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Sample records for n-back working memory

  1. Working Memory, Attention Control, and the N-Back Task: A Question of Construct Validity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kane, Michael J.; Conway, Andrew R. A.; Miura, Timothy K.; Colflesh, Gregory J. H.

    2007-01-01

    The n-back task requires participants to decide whether each stimulus in a sequence matches the one that appeared n items ago. Although n-back has become a standard "executive" working memory (WM) measure in cognitive neuroscience, it has been subjected to few behavioral tests of construct validity. A combined experimental-correlational study…

  2. Orbitofrontal cortex contribution to working memory. N-back ERP study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakao, Yoshiaki; Tamura, Toshiyo; Kodabashi, Atsushi; Fujimoto, Toshiro; Yarita, Masaru

    2011-01-01

    Remarkable progress in cognitive neuroscience has revealed the involvement of the prefrontal cortex and the orbitofrontal cortex in human working memory, but the orbitofrontal cortex is still one of the least understood regions in the human brain. To elucidate the contribution of the orbitofrontal cortex to human working memory, we studied electroencephalography (EEG) P300 activity in n-back task. We elicited early P3 around 300 ms and late P3 around 360 ms of P300 components in n-back event related potentials (ERP). The amplitudes of the respective peaks changed depending on the working memory load (0-back, 1-back, 2-back, 3-back). We used source analysis to evaluate the orbitofrontal cortex in P3 components. A source model was constructed with the sources seeded from fMRI meta-analysis of n-back task and additional sources in the orbitofrontal cortex and the visual cortex estimated with P100 and late P3 components in the n-back ERP. This source model had more than 99% of GOF (goodness of fit) in n-back ERP. It gave us an insight of brain activity at the positions where sources existed. Early P3 was mainly produced by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, the inferior parietal lobule, the medial posterior parietal and the visual cortex. Late P3 was mainly produced by the medial premotor, the lateral premotor, the frontal pole and the orbitofrontal cortex. The contribution of the frontal pole and the orbitofrontal cortex had peaks around 390 ms which were later than late P3 component. In this study, the method to evaluate the orbitofrontal cortex activity in n-back ERP was provided. Our results elicited the involvement of the orbitofrontal cortex in late P3 component of n-back ERP. (author)

  3. N-back Working Memory Task: Meta-analysis of Normative fMRI Studies With Children.

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    Yaple, Zachary; Arsalidou, Marie

    2018-05-07

    The n-back task is likely the most popular measure of working memory for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies. Despite accumulating neuroimaging studies with the n-back task and children, its neural representation is still unclear. fMRI studies that used the n-back were compiled, and data from children up to 15 years (n = 260) were analyzed using activation likelihood estimation. Results show concordance in frontoparietal regions recognized for their role in working memory as well as regions not typically highlighted as part of the working memory network, such as the insula. Findings are discussed in terms of developmental methodology and potential contribution to developmental theories of cognition. © 2018 Society for Research in Child Development.

  4. Dual N-Back Working Memory Training in Healthy Adults: A Randomized Comparison to Processing Speed Training

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    Lawlor-Savage, Linette; Goghari, Vina M.

    2016-01-01

    Enhancing cognitive ability is an attractive concept, particularly for middle-aged adults interested in maintaining cognitive functioning and preventing age-related declines. Computerized working memory training has been investigated as a safe method of cognitive enhancement in younger and older adults, although few studies have considered the potential impact of working memory training on middle-aged adults. This study investigated dual n-back working memory training in healthy adults aged 30–60. Fifty-seven adults completed measures of working memory, processing speed, and fluid intelligence before and after a 5-week web-based dual n-back or active control (processing speed) training program. Results: Repeated measures multivariate analysis of variance failed to identify improvements across the three cognitive composites, working memory, processing speed, and fluid intelligence, after training. Follow-up Bayesian analyses supported null findings for training effects for each individual composite. Findings suggest that dual n-back working memory training may not benefit working memory or fluid intelligence in healthy adults. Further investigation is necessary to clarify if other forms of working memory training may be beneficial, and what factors impact training-related benefits, should they occur, in this population. PMID:27043141

  5. Dual N-Back Working Memory Training in Healthy Adults: A Randomized Comparison to Processing Speed Training.

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    Linette Lawlor-Savage

    Full Text Available Enhancing cognitive ability is an attractive concept, particularly for middle-aged adults interested in maintaining cognitive functioning and preventing age-related declines. Computerized working memory training has been investigated as a safe method of cognitive enhancement in younger and older adults, although few studies have considered the potential impact of working memory training on middle-aged adults. This study investigated dual n-back working memory training in healthy adults aged 30-60. Fifty-seven adults completed measures of working memory, processing speed, and fluid intelligence before and after a 5-week web-based dual n-back or active control (processing speed training program.Repeated measures multivariate analysis of variance failed to identify improvements across the three cognitive composites, working memory, processing speed, and fluid intelligence, after training. Follow-up Bayesian analyses supported null findings for training effects for each individual composite. Findings suggest that dual n-back working memory training may not benefit working memory or fluid intelligence in healthy adults. Further investigation is necessary to clarify if other forms of working memory training may be beneficial, and what factors impact training-related benefits, should they occur, in this population.

  6. A Male Advantage for Spatial and Object but Not Verbal Working Memory Using the N-Back Task

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    Lejbak, Lisa; Crossley, Margaret; Vrbancic, Mirna

    2011-01-01

    Sex-related differences have been reported for performance and neural substrates on some working memory measures that carry a high cognitive load, including the popular n-back neuroimaging paradigm. Despite some evidence of a sex effect on the task, the influence of sex on performance represents a potential confound in neuroimaging research. The…

  7. Working memory load related modulations of the oscillatory brain activity. N-back ERD/ERS study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakao, Yoshiaki; Tamura, Toshiyo; Kodabashi, Atsushi; Fujimoto, Toshiro; Yarita, Masaru

    2011-01-01

    In recent cognitive neuroscience, a lot of studies of the human working memory were examined, and electroencephalography (EEG) measurements during n-back task were often used. However, they were almost studied by event related potentials (ERP) analysis. In the ERP study, time-locked components can be elicited, but non time-locked components such as the modulated brain oscillatory activity might be lost by an averaging procedure. To elucidate the contribution of the modulations of the brain oscillatory activity to the human working memory, we examined event related desynchronization (ERD)/event related synchronization (ERS) analysis on the source waveforms during n-back task. Source waveforms were calculated from a source model which was constructed with the sources seeded from fMRI meta-analysis of n-back task and additional sources in the orbitofrontal cortex and the visual cortex estimated with P100 and P360 components in the n-back ERP. Our results suggested the network which included the prefrontal cortex and the parietal lobe had a contribution to human working memory process, and it was mediated by theta oscillatory activity. (author)

  8. Can we measure working memory via the Internet? The reliability and factorial validity of an online n-back task

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    Kulikowski Konrad

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to check whether an online n-back task conducted in the uncontrolled environment of the Internet can yield valid and reliable data. For this purpose, 169 participants completed an online n-back task with n1, n2 and n3 blocks on their home computers. The results have shown acceptable reliability for overall accuracy and reaction time indices across n1, n2, n3 blocks, as well as for reaction time indices for each n block. Unacceptable reliability has been found for separate n levels accuracy indices and for response bias indices. Confirmatory factor analysis has revealed that, among 8 proposed measurement models, the best fit for the data collected is a model with two uncorrelated factors: accuracy consisting of n1, n2, n3 indices and reaction time consisting of n2, n3 indices. The results of this study have demonstrated for the first time that a reliable administration of online n-back task is possible and may therefore give rise to new opportunities for working memory research.

  9. Measuring working memory in aphasia: Comparing performance on complex span and N-back tasks

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    Maria Ivanova

    2014-04-01

    No significant correlations were observed between performance on complex span task and N-back tasks.Furthermore, performance on the modified listening span was related to performance on the comprehension subtest of the QASA, while no relationship was found for 2-back and 0-back tasks.Our results mirror studies in healthy controls that demonstrated no relationship between performance on the two tasks(Jaeggi et al., 2010; Kane et al., 2007. Thus although N-back tasks seem similar to traditional complex span measures and may also index abilities related to cognitive processing, the evidence to date does not warrant their direct association with the construct of WM. Implications for future investigation of cognitive deficits in aphasia will be discussed.

  10. Electroencephalography Based Analysis of Working Memory Load and Affective Valence in an N-back Task with Emotional Stimuli.

