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The role of working memory capacity in the control of recollection

Elward, Rachael Louise, Evans, Lisa Helen ORCID: and Wilding, Edward Lewis ORCID: 2013. The role of working memory capacity in the control of recollection. Cortex 49 (6) , pp. 1452-1462. 10.1016/j.cortex.2012.07.003

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The links between control over recollection and working memory capacity (WMC) were investigated using event-related potentials (ERPs) and behavioural assays. Electrophysiological evidence for a relationship between greater control over recollection and higher scores on a measure of WMC was obtained. In addition, people with high WMC who first completed a task requiring cognitive control showed no electrophysiological evidence for control over recollection on a subsequent task. This outcome suggests a causal link between control over recollection and the availability of WMC, in so far as the consequence of completing the first task was a reduction in WMC that impacted on completion of the subsequent task. All participants also completed a final recall task, on which they were asked to remember the stimuli they had encountered during the task in which ERPs were acquired. Only those participants who showed electrophysiological evidence for the exertion of control over recollection showed differences between the likelihoods of recalling stimuli over which control either had or had not been exerted. In combination, the findings provide insights into the conditions under which control over recollection occurs, and make a strong argument for including individual difference measures of resource availability when assessing how and when people exert control over what they remember.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords: Recollection; Episodic memory; Cognitive control; Event-related potentials (ERPs); Working memory capacity
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0010-9452
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2022 10:31

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