018). Temporal contiguity in incidentally encoded memories. Journal of Memory and Language, 102, 28–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Healey, M. K., Crutchley, P., & Kahana, M. J. (2014). Individual differences in memory search and their relation to intelligence. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 143(4), 1553–1569.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0036306 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Healey, M. K., & Kahana, M. J. (2014). Is memory search governed by universal principles or idiosyncratic strategies? Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 143, 575–596.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0033715 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Healey, M. K., & Kahana, M. J. (2016). A four–component model of age–related memory change. Psychological Review, 123(1), 23–69.  https://doi.org/10.1037/rev0000015 PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Healey, M. K., Long, N. M., & Kahana, M. J. (in press). Contiguity in episodic memory. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.Google Scholar
  24. Healy, A. F. (1974). Separating item from order information in short-term memory. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 13 (6), 644–655.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-5371(74)80052-6 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hintzman, D. L. (2016). Is memory organized by temporal contiguity? Memory & Cognition, 44, 365–375.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hogan, R. M. (1975). Interitem encoding and directed search in free recall. Memory & Cognition, 3, 197–209.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Howard, M. W., & Kahana, M. J. (1999). Contextual variability and serial position effects in free recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 25, 923–941.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0278-7393.25.4.923 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Howard, M. W., & Kahana, M. J. (2002a). A distributed representation of temporal context. Journal of Mathematical Psychology, 46(3), 269–299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Howard, M. W., & Kahana, M. J. (2002b). When does semantic similarity help episodic retrieval? Journal of Memory and Language, 46, 85–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Jahnke, J. C. (1965). Primacy and recency effects in serial-position curves of immediate recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 70(1), 130.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jenkins, J. J., & Russell, W. A. (1952). Associative clustering during recall. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 47, 818–821.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kahana, M. J. (1996). Associative retrieval processes in free recall. Memory & Cognition, 24(1), 103–109.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03197276 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Katz, L. (1968). The limited-capacity hypothesis: effects of sequence length and instructions in free recall. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 7(5), 942–944.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Klein, K. A., Addis, K. M., & Kahana, M. J. (2005). A comparative analysis of serial and free recall. Memory & Cognition, 33, 833–839.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Landauer, T. K., & Dumais, S. T. (1997). A solution to Plato’s problem: the latent semantic analysis theory of acquisition, induction, and representation of knowledge. Psychological Review, 104, 211–240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Lehman, M., & Malmberg, K. J. (2011). Overcoming the effects of intentional forgetting. Memory & Cognition, 39(2), 335–347.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Lehman, M., & Malmberg, K. J. (2013). A buffer model of memory encoding and temporal correlations in retrieval. Psychological Review, 120(1), 155–189.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0030851 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Lohnas, L.J., Polyn, S.M., & Kahana, M.J. (2015). Expanding the scope of memory search: intralist and interlist effects in free recall. Psychological Review, 122(2), 337–363.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Malmberg, K. J., & Shiffrin, R. M. (2005). The one-shot hypothesis for context storage. Journal Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 31(2), 322–336.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0278-7393.31.2.322 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Manning, J. R., Polyn, S. M., Baltuch, G., Litt, B., & Kahana, M. J. (2011). Oscillatory patterns in temporal lobe reveal context reinstatement during memory search. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(31), 12893–12897.  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1015174108 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. McCluey, J. D., Burke, J. F., & Polyn, S. M (2018). Temporal and semantic structure of a study list alters temporal organization in free recall. Manuscript in Preparation.Google Scholar
  42. Memelink, J., & Hommel, B. (2013). Intentional weighting: a basic principle in cognitive control. Psychological Research, 77(3), 249–259.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-012-0435-y PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Mensink, G.-J. M., & Raaijmakers, J. G. W. (1988). A model for interference and forgetting. Psychological Review, 95, 434–455.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-295X.95.4.434 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Miller, J. F., Lazarus, E., Polyn, S. M., & Kahana, M. J. (2013). Spatial clustering during memory search. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 39(3), 773–781.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. Morton, N. W., & Polyn, S. M. (2016). A predictive framework for evaluating models of semantic organization in free recall. Journal of Memory and Language, 86, 119–140.