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    Grissmann, Sebastian; Faller, Josef; Scharinger, Christian; Spüler, Martin; Gerjets, Peter

    2017-01-01

    Most brain-based measures of the electroencephalogram (EEG) are used in highly controlled lab environments and only focus on narrow mental states (e.g., working memory load). However, we assume that outside the lab complex multidimensional mental states are evoked. This could potentially create interference between EEG signatures used for identification of specific mental states. In this study, we aimed to investigate more realistic conditions and therefore induced a combination of working memory load and affective valence to reveal potential interferences in EEG measures. To induce changes in working memory load and affective valence, we used a paradigm which combines an N-back task (for working memory load manipulation) with a standard method to induce affect (affective pictures taken from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS) database). Subjective ratings showed that the experimental task was successful in inducing working memory load as well as affective valence. Additionally, performance measures were analyzed and it was found that behavioral performance decreased with increasing workload as well as negative valence, showing that affective valence can have an effect on cognitive processing. These findings are supported by changes in frontal theta and parietal alpha power, parameters used for measuring of working memory load in the EEG. However, these EEG measures are influenced by the negative valence condition as well and thereby show that detection of working memory load is sensitive to affective contexts. Unexpectedly, we did not find any effects for EEG measures typically used for affective valence detection (Frontal Alpha Asymmetry (FAA)). Therefore we assume that the FAA measure might not be usable if cognitive workload is induced simultaneously. We conclude that future studies should account for potential context-specifity of EEG measures.

  11. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task

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    Maxim S Kuschpel

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i eyes-open resting, (ii listening to music and (iii playing the video game Angry Birds before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the Angry Birds video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity.

  12. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuschpel, Maxim S; Liu, Shuyan; Schad, Daniel J; Heinzel, Stephan; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i) eyes-open resting, (ii) listening to music and (iii) playing the video game "Angry Birds" before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the "Angry Birds" video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity.

  13. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuschpel, Maxim S.; Liu, Shuyan; Schad, Daniel J.; Heinzel, Stephan; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i) eyes-open resting, (ii) listening to music and (iii) playing the video game “Angry Birds” before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the “Angry Birds” video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity. PMID:26579055

  14. Effective connectivity among the working memory regions during preparation for and during performance of the n-back task.

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    Manelis, Anna; Reder, Lynne M

    2014-01-01

    Recent neuroimaging studies have shown that working memory (WM) task difficulty can be decoded from patterns of brain activation in the WM network during preparation to perform those tasks. The inter-regional connectivity among the WM regions during task preparation has not yet been investigated. We examined this question using the graph modeling methods IMaGES and LOFS, applied to the previously published fMRI data of Manelis and Reder (2013). In that study, subjects performed 1-, 2-, and 3-back tasks. Each block of n-back was preceded by a preparation period and followed by a rest period. The analyses of task-related brain activity identified a network of 18 regions that increased in activation from 1- to 3-back (Increase network) and a network of 17 regions that decreased in activation from 1- to 3-back (Decrease network). The graph analyses revealed two types of connectivity sub-networks within the Increase and Decrease networks: "default" and "preparation-related." The "default" connectivity was present not only during task performance, but also during task preparation and during rest. We propose that this sub-network may serve as a core system that allows one to quickly activate cognitive, perceptual and motor systems in response to the relevant stimuli. The "preparation-related" connectivity was present during task preparation and task performance, but not at rest, and depended on the n-back condition. The role of this sub-network may be to pre-activate a connectivity "road map" in order to establish a top-down and bottom-up regulation of attention prior to performance on WM tasks.

  15. Effective connectivity among the working memory regions during preparation for and during performance of the n-back task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna eManelis

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Recent neuroimaging studies have shown that working memory (WM task difficulty can be decoded from patterns of brain activation in the WM network during preparation to perform those tasks. The inter-regional connectivity among the WM regions during task preparation has not yet been investigated. We examined this question using the graph modeling methods IMaGES and LOFS, applied to the previously published fMRI data of Manelis and Reder (2013. In that study, subjects performed 1-, 2-, and 3-back tasks. Each block of n-back was preceded by a preparation period and followed by a rest period. The analyses of task-related brain activity identified a network of 18 regions that increased in activation from 1- to 3-back (Increase network and a network of 17 regions that decreased in activation from 1- to 3-back (Decrease network. The graph analyses revealed two types of connectivity sub-networks within the Increase and Decrease networks: default and preparation-related. The default connectivity was present not only during task performance, but also during task preparation and during rest. We propose that this sub-network may serve as a core system that allows one to quickly activate cognitive, perceptual and motor systems in response to the relevant stimuli. The preparation-related connectivity was present during task preparation and task performance, but not at rest, and depended on the n-back condition. The role of this sub-network may be to pre-activate a connectivity road map in order to establish a top-down and bottom-up regulation of attention prior to performance on WM tasks.

  16. MEG Working Memory N-Back Task Reveals Functional Deficits in Combat-Related Mild Traumatic Brain Injury.

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    Huang, Ming-Xiong; Nichols, Sharon; Robb-Swan, Ashley; Angeles-Quinto, Annemarie; Harrington, Deborah L; Drake, Angela; Huang, Charles W; Song, Tao; Diwakar, Mithun; Risbrough, Victoria B; Matthews, Scott; Clifford, Royce; Cheng, Chung-Kuan; Huang, Jeffrey W; Sinha, Anusha; Yurgil, Kate A; Ji, Zhengwei; Lerman, Imanuel; Lee, Roland R; Baker, Dewleen G

    2018-04-13

    Combat-related mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is a leading cause of sustained cognitive impairment in military service members and Veterans. However, the mechanism of persistent cognitive deficits including working memory (WM) dysfunction is not fully understood in mTBI. Few studies of WM deficits in mTBI have taken advantage of the temporal and frequency resolution afforded by electromagnetic measurements. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG) and an N-back WM task, we investigated functional abnormalities in combat-related mTBI. Study participants included 25 symptomatic active-duty service members or Veterans with combat-related mTBI and 20 healthy controls with similar combat experiences. MEG source-magnitude images were obtained for alpha (8-12 Hz), beta (15-30 Hz), gamma (30-90 Hz), and low-frequency (1-7 Hz) bands. Compared with healthy combat controls, mTBI participants showed increased MEG signals across frequency bands in frontal pole (FP), ventromedial prefrontal cortex, orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), and anterior dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), but decreased MEG signals in anterior cingulate cortex. Hyperactivations in FP, OFC, and anterior dlPFC were associated with slower reaction times. MEG activations in lateral FP also negatively correlated with performance on tests of letter sequencing, verbal fluency, and digit symbol coding. The profound hyperactivations from FP suggest that FP is particularly vulnerable to combat-related mTBI.

  17. Cerebral Inefficient Activation in Schizophrenia Patients and Their Unaffected Parents during the N-Back Working Memory Task: A Family fMRI Study.

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    Sisi Jiang

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that working memory deficits is a core feature of symptomatology of schizophrenia, which can be detected in patients and their unaffected relatives. The impairment of working memory has been found related to the abnormal activity of human brain regions in many functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI studies. This study investigated how brain region activation was altered in schizophrenia and how it was inherited independently from performance deficits.The authors used fMRI method during N-back task to assess working memory related cortical activation in four groups (N = 20 in each group, matching task performance, age, gender and education: schizophrenic patients, their unaffected biological parents, young healthy controls for the patients and older healthy controls for their parents.Compared to healthy controls, patients showed an exaggerated response in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (brodmann area [BA] 46 and bilateral ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, and had reduced activation in bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (BA 9. In the conjunction analysis, the effect of genetic risk (parents versus older control shared significantly overlapped activation with effect of disease (patients versus young control in the right middle frontal gyrus (BA 46 and left inferior parietal gyrus (BA 40.Physiological inefficiency of dorsal prefrontal cortex and compensation involvement of ventral prefrontal cortex in working memory function may one physiological characteristics of schizophrenia. And relatively inefficient activation in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex probably can be a promising intermediate phenotype for schizophrenia.

  18. Functional imaging studies of cognition using 99mTc-HMPAO SPECT: empirical validation using the n-back working memory paradigm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ludwig, Catherine; Ribaupierre, Anik de; Chicherio, Christian; Terraneo, Luc; Magistretti, Pierre; Slosman, Daniel

    2008-01-01

    Functional activation protocols are widely applied for the study of brain-cognition relations. Only few take advantage of the intrinsic characteristics of SPECT, particularly those allowing cognitive assessment outside of the camera, in settings close to the standard clinical or laboratory ones. The purpose of the study was to assess the feasibility of a split-dose activation protocol with 99m Tc-HMPAO using low irradiation dose. A two-scans protocol was applied to 12 healthy young volunteers using 270 MBq of 99m Tc-HMPAO per scan, with each image associated to a particular experimental condition of the verbal n-back working memory task (0-back, 2-back). Subtraction method was used to identify regional brain activity related to the task. Voxel-wise statistical analysis showed left lateralized activity associated with the 2-back task, compared to the 0-back task. Activated regions, mainly prefrontal and parietal, were similar to those observed in previous fMRI and 15 O-PET studies. The results support the use of 99m Tc-HMPAO SPECT for the investigation of brain-cognition relations and demonstrate the feasibility of optimal quality images despite low radiopharmaceutical doses. The findings also acknowledge the use of HMPAO as a radioligand to capture neuro-energetic modulations linked to cognitive activity. They encourage extending the application of the described activation protocol to clinical populations. (orig.)

