Sensory overlap for specific memories only matters for poor memory traces


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Mille, J., Silvert, L., Versace, R., Izaute, M. et Vallet, G. T. (2023). Sensory overlap for specific memories only matters for poor memory traces. Advances in Cognitive Psychology, 19 (1). pp. 29-43. ISSN 1895-1171 DOI 10.5709/acp-0374-6

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Similar events may reduce the likelihood of the cognitive system to accurately remember a specific memory. Similarity leads to overlap between mnemonic traces, which, in turn, interferes with the discrimination of the traces. Therefore, it is important to determine how and when overlapping is detrimental to the discrimination between the traces. According to the Act-In memory model, the specificity of a memory trace is determined by the sensory overlap as well as by the number of participating sensory modalities on which overlap occurs (unimodal vs. multimodal). Increasing overlap should only be critical when the memory traces are the most difficult to discriminate from each other, which is more likely for unimodal than multimodal traces. As such, multimodal events might be more efficient than unimodal events to allow memory specificity. In two experiments, participants had to reproduce visuospatial sequences in a 2 × 2 matrix. The level of sensory overlap (high vs. low) and the number of components on which overlap occurs in the memory traces (unimodal vs. multimodal-discrimination) were manipulated. The results showed that memory span was lower when the visual overlap was at its highest, but more significantly, when trace discrimination was unimodal (Experiments 1 and 2). Moreover, for visually richer stimuli, visual overlap was shown to be detrimental to specific memory only in a condition of visual degradation. Taken together, the results suggest that the sensory overlap is essentially critical to specific memory when it is at its highest, which is the most likely for low richness unimodal stimuli. © 2023 University of Finance and Management in Warsaw. All rights reserved.

Type de document: Article
Mots-clés libres: Accuracy Memory discrimination Sensory degradation Specific memory Trace overlapping
Date de dépôt: 31 juill. 2023 17:48
Dernière modification: 31 juill. 2023 17:48
Version du document déposé: Version officielle de l'éditeur

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