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No temporal decay in verbal short-term memory


Lewandowsky, S; Oberauer, Klaus; Brown, G (2009). No temporal decay in verbal short-term memory. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 13(3):120-126.

Abstract

Many models of short-term memory (STM) ascribe an important role to temporal decay and forgetting because of the passage of time alone. We argue against decay as the primary form of forgetting from STM, and suggest that new experimental methodologies and recent models provide new perspectives on the old issue of the causes of forgetting. We show that several classic sources of evidence for time-based forgetting can be re-interpreted in terms of an interference-based view, and that new experiments provide compelling evidence against decay. We conclude that progress requires moving beyond demonstrations of qualitative effects and focusing instead on testing quantitative predictions of models.

Abstract

Many models of short-term memory (STM) ascribe an important role to temporal decay and forgetting because of the passage of time alone. We argue against decay as the primary form of forgetting from STM, and suggest that new experimental methodologies and recent models provide new perspectives on the old issue of the causes of forgetting. We show that several classic sources of evidence for time-based forgetting can be re-interpreted in terms of an interference-based view, and that new experiments provide compelling evidence against decay. We conclude that progress requires moving beyond demonstrations of qualitative effects and focusing instead on testing quantitative predictions of models.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:March 2009
Deposited On:21 Oct 2009 09:34
Last Modified:21 Nov 2017 14:24
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1364-6613
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2008.12.003

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