  19. Functional imaging studies of cognition using {sup 99m}Tc-HMPAO SPECT: empirical validation using the n-back working memory paradigm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ludwig, Catherine; Ribaupierre, Anik de [University of Geneva, Center for Interdisciplinary Gerontology, Geneva (Switzerland); Chicherio, Christian [Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Center for Lifespan Psychology, Berlin (Germany); Terraneo, Luc [Geneva University Hospitals, Service of Nuclear Medicine, Geneva (Switzerland); Magistretti, Pierre [EPFL, Brain Mind Institute, Lausanne (Switzerland); Slosman, Daniel [Clinique Generale-Beaulieu, Nuclear Medicine Institute, Geneva (Switzerland)

    2008-04-15

    Functional activation protocols are widely applied for the study of brain-cognition relations. Only few take advantage of the intrinsic characteristics of SPECT, particularly those allowing cognitive assessment outside of the camera, in settings close to the standard clinical or laboratory ones. The purpose of the study was to assess the feasibility of a split-dose activation protocol with {sup 99m}Tc-HMPAO using low irradiation dose. A two-scans protocol was applied to 12 healthy young volunteers using 270 MBq of {sup 99m}Tc-HMPAO per scan, with each image associated to a particular experimental condition of the verbal n-back working memory task (0-back, 2-back). Subtraction method was used to identify regional brain activity related to the task. Voxel-wise statistical analysis showed left lateralized activity associated with the 2-back task, compared to the 0-back task. Activated regions, mainly prefrontal and parietal, were similar to those observed in previous fMRI and {sup 15}O-PET studies. The results support the use of {sup 99m}Tc-HMPAO SPECT for the investigation of brain-cognition relations and demonstrate the feasibility of optimal quality images despite low radiopharmaceutical doses. The findings also acknowledge the use of HMPAO as a radioligand to capture neuro-energetic modulations linked to cognitive activity. They encourage extending the application of the described activation protocol to clinical populations. (orig.)

  20. Evidence of a modality-dependent role of the cerebellum in working memory? An fMRI study comparing verbal and abstract n-back tasks.

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    Hautzel, Hubertus; Mottaghy, Felix M; Specht, Karsten; Müller, Hans-Wilhelm; Krause, Bernd J

    2009-10-01

    In working memory (WM), functional imaging studies demonstrate cerebellar involvement indicating a cognitive role of the cerebellum. These cognitive contributions were predominantly interpreted as part of the phonological loop within the Baddeley model of WM. However, those underlying investigations were performed in the context of visual verbal WM which could pose a bias when interpreting the results. The aim of this fMRI study was to address the question of whether the cerebellum supports additional aspects of WM in the context of higher cognitive functions. Furthermore, laterality effects were investigated to further disentangle the cerebellar role in the context of the phonological loop and the visuospatial sketchpad. A direct comparison of verbal and abstract visual WM was performed in 17 young volunteers by applying a 2-back paradigm and extracting the % change in BOLD signal from the fMRI data. To minimize potential verbal strategies, Attneave and Arnoult shapes of non-nameable objects were chosen for the abstract condition. The analyses revealed no significant differences in verbal vs. abstract WM. Moreover, no laterality effects were demonstrated in both verbal and abstract WM. These results provide further evidence of a broader cognitive involvement of the cerebellum in WM that is not only confined to the phonological loop but also supports central executive subfunctions. The fact that no lateralization effects are found might be attributed to the characteristics of the n-back paradigm which emphasizes central executive subfunctions over the subsidiary slave systems.

  1. Reduced but broader prefrontal activity in patients with schizophrenia during n-back working memory tasks: a multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy study.

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    Koike, Shinsuke; Takizawa, Ryu; Nishimura, Yukika; Kinou, Masaru; Kawasaki, Shingo; Kasai, Kiyoto

    2013-09-01

    Caudal regions of the prefrontal cortex, including the dorsolateral (DLPFC) and ventrolateral (VLPFC) prefrontal cortex, are involved in essential cognitive functions such as working memory. In contrast, more rostral regions, such as the frontopolar cortex (FpC), have integrative functions among cognitive functions and thereby contribute crucially to real-world social activity. Previous functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have shown patients with schizophrenia had different DLPFC activity pattern in response to cognitive load changes compared to healthy controls; however, the spatial relationship between the caudal and rostral prefrontal activation has not been evaluated under less-constrained conditions. Twenty-six patients with schizophrenia and 26 age-, sex-, and premorbid-intelligence-matched healthy controls participated in this study. Hemodynamic changes during n-back working memory tasks with different cognitive loads were measured using multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Healthy controls showed significant task-related activity in the bilateral VLPFC and significant task-related decreased activity in the DLPFC, with greater signal changes when the task required more cognitive load. In contrast, patients with schizophrenia showed activation in the more rostral regions, including bilateral DLPFC and FpC. Neither decreased activity nor greater activation in proportion to elevated cognitive load occurred. This multi-channel NIRS study demonstrated that activation intensity did not increase in patients with schizophrenia associated with cognitive load changes, suggesting hypo-frontality as cognitive impairment in schizophrenia. On the other hand, patients had broader prefrontal activity in areas such as the bilateral DLPFC and FpC regions, thus suggesting a hyper-frontality compensatory response. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Tarefa N-Back Visual: construção de um instrumento de avaliação de memória de trabalho para crianças = Visual N-Back Task: development of an assessment instrument to working memory for children

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    Lima, Mariana

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Prejuízos em tarefas que avaliem a WM têm sido observados em estudos com crianças acometidas por trans- tornos psiquiátricos com características neurodesenvolvimentais. Objetivo: elaborar estímulos visuais para serem usados na tarefa N-Back para crianças de 6 a 12 anos. Método: serão apresentadas fotos selecionadas de animais. Realizou-se um estudo com 38 crianças. Resultados: observou-se que os animais dos estímulos do N-Back são facilmente reconhecidos pelas crianças. Conclusão: a partir deste estudo preliminar, a tarefa N-Back mostrou-se apta à utilização em larga escala. Os dados deverão receber medidas de padronização e normatização

  3. Mapping of the Underlying Neural Mechanisms of Maintenance and Manipulation in Visuo-Spatial Working Memory Using An n-back Mental Rotation Task: A Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study.

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    Lamp, Gemma; Alexander, Bonnie; Laycock, Robin; Crewther, David P; Crewther, Sheila G

    2016-01-01

    Mapping of the underlying neural mechanisms of visuo-spatial working memory (WM) has been shown to consistently elicit activity in right hemisphere dominant fronto-parietal networks. However to date, the bulk of neuroimaging literature has focused largely on the maintenance aspect of visuo-spatial WM, with a scarcity of research into the aspects of WM involving manipulation of information. Thus, this study aimed to compare maintenance-only with maintenance and manipulation of visuo-spatial stimuli (3D cube shapes) utilizing a 1-back task while functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans were acquired. Sixteen healthy participants (9 women, M = 23.94 years, SD = 2.49) were required to perform the 1-back task with or without mentally rotating the shapes 90° on a vertical axis. When no rotation was required (maintenance-only condition), a right hemispheric lateralization was revealed across fronto-parietal areas. However, when the task involved maintaining and manipulating the same stimuli through 90° rotation, activation was primarily seen in the bilateral parietal lobe and left fusiform gyrus. The findings confirm that the well-established right lateralized fronto-parietal networks are likely to underlie simple maintenance of visuo-spatial stimuli. The results also suggest that the added demand of manipulation of information maintained online appears to require further neural recruitment of functionally related areas. In particular mental rotation of visuospatial stimuli required bilateral parietal areas, and the left fusiform gyrus potentially to maintain a categorical or object representation. It can be concluded that WM is a complex neural process involving the interaction of an increasingly large network.