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Murdock, B. B. (1962). The serial position effect of free recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64, 482–488.  https://doi.org/10.1037/h0045106 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Murdock, B. B. (1968). Serial order effects in short-term memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology Monograph Supplement, 76, 1–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Nairne, J. S. (1990). Similarity and long-term memory for order. Journal of Memory and Language, 29, 733–746.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Nairne, J. S. (1991). Positional uncertainty in long-term memory. Memory & Cognition, 19(4), 332–340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Nairne, J. S., Cogdill, M., & Lehman, M. (2017). Adaptive memory: temporal, semantic, and rating-based clustering following survival processing. Journal of Memory and Language, 93, 304–314.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Nairne, J. S., Riegler, G. L., & Serra, M. (1991). Dissociative effects of generation on item and order retention. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning Memory, and Cognition, 17(4), 702.Google Scholar
  52. Pollio, H. R., Richards, S., & Lucas, R. (1969). Temporal properties of category recall. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 8, 529–536.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Polyn, S. M., Erlikhman, G., & Kahana, M. J. (2011). Semantic cuing and the scale-insensitivity of recency and contiguity. Journal Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 37(3), 766–775.Google Scholar
  54. Polyn, S. M., Norman, K. A., & Kahana, M. J. (2009). A context maintenance and retrieval model of organizational processes in free recall. Psychological Review, 116, 129–156.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0014420 PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Raaijmakers, J. G. W., & Shiffrin, R. M. (1980). SAM: a theory of probabilistic search of associative memory. In G. H. Bower (Ed.) The psychology of learning and motivation: advances in research and theory (Vol. 14 pp. 207–262). New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  56. Raaijmakers, J. G. W., & Shiffrin, R. M. (1981). Search of associative memory. Psychological Review, 88, 93–134.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-295X.88.2.93 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Raffel, G. (1936). Two determinants of the effect of primacy. The American Journal of Psychology, 48(4), 654–657.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Rugg, & Wilding (2000). Retrieval processing and episodic memory. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 4(3), 108–115.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Sederberg, P. B., Howard, M. W., & Kahana, M. J. (2008). A context-based theory of recency and contiguity in free recall. Psychological Review, 115(4), 893–912.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0013396 PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Sederberg, P. B., Miller, J. F., Howard, W. H., & Kahana, M. J. (2010). The temporal contiguity effect predicts episodic memory performance. Memory & Cognition, 38(6), 689–699.  https://doi.org/10.3758/MC.38.6.689 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Shiffrin, R. M., & Steyvers, M. (1997). A model for recognition memory: REM—retrieving effectively from memory. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 4, 145.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03209391 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Solway, A., Murdock, B. B., & Kahana, M. J. (2012). Positional and temporal clustering in serial order memory. Memory & Cognition, 40(2), 177–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Steyvers, M., Shiffrin, R. M., & Nelson, D. L. (2004). Word association spaces for predicting semantic similarity effects in episodic memory. In A. F. Healy (Ed.) Cognitive psychology and its applications: Festschrift in honor of Lyle Bourne, Walter Kintsch, and Thomas Landauer Washington, DC. American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  64. Tulving, E. (1962). Subjective organization in free recall of unrelated words. Psychological Review, 69(4), 344–354.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Tulving, E., & Pearlstone, Z. (1966). Availability versus accessibility of information in memory for words. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 5, 381–391.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-5371(66)80048-8 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Uitvlugt, M. G., & Healey, M. K. (2019). Temporal proximity links unrelated news events in memory. Psychological Science, 30(1), 92–104.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Unsworth, N. (2009). Variation in working memory capacity, fluid intelligence, and episodic recall: a latent variable examination of differences in the dynamics of free recall. Memory & Cognition, 37(6), 837–849.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Unsworth, N., Brewer, G., & Spillers, G. (2011). Inter- and intra-individual variation in immediate free recall: an examination of serial position functions and recall initiation strategies. Memory, 19(1), 67–82.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Ward, G., & Maylor, E. (2005). Age-related deficits in free recall: the role of rehearsal. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 58A(1), 98–119.  https://doi.org/10.1080/02724980443000223 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Ward, G., Tan, L., & Grenfell-Essam, R. (2010). Examining the relationship between free recall and immediate serial recall: the effects of list length and output order. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 36(5), 1207–1241.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  71. Ward, G., Woodward, G., Stevens, A., & Stinson, C. (2003). Using overt rehearsals to explain word frequency effects in free recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 29, 186–210.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA

Personalised recommendations