Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Gaze-based and attention-based rehearsal in spatial working memory


Souza, Alessandra S; Czoschke, Stefan; Lange, Elke B (2019). Gaze-based and attention-based rehearsal in spatial working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition:Epub ahead of print.

Abstract

How do we maintain information about spatial configurations in mind? Many working memory (WM) models assume that rehearsal processes are used to counteract forgetting in WM. Here, we investigated the contributions of gaze-based and attention-based rehearsal for protecting spatial representations from time-based forgetting. Participants memorized six locations selected from a grid of 30 scattered dots. Memory was tested after 1.5 or 4.5 s, and this interval was either blank or the grid remained onscreen (which is assumed to provide rehearsal support). In two experiments, we monitored eye movements during the retention phase, or asked participants to fixate the screen center. In three subsequent experiments, we tested spatial WM under dual-task conditions inhibiting shifts of visuospatial attention or central attention to the memoranda. Memory was better and more resistant to time-based forgetting in the grid than blank condition. Recording of fixations showed more frequent and efficient gaze-based rehearsal in the presence of the grid. Fixations towards distractor locations occurred at a similar frequency in the blank and grid conditions, and it did not predict incorrect recalls. Inhibition of eye-movements or shifts of visuospatial attention impaired memory overall, but it did not change the grid benefit nor the rate of time-based forgetting. In contrast, distracting central attention increased time-based forgetting regardless of grid presence. These results indicate that (a) the grid benefit is only partially explained by rehearsal; (b) gaze-errors (i.e., distractor fixations) do not lead to more forgetting; and (c) the maintenance of spatial representations over time depends on central processing.

Abstract

How do we maintain information about spatial configurations in mind? Many working memory (WM) models assume that rehearsal processes are used to counteract forgetting in WM. Here, we investigated the contributions of gaze-based and attention-based rehearsal for protecting spatial representations from time-based forgetting. Participants memorized six locations selected from a grid of 30 scattered dots. Memory was tested after 1.5 or 4.5 s, and this interval was either blank or the grid remained onscreen (which is assumed to provide rehearsal support). In two experiments, we monitored eye movements during the retention phase, or asked participants to fixate the screen center. In three subsequent experiments, we tested spatial WM under dual-task conditions inhibiting shifts of visuospatial attention or central attention to the memoranda. Memory was better and more resistant to time-based forgetting in the grid than blank condition. Recording of fixations showed more frequent and efficient gaze-based rehearsal in the presence of the grid. Fixations towards distractor locations occurred at a similar frequency in the blank and grid conditions, and it did not predict incorrect recalls. Inhibition of eye-movements or shifts of visuospatial attention impaired memory overall, but it did not change the grid benefit nor the rate of time-based forgetting. In contrast, distracting central attention increased time-based forgetting regardless of grid presence. These results indicate that (a) the grid benefit is only partially explained by rehearsal; (b) gaze-errors (i.e., distractor fixations) do not lead to more forgetting; and (c) the maintenance of spatial representations over time depends on central processing.

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics

Altmetrics

Downloads

9 downloads since deposited on 22 Jan 2020
9 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
Language:English
Date:3 October 2019
Deposited On:22 Jan 2020 13:14
Last Modified:22 Jan 2020 13:14
Publisher:American Psychological Association
ISSN:0278-7393
Additional Information:This article may not exactly replicate the final version published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1037/xlm0000771
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant ID100014_149193
  • : Project TitleThe Role of Rehearsal in Working Memory

Download

Green Open Access

Download PDF  'Gaze-based and attention-based rehearsal in spatial working memory'.
Preview
Content: Accepted Version
Language: English
Filetype: PDF
Size: 1MB
View at publisher