  4. The influence of N-back working memory training with Gabor signal on visual function and fluid intelligence%基于Gabor视标的N-back工作记忆训练对视功能和流体智力的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王丽萍; 林珊珊; 邱飞岳; 陈宏

    2012-01-01

    Objective To investigate influence on adults'visual function and fluid intelligence with N-back working memory training based on Gabor signal.Methods Controlling group including 13 adults had no training,training group including 14 adults received an eight-days training,half an hour a day.The stimulus was N-back training which has on improved Gabor signal with adjustable spatial frequency and contrast sensitivity.The contrast sensitivity and fluid intelligence were record using OPTEC 6500 and Raven's Standard Progressive Matrices before and after training,then the data was analyzed and processed by SPSS.Results Contrast sensitivity:there was a siguificant different of the contrast sensitivity between pretest and posttest ( ( 1.93 ± 0.17 ) log,( 1.76 ±0.20 ) log) in training group ( t =-4.579,P =0.001 ).Fluid intelligence:there was a significant different of fluid intelligence between pretest and posttest( ( 129.9 ± 9.0 ) scores,( 113.7 4-16.0 ) scores ) in training group ( t =-4.373,P =0.001 ),and superior to controlling group,which also had a statistical significance (F =1.353,P =0.004).Conclusion The method of N-back working memory training based on Gabor signal not only enhances working memory and fluid intelligence,but also improves the visual function effectively,and more various effect is acquired comparing to traditional training method.%目的 探索基于Gabor视标的N-back工作记忆训练对成人视觉功能和流体智力的影响作用.方法 控制组(13人)不参加训练,对试验组(14人)进行为期8d,每天约30 min的训练.训练任务以N-back方式,视觉刺激改进为Gabor视标且空间频率和对比度调整.采用OPTEC6500和瑞文标准推理测验,记录训练前和训练后的对比敏感度和流体智力数据,利用SPSS软件对数据进行分析处理.结果 对比敏感度:试验组训练后对比敏感度高于训练前[分别为(1.93 ±0.17)个log单位,(1.76±0.20)个log单位],差异有统计学意义(t=-4.579,P=0

  5. Control of Interference during Working Memory Updating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szmalec, Arnaud; Verbruggen, Frederick; Vandierendonck, Andre; Kemps, Eva

    2011-01-01

    The current study examined the nature of the processes underlying working memory updating. In 4 experiments using the n-back paradigm, the authors demonstrate that continuous updating of items in working memory prevents strong binding of those items to their contexts in working memory, and hence leads to an increased susceptibility to proactive…

  6. Measuring Working Memory Deficits in Aphasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Jamie F.; Murray, Laura L.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: Many adults with aphasia demonstrate concomitant deficits in working memory (WM), but such deficits are difficult to quantify because of a lack of validated measures as well as the complex interdependence between language and WM. We examined the feasibility, reliability, and internal consistency of an "n"-back task for…

  7. The effects of a distracting N-back task on recognition memory are reduced by negative emotional intensity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciano G Buratto

    Full Text Available Memory performance is usually impaired when participants have to encode information while performing a concurrent task. Recent studies using recall tasks have found that emotional items are more resistant to such cognitive depletion effects than non-emotional items. However, when recognition tasks are used, the same effect is more elusive as recent recognition studies have obtained contradictory results. In two experiments, we provide evidence that negative emotional content can reliably reduce the effects of cognitive depletion on recognition memory only if stimuli with high levels of emotional intensity are used. In particular, we found that recognition performance for realistic pictures was impaired by a secondary 3-back working memory task during encoding if stimuli were emotionally neutral or had moderate levels of negative emotionality. In contrast, when negative pictures with high levels of emotional intensity were used, the detrimental effects of the secondary task were significantly attenuated.

  8. The Effects of a Distracting N-Back Task on Recognition Memory Are Reduced by Negative Emotional Intensity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buratto, Luciano G.; Pottage, Claire L.; Brown, Charity; Morrison, Catriona M.; Schaefer, Alexandre

    2014-01-01

    Memory performance is usually impaired when participants have to encode information while performing a concurrent task. Recent studies using recall tasks have found that emotional items are more resistant to such cognitive depletion effects than non-emotional items. However, when recognition tasks are used, the same effect is more elusive as recent recognition studies have obtained contradictory results. In two experiments, we provide evidence that negative emotional content can reliably reduce the effects of cognitive depletion on recognition memory only if stimuli with high levels of emotional intensity are used. In particular, we found that recognition performance for realistic pictures was impaired by a secondary 3-back working memory task during encoding if stimuli were emotionally neutral or had moderate levels of negative emotionality. In contrast, when negative pictures with high levels of emotional intensity were used, the detrimental effects of the secondary task were significantly attenuated. PMID:25330251

  9. Effects of verbal and nonverbal interference on spatial and object visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Postle, Bradley R; Desposito, Mark; Corkin, Suzanne

    2005-03-01

    We tested the hypothesis that a verbal coding mechanism is necessarily engaged by object, but not spatial, visual working memory tasks. We employed a dual-task procedure that paired n-back working memory tasks with domain-specific distractor trials inserted into each interstimulus interval of the n-back tasks. In two experiments, object n-back performance demonstrated greater sensitivity to verbal distraction, whereas spatial n-back performance demonstrated greater sensitivity to motion distraction. Visual object and spatial working memory may differ fundamentally in that the mnemonic representation of featural characteristics of objects incorporates a verbal (perhaps semantic) code, whereas the mnemonic representation of the location of objects does not. Thus, the processes supporting working memory for these two types of information may differ in more ways than those dictated by the "what/where" organization of the visual system, a fact more easily reconciled with a component process than a memory systems account of working memory function.

  10. Effects of chewing in working memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirano, Yoshiyuki; Obata, Takayuki; Kashikura, Kenichi; Nonaka, Hiroi; Tachibana, Atsumichi; Ikehira, Hiroo; Onozuka, Minoru

    2008-05-09

    It has been generally suggested that chewing produces an enhancing effect on cognitive performance-related aspects of memory by the test battery. Furthermore, recent studies have shown that chewing is associated with activation of various brain regions, including the prefrontal cortex. However, little is known about the relation between cognitive performances affected by chewing and the neuronal activity in specified regions in the brain. We therefore examined the effects of chewing on neuronal activities in the brain during a working memory task using fMRI. The subjects chewed gum, without odor and taste components, between continuously performed two- or three-back (n-back) working memory tasks. Chewing increased the BOLD signals in the middle frontal gyrus (Brodmann's areas 9 and 46) in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex during the n-back tasks. Furthermore, there were more prominent activations in the right premotor cortex, precuneus, thalamus, hippocampus and inferior parietal lobe during the n-back tasks after the chewing trial. These results suggest that chewing may accelerate or recover the process of working memory besides inducing improvement in the arousal level by the chewing motion.

  11. Working Memory Training Does Not Improve Intelligence in Healthy Young Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chooi, Weng-Tink; Thompson, Lee A.

    2012-01-01

    Jaeggi and her colleagues claimed that they were able to improve fluid intelligence by training working memory. Subjects who trained their working memory on a dual n-back task for a period of time showed significant improvements in working memory span tasks and fluid intelligence tests such as the Raven's Progressive Matrices and the Bochumer…

  12. Complex Span versus Updating Tasks of Working Memory: The Gap Is Not that Deep

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmiedek, Florian; Hildebrandt, Andrea; Lovden, Martin; Wilhelm, Oliver; Lindenberger, Ulman

    2009-01-01

    How to best measure working memory capacity is an issue of ongoing debate. Besides established complex span tasks, which combine short-term memory demands with generally unrelated secondary tasks, there exists a set of paradigms characterized by continuous and simultaneous updating of several items in working memory, such as the n-back, memory…

  13. Is working memory still working?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, A D

    2001-11-01

    The current state of A. D. Baddeley and G. J. Hitch's (1974) multicomponent working memory model is reviewed. The phonological and visuospatial subsystems have been extensively investigated, leading both to challenges over interpretation of individual phenomena and to more detailed attempts to model the processes underlying the subsystems. Analysis of the controlling central executive has proved more challenging, leading to a proposed clarification in which the executive is assumed to be a limited capacity attentional system, aided by a newly postulated fourth system, the episodic buffer. Current interest focuses most strongly on the link between working memory and long-term memory and on the processes allowing the integration of information from the component subsystems. The model has proved valuable in accounting for data from a wide range of participant groups under a rich array of task conditions. Working memory does still appear to be working.

  14. Models of Working Memory

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Miyake, Akira

    1997-01-01

    .... Understanding the mechanisms and structures underlying working memory is, hence, one of the most important scientific issues that need to be addressed to improve the efficiency and performance...

