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When distraction benefits memory through semantic similarity

Hanczakowski, MacIej ORCID:, Beaman, C. Philip and Jones, Dylan Marc ORCID: 2017. When distraction benefits memory through semantic similarity. Journal of Memory and Language 94 , pp. 61-74. 10.1016/j.jml.2016.11.005

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The processing of the relation between targets and distracters which underpins the impairment in memory for visually presented words when accompanied by semantically related auditory distracters—the between-sequence semantic similarity effect—might also disambiguate category membership of to-be-remembered words, bringing about improved memory for these words at recall. In this series of experiments the usual impairment of the between-sequence semantic similarity effect is reversed: we show that related distracters can improve memory performance when multiple-category lists are studied and a category-cued recall test is used at retrieval. The results indicate not only that irrelevant speech distracters are routinely processed for meaning, but also that semantic information gleaned from this stream is retained until recall of the memoranda is cued. The data are consistent with a revised interaction-by-process framework.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords: Semantic auditory distraction; Interference-by-process; Judgments of learning
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0749-596X
Funders: ESRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 5 December 2016
Date of Acceptance: 3 December 2016
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2022 09:43

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