  15. Caffeine enhances working memory for extraverts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smillie, Luke D; Gökçen, Elif

    2010-12-01

    Using a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled design we examined the effects of caffeine on working memory (WM) as a function of extraverted personality. Participants (N=59) received 200mg of caffeine and placebo in counterbalanced-order over two sessions prior to completing a 'N-Back' WM paradigm. Findings revealed that caffeine administration relative to the placebo condition resulted in heightened WM performance, but only for extraverted participants. We suggest based on previous theory and research that dopamine function (DA) may be the most plausible mechanism underlying this finding. Crown Copyright © 2010. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. The Effect of Dual N-Back Task Training on Phonological Memory Expansion in Adult EFL Learners at the Beginner Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farvardin, Mohammad Taghi; Afghari, Akbar; Koosha, Mansour

    2014-01-01

    One of the most influential models of working memory (WM) is the one developed by Baddeley (1986, 2000, 2003) which views WM comprising several components--a central executive, an episodic buffer, the visuo-spatial sketchpad, and the phonological loop. The phonological loop or phonological memory (PM) deals with the temporary storage of verbal and…

  17. Hearing aid noise suppression and working memory function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neher, Tobias; Wagener, Kirsten C.; Fischer, Rosa-Linde

    2018-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Research findings concerning the relation between benefit from hearing aid (HA) noise suppression and working memory function are inconsistent. The current study thus investigated the effects of three noise suppression algorithms on auditory working memory and the relation with reading......-to-noise ratio (SNR) improvement. Auditory working memory was assessed at +6 dB SNR using listening span and N-back paradigms. STUDY SAMPLE: Twenty experienced HA users ages 55-80 with large differences in reading span. RESULTS: For the listening span measurements, there was an influence of HA setting...... on sentence-final word recognition and recall, with the directional microphones leading to ~6% better performance than the single-channel noise reduction. For the N-back measurements, there was substantial test-retest variability and no influence of HA setting. No interactions with reading span were found...

  18. Hearing aid noise suppression and working memory function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fischer, Rosa-Linde; Neher, Tobias; Wagener, Kirsten C.

    Research findings concerning the relation between outcome from hearing aid (HA) noise suppression and working memory function are unclear. The current study thus investigated the effects of three noise suppression algorithms on auditory working memory as well as the relation with reading span......) improvement. Auditory working memory was assessed at +6 dB SNR using a listening span and an N-back paradigm. Twenty experienced HA users aged 55-80 yr with large differences in reading span took part. For the listening span measurements, there was an influence of HA setting on final word recognition...... and recall, with the directional microphone setting leading to approx. 6% better performance than the single-channel noise reduction setting. For the N-back measurements, there was substantial test-retest variability and no influence of HA setting. No interactions with reading span were found. These results...

  19. Working Memory and Attitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Eun Sook; Reid, Norman

    2009-01-01

    Working memory capacity has been shown to be an important factor in controlling understanding in the sciences. Attitudes related to studies in the sciences are also known to be important in relation to success in learning. It might be argued that if working memory capacity is a rate controlling feature of learning and success in understanding…

  20. Working memory training improves visual short-term memory capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwarb, Hillary; Nail, Jayde; Schumacher, Eric H

    2016-01-01

    Since antiquity, philosophers, theologians, and scientists have been interested in human memory. However, researchers today are still working to understand the capabilities, boundaries, and architecture. While the storage capabilities of long-term memory are seemingly unlimited (Bahrick, J Exp Psychol 113:1-2, 1984), working memory, or the ability to maintain and manipulate information held in memory, seems to have stringent capacity limits (e.g., Cowan, Behav Brain Sci 24:87-185, 2001). Individual differences, however, do exist and these differences can often predict performance on a wide variety of tasks (cf. Engle What is working-memory capacity? 297-314, 2001). Recently, researchers have promoted the enticing possibility that simple behavioral training can expand the limits of working memory which indeed may also lead to improvements on other cognitive processes as well (cf. Morrison and Chein, Psychol Bull Rev 18:46-60 2011). However, initial investigations across a wide variety of cognitive functions have produced mixed results regarding the transferability of training-related improvements. Across two experiments, the present research focuses on the benefit of working memory training on visual short-term memory capacity-a cognitive process that has received little attention in the training literature. Data reveal training-related improvement of global measures of visual short-term memory as well as of measures of the independent sub-processes that contribute to capacity (Awh et al., Psychol Sci 18(7):622-628, 2007). These results suggest that the ability to inhibit irrelevant information within and between trials is enhanced via n-back training allowing for selective improvement on untrained tasks. Additionally, we highlight a potential limitation of the standard adaptive training procedure and propose a modified design to ensure variability in the training environment.

  1. Reading and Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan

    1984-01-01

    Outlines the concept of working memory, with particular reference to a hypothetical subcomponent, the articulatory loop. Discusses the role of the loop in fluent adult reading, then examines the reading performance of adults with deficits in auditory verbal memory, showing that a capacity to articulate is not necessary for the effective…

  2. Models of Working Memory

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Miyake, Akira

    1997-01-01

    Working memory is a basic cognitive mechanism (or set of mechanisms) that is responsible for keeping track of multiple task related goals and subgoals, or integrating multiple sources of information...

  3. Working Memory and Neurofeedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    YuLeung To, Eric; Abbott, Kathy; Foster, Dale S; Helmer, D'Arcy

    2016-01-01

    Impairments in working memory are typically associated with impairments in other cognitive faculties such as attentional processes and short-term memory. This paper briefly introduces neurofeedback as a treatment modality in general, and, more specifically, we review several of the current modalities successfully used in neurofeedback (NF) for the treatment of working memory deficits. Two case studies are presented to illustrate how neurofeedback is applied in treatment. The development of Low Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography (LORETA) and its application in neurofeedback now makes it possible to specifically target deep cortical/subcortical brain structures. Developments in neuroscience concerning neural networks, combined with highly specific yet practical NF technologies, makes neurofeedback of particular interest to neuropsychological practice, including the emergence of specific methodologies for treating very difficult working memory (WM) problems.

  4. The impact of auditory working memory training on the fronto-parietal working memory network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneiders, Julia A; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel

    2012-01-01

    Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal) working memory task or whether it generalizes to a (across-modal) visual working memory task. We used adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal) auditory but not for the (across-modal) visual transfer task. Training-induced activation decreases in the auditory transfer task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extents intra-modal effects in the prefrontal cortex to the auditory modality. As the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information, these results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes. Furthermore, task-unspecific (amodal) activation decreases in the visual and auditory transfer task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demand on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with amodal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual transfer task reported previously.

  5. The impact of auditory working memory training on the fronto-parietal working memory network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneiders, Julia A.; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel

    2012-01-01

    Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal) working memory task or whether it generalizes to a (across-modal) visual working memory task. We used adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal) auditory but not for the (across-modal) visual transfer task. Training-induced activation decreases in the auditory transfer task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extents intra-modal effects in the prefrontal cortex to the auditory modality. As the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information, these results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes. Furthermore, task-unspecific (amodal) activation decreases in the visual and auditory transfer task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demand on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with amodal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual transfer task reported previously. PMID:22701418

  6. The Impact of Auditory Working Memory Training on the Fronto-Parietal Working Memory Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia eSchneiders

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal working memory task or whether it generalizes to an (across-modal visual working memory task. We used an adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal auditory but not for the (across-modal visual 2-back task. Training-induced activation changes in the auditory 2-back task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extends intra-modal effects to the auditory modality. These results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes as in the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information. By this, these effects are analogical to the activation decreases in the right middle frontal gyrus for the visual modality in our previous study. Furthermore, task-unspecific (across-modal activation decreases in the visual and auditory 2-back task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demands on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with across-modal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual 2-back task reported previously.

  7. Developmental trajectories in primary schoolchildren using n-back task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mónica eLópez-Vicente

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Neuropsychological instruments to assess cognitive trajectories during childhood in epidemiological studies are needed. This would improve neurodevelopment characterization in order to identify its potential determinants. We aimed to study whether repeated measures of n-back, a working memory task, detect developmental trajectories in schoolchildren during a one-year follow-up.Methods: We administered the n-back task to 2,897 healthy children aged 7-11 years old from 39 schools in Barcelona (Spain. The task consisted of 2 levels of complexity or loads (2- and 3-back and 2 different stimuli (numbers and words. Participants performed the task four times from January 2012 to March 2013. To study the trajectories during the follow-up, we performed linear mixed-effects models including school, individual and age as random effects.Results: We observed improvements related to age in n-back outcomes d’, HRT and accuracy, as well as reduced cognitive growth at older ages in d’ and HRT. Greater improvements in performance were observed at younger ages, in 2-back, in verbal rather than numerical stimuli and in girls compared to boys. Boys responded faster at baseline, while girls showed increased growth in 2-back numbers. Children with ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder symptoms (15% of boys and 6% of girls had a lower working memory at baseline, but they showed similar cognitive growth trajectories in numbers variants of the task, as compared to children without ADHD symptoms. However, the age-related improvement in response speed was not observed in children with ADHD symptoms. Conclusions: Changes in n-back outcomes reflected developmental trajectories in one-year follow-up. The present results suggest that the repeated administration of this task can be used to study the factors that may alter the cognitive development during childhood.

  8. Audiospatial and Visuospatial Working Memory in 6–13 Year Old School Children

    OpenAIRE

    Vuontela, Virve; Steenari, Maija-Riikka; Carlson, Synnöve; Koivisto, Juha; Fjällberg, Mika; Aronen, Eeva T.

    2003-01-01

    The neural processes subserving working memory, and brain structures underlying this system, continue to develop during childhood. We investigated the effects of age and gender on audiospatial and visuospatial working memory in a nonclinical sample of school-aged children using n-back tasks. The results showed that auditory and visual working memory performance improves with age, suggesting functional maturation of underlying cognitive processes and brain areas. The gender differences found i...

  9. N-Back auditory test performance in normal individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Tomé Gonçalves

    Full Text Available Abstract The working memory construct refers to the capacity to maintain information for a limited time. Objectives: To devise stimuli and adapt the 5-back test and to verify the effect of age in normal Brazilian individuals. Methods: 31 healthy adults (15 young adults and 16 older adults were evaluated by batteries of auditory stimuli to verify the inter-group differences (age effect in working memory span, total correct answers and intrusions, and the intra-group effect of type of stimulus. Results: There was no intra-group stimulus effect. Individuals from both groups processed di and tri-syllables similarly. No difference between groups (no age effect was observed for any N-Back parameters: total score, span, number of intrusions, in either di or tri-syllable presentation. Conclusion: the processing capacity of 5 elements in phonological working memory was not affected by age.

  10. Quantifiers and working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Szymanik, J.; Zajenkowski, M.

    2010-01-01

    The paper presents a study examining the role of working memory in quantifier verification. We created situations similar to the span task to compare numerical quantifiers of low and high rank, parity quantifiers and proportional quantifiers. The results enrich and support the data obtained

  11. Quantifiers and working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Szymanik, J.; Zajenkowski, M.

    2009-01-01

    The paper presents a study examining the role of working memory in quantifier verification. We created situations similar to the span task to compare numerical quantifiers of low and high rank, parity quantifiers and proportional quantifiers. The results enrich and support the data obtained

  12. Hearing aid noise suppression and working memory function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neher, Tobias; Wagener, Kirsten C.; Fischer, Rosa-Linde

    2018-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Research findings concerning the relation between benefit from hearing aid (HA) noise suppression and working memory function are inconsistent. The current study thus investigated the effects of three noise suppression algorithms on auditory working memory and the relation with reading......-to-noise ratio (SNR) improvement. Auditory working memory was assessed at +6 dB SNR using listening span and N-back paradigms. STUDY SAMPLE: Twenty experienced HA users ages 55-80 with large differences in reading span. RESULTS: For the listening span measurements, there was an influence of HA setting....... CONCLUSIONS: HA noise suppression may affect the recognition and recall of speech at positive SNRs, irrespective of individual reading span. Future work should improve the reliability of the auditory working memory measurements....

  13. Detailed sensory memory, sloppy working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sligte, I.G.; Vandenbroucke, A.R.E.; Scholte, H.S.; Lamme, V.A.F.

    2010-01-01

    Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity

  14. Neurocognitive architecture of working memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eriksson, Johan; Vogel, Edward K.; Lansner, Anders; Bergström, Fredrik; Nyberg, Lars

    2015-01-01

    The crucial role of working memory for temporary information processing and guidance of complex behavior has been recognized for many decades. There is emerging consensus that working memory maintenance results from the interactions among long-term memory representations and basic processes, including attention, that are instantiated as reentrant loops between frontal and posterior cortical areas, as well as subcortical structures. The nature of such interactions can account for capacity limitations, lifespan changes, and restricted transfer after working-memory training. Recent data and models indicate that working memory may also be based on synaptic plasticity, and that working memory can operate on non-consciously perceived information. PMID:26447571

  15. Detailed sensory memory, sloppy working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sligte, Ilja G; Vandenbroucke, Annelinde R E; Scholte, H Steven; Lamme, Victor A F

    2010-01-01

    Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail) of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a change detection task that measures the capacity of all three forms of VSTM, and we added an identification display after each change trial that required people to identify the "pre-change" object. Accurate change detection plus pre-change identification requires subjects to have a high-resolution representation of the "pre-change" object, whereas change detection or identification only can be based on the hunch that something has changed, without exactly knowing what was presented before. We observed that people maintained 6.1 objects in iconic memory, 4.6 objects in fragile VSTM, and 2.1 objects in visual working memory. Moreover, when people detected the change, they could also identify the pre-change object on 88% of the iconic memory trials, on 71% of the fragile VSTM trials and merely on 53% of the visual working memory trials. This suggests that people maintain many high-resolution representations in iconic memory and fragile VSTM, but only one high-resolution object representation in visual working memory.

  16. Normative data on the n-back task for children and young adolescents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santiago ePelegrina

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The n-back task is a frequently used measure of working memory (WM in cognitive neuroscience research contexts, and it has become widely adopted in other areas over the last decade. This study aimed to obtain normative data for the n-back task from a large sample of children and adolescents. To this end, a computerized verbal n-back task with three levels of WM load (1-back, 2-back and 3-back was administered to 3722 Spanish school children aged 7–13 years. Results showed an overall age-related increase in performance for the different levels of difficulty. This trend was less pronounced at 1-back than at 2-back when hits were considered. Gender differences were also observed, with girls outperforming boys although taking more time to respond. The theoretical implications of these results are discussed. Normative data stratified by age and gender for the three WM load levels are provided.

  17. Normative data on the n-back task for children and young adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelegrina, Santiago; Lechuga, M Teresa; García-Madruga, Juan A; Elosúa, M Rosa; Macizo, Pedro; Carreiras, Manuel; Fuentes, Luis J; Bajo, M Teresa

    2015-01-01

    The n-back task is a frequently used measure of working memory (WM) in cognitive neuroscience research contexts, and it has become widely adopted in other areas over the last decade. This study aimed to obtain normative data for the n-back task from a large sample of children and adolescents. To this end, a computerized verbal n-back task with three levels of WM load (1-back, 2-back, and 3-back) was administered to 3722 Spanish school children aged 7-13 years. Results showed an overall age-related increase in performance for the different levels of difficulty. This trend was less pronounced at 1-back than at 2-back when hits were considered. Gender differences were also observed, with girls outperforming boys although taking more time to respond. The theoretical implications of these results are discussed. Normative data stratified by age and gender for the three WM load levels are provided.

  18. Detailed Sensory Memory, Sloppy Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Sligte, Ilja G.; Vandenbroucke, Annelinde R. E.; Scholte, H. Steven; Lamme, Victor A. F.

    2010-01-01

    Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail) of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a...

  19. A randomised controlled trial investigating the benefits of adaptive working memory training for working memory capacity and attentional control in high worriers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotton, Matthew; Derakshan, Nazanin; Fox, Elaine

    2018-01-01

    The process of worry has been associated with reductions in working memory capacity and availability of resources necessary for efficient attentional control. This, in turn, can lead to escalating worry. Recent investigations into working memory training have shown improvements in attentional control and cognitive performance in high trait-anxious individuals and individuals with sub-clinical depression. The current randomised controlled trial investigated the effects of 15 days of adaptive n-back working memory training, or an active control task, on working memory capacity, attentional control and worry in a sample of high worriers. Pre-training, post-training and one-month follow-up measures of working memory capacity were assessed using a Change Detection task, while a Flanker task was used to assess attentional control. A breathing focus task was used as a behavioural measure of worry in addition to a number of self-report assessments of worry and anxiety. Overall there was no difference between the active training and the active control condition with both groups demonstrating similar improvements in working memory capacity and worry, post-training and at follow-up. However, training-related improvements on the n-back task were associated with gains in working memory capacity and reductions in worry symptoms in the active training condition. These results highlight the need for further research investigating the role of individual differences in working memory training. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  20. Working memory maintenance is sufficient to reduce state anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balderston, Nicholas L; Quispe-Escudero, David; Hale, Elizabeth; Davis, Andrew; O'Connell, Katherine; Ernst, Monique; Grillon, Christian

    2016-11-01

    According to the attentional control theory (ACT) proposed by Eysenck and colleagues, anxiety interferes with cognitive processing by prioritizing bottom-up attentional processes over top-down attentional processes, leading to competition for access to limited resources in working memory, particularly the central executive (Eysenck, Derakshan, Santos, & Calvo, ). However, previous research using the n-back working memory task suggests that working memory load also reduces state anxiety. Assuming that similar mechanisms underlie the effect of anxiety on cognition, and the effect of cognition on anxiety, one possible implication of the ACT would suggest that the reduction of state anxiety with increasing working memory load is driven by activation of central executive attentional control processes. We tested this hypothesis using the Sternberg working memory paradigm, where maintenance processes can be isolated from central executive processes (Altamura et al., ; Sternberg, ). Consistent with the n-back results, subjects showed decreased state anxiety during the maintenance period of high-load trials relative to low-load trials, suggesting that maintenance processes alone are sufficient to achieve this state anxiety reduction. Given that the Sternberg task does not require central executive engagement, these results are not consistent with an implication of the ACT where the cognition/anxiety relationship and anxiety/cognition relationship are mediated by similar central executive mechanisms. Instead, we propose an extension of the ACT such that engaging working memory maintenance suppresses state anxiety in a load-dependent manner. Furthermore, we hypothesize that the efficacy of this effect may moderate the effect of trait anxiety on cognition. Published 2016. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  1. Effects of Cogmed working memory training on cognitive performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etherton, Joseph L; Oberle, Crystal D; Rhoton, Jayson; Ney, Ashley

    2018-04-16

    Research on the cognitive benefits of working memory training programs has produced inconsistent results. Such research has frequently used laboratory-specific training tasks, or dual-task n-back training. The current study used the commercial Cogmed Working Memory (WM) Training program, involving several different training tasks involving visual and auditory input. Healthy college undergraduates were assigned to either the full Cogmed training program of 25, 40-min training sessions; an abbreviated Cogmed program of 25, 20-min training sessions; or a no-contact control group. Pretest and posttest measures included multiple measures of attention, working memory, fluid intelligence, and executive functions. Although improvement was observed for the full training group for a digit span task, no training-related improvement was observed for any of the other measures. Results of the study suggest that WM training does not improve performance on unrelated tasks or enhance other cognitive abilities.

  2. The relationship between sustained inattentional blindness and working memory capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beanland, Vanessa; Chan, Esther Hiu Chung

    2016-04-01

    Inattentional blindness, whereby observers fail to detect unexpected stimuli, has been robustly demonstrated in a range of situations. Originally research focused primarily on how stimulus characteristics and task demands affect inattentional blindness, but increasingly studies are exploring the influence of observer characteristics on the detection of unexpected stimuli. It has been proposed that individual differences in working memory capacity predict inattentional blindness, on the assumption that higher working memory capacity confers greater attentional capacity for processing unexpected stimuli. Unfortunately, empirical investigations of the association between inattentional blindness and working memory capacity have produced conflicting findings. To help clarify this relationship, we examined the relationship between inattentional blindness and working memory capacity in two samples (Ns = 195, 147) of young adults. We used three common variants of sustained inattentional blindness tasks, systematically manipulating the salience of the unexpected stimulus and primary task practice. Working memory capacity, measured by automated operation span (both Experiments 1 & 2) and N-back (Experiment 1 only) tasks, did not predict detection of the unexpected stimulus in any of the inattentional blindness tasks tested. Together with previous research, this undermines claims that there is a robust relationship between inattentional blindness and working memory capacity. Rather, it appears that any relationship between inattentional blindness and working memory is either too small to have practical significance or is moderated by other factors and consequently varies with attributes such as the sample characteristics within a given study.

  3. Detailed sensory memory, sloppy working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilja G Sligte

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Visual short-term memory (VSTM enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a change detection task that measures the capacity of all three forms of VSTM, and we added an identification display after each change trial that required people to identify the pre-change object. Accurate change detection plus pre-change identification requires subjects to have a high-resolution representation of the pre-change object, whereas change detection or identification only can be based on the hunch that something has changed, without exactly knowing what was presented before. We observed that people maintained 6.1 objects in iconic memory, 4.6 objects in fragile VSTM and 2.1 objects in visual working memory. Moreover, when people detected the change, they could also identify the pre-change object on 88 percent of the iconic memory trials, on 71 percent of the fragile VSTM trials and merely on 53 percent of the visual working memory trials. This suggests that people maintain many high-resolution representations in iconic memory and fragile VSTM, but only one high-resolution object representation in visual working memory.

  4. Working memory and simultaneous interpreting

    OpenAIRE

    Timarova, Sarka

    2009-01-01

    Working memory is a cognitive construct underlying a number of abilities, and it has been hypothesised for many years that it is crucial for interpreting. A number of studies have been conducted with the aim to support this hypothesis, but research has not yielded convincing results. Most researchers focused on studying working memory differences between interpreters and non-interpreters with the rationale that differences in working memory between the two groups would provide evidence of wor...

  5. Genetic predictor of working memory and prefrontal function in women with HIV.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundermann, Erin E; Bishop, Jeffrey R; Rubin, Leah H; Little, Deborah M; Meyer, Vanessa J; Martin, Eileen; Weber, Kathleen; Cohen, Mardge; Maki, Pauline M

    2015-02-01

    The Val158Met (rs4680) single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) influences executive function and prefrontal function through its effect on dopamine (DA) metabolism. Both HIV and the Val allele of the Val158Met SNP are associated with compromised executive function and inefficient prefrontal function. The present study used behavioral and neuroimaging techniques to determine independent and interactive associations between HIV serostatus and COMT genotype on working memory and prefrontal function in women. For the behavioral study, 54 HIV-infected and 33 HIV-uninfected women completed the 0-, 1-, and 2-back conditions of the verbal N-back, a working memory test. For the imaging study, 36 women (23 HIV-infected, 13 HIV-uninfected) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) assessments while completing the N-back task. HIV-infected women demonstrated significantly worse N-back performance compared with HIV-uninfected women (p women performed significantly worse than HIV-uninfected controls across N-back conditions (p working memory deficits and altered prefrontal function in HIV-infected individuals.

  6. The ERP research about the influence of the music of Chopin on working memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, C. A.; Wei, Hong-tao; Yue, Li-juan

    2011-10-01

    This study is to examine the effect of the music of Chopin on working memory and the electrical activity of the brain in different conditions by using event-related potentials (ERPs), adopting n-back experimental paradigm and to study the neuromechanism. Thirty adults performed behavioral experiments with three conditions of music and two levels of n-back task. Fourteen normal adults performed ERP experiments with the same program as the behavioral experiment and the EEG were recorded. Chopin music improved people's working memory and pilot music improved most effectively.P3 peak amplitude decreased as working memory load increased. Especially in high load task, P3 peak amplitude decreased gradually in pilot music, background music and free music condition.

  7. Changing concepts of working memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Wei Ji; Husain, Masud; Bays, Paul M

    2014-01-01

    Working memory is widely considered to be limited in capacity, holding a fixed, small number of items, such as Miller's ‘magical number’ seven or Cowan's four. It has recently been proposed that working memory might better be conceptualized as a limited resource that is distributed flexibly among all items to be maintained in memory. According to this view, the quality rather than the quantity of working memory representations determines performance. Here we consider behavioral and emerging neural evidence for this proposal. PMID:24569831

  8. Individual differences in media multitasking and performance on the n-back.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ralph, Brandon C W; Smilek, Daniel

    2017-02-01

    A number of studies have recently examined the link between individual differences in media multitasking (using the MMI) and performance on working memory paradigms. However, these studies have yielded mixed results. Here we examine the relation between media multitasking and one particular working memory paradigm-the n-back (2- and 3-back)-improving upon previous research by (a) treating media multitasking as a continuous variable and adopting a correlational approach as well as (b) using a large sample of participants. First, we found that higher scores on the MMI were associated with a greater proportion of omitted trials on both the 2-back and 3-back, indicating that heavier media multitaskers were more disengaged during the n-back. In line with such a claim, heavier media multitaskers were also more likely to confess to responding randomly during various portions of the experiment, and to report media multitasking during the experiment itself. Importantly, when controlling for the relation between MMI scores and omissions, higher scores on the MMI were associated with an increase in false alarms, but not with a change in hits. These findings refine the extant literature on media multitasking and working memory performance (specifically, performance on the n-back), and suggest that media multitasking may be related to the propensity to disengage from ongoing tasks.

  9. Working memory training shows immediate and long-term effects on cognitive performance in children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pugin, Fiona; Metz, Andreas J.; Stauffer, Madlaina; Wolf, Martin; Jenni, Oskar G.; Huber, Reto

    2014-01-01

    Working memory is important for mental reasoning and learning processes. Several studies in adults and school-age children have shown performance improvement in cognitive tests after working memory training. Our aim was to examine not only immediate but also long-term effects of intensive working memory training on cognitive performance tests in children. Fourteen healthy male subjects between 10 and 16 years trained a visuospatial n-back task over 3 weeks (30 min daily), while 15 individuals of the same age range served as a passive control group. Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls). The improvement was more pronounced in subjects who improved their performance during the training. Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group. We conclude that visuospatial working memory training in children boosts performance in similar memory tasks such as the auditory n-back task. The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training. PMID:25671082

  10. Working memory and inattentional blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bredemeier, Keith; Simons, Daniel J

    2012-04-01

    Individual differences in working memory predict many aspects of cognitive performance, especially for tasks that demand focused attention. One negative consequence of focused attention is inattentional blindness, the failure to notice unexpected objects when attention is engaged elsewhere. Yet, the relationship between individual differences in working memory and inattentional blindness is unclear; some studies have found that higher working memory capacity is associated with greater noticing, but others have found no direct association. Given the theoretical and practical significance of such individual differences, more definitive tests are needed. In two studies with large samples, we tested the relationship between multiple working memory measures and inattentional blindness. Individual differences in working memory predicted the ability to perform an attention-demanding tracking task, but did not predict the likelihood of noticing an unexpected object present during the task. We discuss the reasons why we might not expect such individual differences in noticing and why other studies may have found them.

  11. A potential spatial working memory training task to improve both episodic memory and fluid intelligence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah R Rudebeck

    Full Text Available One current challenge in cognitive training is to create a training regime that benefits multiple cognitive domains, including episodic memory, without relying on a large battery of tasks, which can be time-consuming and difficult to learn. By giving careful consideration to the neural correlates underlying episodic and working memory, we devised a computerized working memory training task in which neurologically healthy participants were required to monitor and detect repetitions in two streams of spatial information (spatial location and scene identity presented simultaneously (i.e. a dual n-back paradigm. Participants' episodic memory abilities were assessed before and after training using two object and scene recognition memory tasks incorporating memory confidence judgments. Furthermore, to determine the generalizability of the effects of training, we also assessed fluid intelligence using a matrix reasoning task. By examining the difference between pre- and post-training performance (i.e. gain scores, we found that the trainers, compared to non-trainers, exhibited a significant improvement in fluid intelligence after 20 days. Interestingly, pre-training fluid intelligence performance, but not training task improvement, was a significant predictor of post-training fluid intelligence improvement, with lower pre-training fluid intelligence associated with greater post-training gain. Crucially, trainers who improved the most on the training task also showed an improvement in recognition memory as captured by d-prime scores and estimates of recollection and familiarity memory. Training task improvement was a significant predictor of gains in recognition and familiarity memory performance, with greater training improvement leading to more marked gains. In contrast, lower pre-training recollection memory scores, and not training task improvement, led to greater recollection memory performance after training. Our findings demonstrate that practice

  12. Working Memory: A Selective Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Phillip L

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to provide a selective overview of the evolution of the concept and assessment of working memory, and how its assessment has been confused with the assessment of some components of attention. A literature search using PsychNet Gold was conducted using the terms working memory. In addition, the writer reviewed recommendations from a sampling of recent neuropsychology texts in regard to the assessment of attention and working memory, as well as the two most recent editions of the Wechsler Memory Scale. It is argued that many clinicians have an incomplete understanding of the relationship between attention and working memory, and often conflate the two in assessment and treatment. Suggestions were made for assessing these abilities.

  13. Cortical oscillations and entrainment in speech processing during working memory load

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjortkjær, Jens; Märcher-Rørsted, Jonatan; Fuglsang, Søren A

    2018-01-01

    Neuronal oscillations are thought to play an important role in working memory (WM) and speech processing. Listening to speech in real-life situations is often cognitively demanding but it is unknown whether WM load influences how auditory cortical activity synchronizes to speech features. Here, we...... developed an auditory n-back paradigm to investigate cortical entrainment to speech envelope fluctuations under different degrees of WM load. We measured the electroencephalogram, pupil dilations and behavioural performance from 22 subjects listening to continuous speech with an embedded n-back task....... The speech stimuli consisted of long spoken number sequences created to match natural speech in terms of sentence intonation, syllabic rate and phonetic content. To burden different WM functions during speech processing, listeners performed an n-back task on the speech sequences in different levels...

  14. Structural correlates of impaired working memory in hippocampal sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winston, Gavin P; Stretton, Jason; Sidhu, Meneka K; Symms, Mark R; Thompson, Pamela J; Duncan, John S

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) has been considered to impair long-term memory, whilst not affecting working memory, but recent evidence suggests that working memory is compromised. Functional MRI (fMRI) studies demonstrate that working memory involves a bilateral frontoparietal network the activation of which is disrupted in hippocampal sclerosis (HS). A specific role of the hippocampus to deactivate during working memory has been proposed with this mechanism faulty in patients with HS. Structural correlates of disrupted working memory in HS have not been explored. Methods: We studied 54 individuals with medically refractory TLE and unilateral HS (29 left) and 28 healthy controls. Subjects underwent 3T structural MRI, a visuospatial n-back fMRI paradigm and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). Working memory capacity assessed by three span tasks (digit span backwards, gesture span, motor sequences) was combined with performance in the visuospatial paradigm to give a global working memory measure. Gray and white matter changes were investigated using voxel-based morphometry and voxel-based analysis of DTI, respectively. Key Findings: Individuals with left or right HS performed less well than healthy controls on all measures of working memory. fMRI demonstrated a bilateral frontoparietal network during the working memory task with reduced activation of the right parietal lobe in both patient groups. In left HS, gray matter loss was seen in the ipsilateral hippocampus and parietal lobe, with maintenance of the gray matter volume of the contralateral parietal lobe associated with better performance. White matter integrity within the frontoparietal network, in particular the superior longitudinal fasciculus and cingulum, and the contralateral temporal lobe, was associated with working memory performance. In right HS, gray matter loss was also seen in the ipsilateral hippocampus and parietal lobe. Working memory performance correlated with the gray matter volume of

  15. Information Updating in Working Memory: Its Effect on Teacher Efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Tao

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Teacher efficacy has a great impact on effective teaching and has been studied in various perspectives. The updating information ability in working memory is always related with many capabilities of cognition. An experiment of N-back task and a questionnaire of teacher efficacy were conducted in this study to test the effect of the ability of information updating in working memory on the teacher efficacy. A significant difference was found in the reaction time between high teacher efficacy group and low teacher efficacy group. The results showed that teachers who scored higher in the teacher efficacy scale tended to react faster than those who scored lower based on the same accuracy. And the updating information ability could serve as a predictor of teacher efficacy.

  16. Failure of Working Memory Training to Enhance Cognition or Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Todd W.; Waskom, Michael L.; Garel, Keri-Lee A.; Cardenas-Iniguez, Carlos; Reynolds, Gretchen O.; Winter, Rebecca; Chang, Patricia; Pollard, Kiersten; Lala, Nupur; Alvarez, George A.; Gabrieli, John D. E.

    2013-01-01

    Fluid intelligence is important for successful functioning in the modern world, but much evidence suggests that fluid intelligence is largely immutable after childhood. Recently, however, researchers have reported gains in fluid intelligence after multiple sessions of adaptive working memory training in adults. The current study attempted to replicate and expand those results by administering a broad assessment of cognitive abilities and personality traits to young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive dual n-back working memory training program and comparing their post-training performance on those tests to a matched set of young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive attentional tracking program. Pre- and post-training measurements of fluid intelligence, standardized intelligence tests, speed of processing, reading skills, and other tests of working memory were assessed. Both training groups exhibited substantial and specific improvements on the trained tasks that persisted for at least 6 months post-training, but no transfer of improvement was observed to any of the non-trained measurements when compared to a third untrained group serving as a passive control. These findings fail to support the idea that adaptive working memory training in healthy young adults enhances working memory capacity in non-trained tasks, fluid intelligence, or other measures of cognitive abilities. PMID:23717453

  17. Failure of working memory training to enhance cognition or intelligence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd W Thompson

    Full Text Available Fluid intelligence is important for successful functioning in the modern world, but much evidence suggests that fluid intelligence is largely immutable after childhood. Recently, however, researchers have reported gains in fluid intelligence after multiple sessions of adaptive working memory training in adults. The current study attempted to replicate and expand those results by administering a broad assessment of cognitive abilities and personality traits to young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive dual n-back working memory training program and comparing their post-training performance on those tests to a matched set of young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive attentional tracking program. Pre- and post-training measurements of fluid intelligence, standardized intelligence tests, speed of processing, reading skills, and other tests of working memory were assessed. Both training groups exhibited substantial and specific improvements on the trained tasks that persisted for at least 6 months post-training, but no transfer of improvement was observed to any of the non-trained measurements when compared to a third untrained group serving as a passive control. These findings fail to support the idea that adaptive working memory training in healthy young adults enhances working memory capacity in non-trained tasks, fluid intelligence, or other measures of cognitive abilities.

  18. Visual working memory contaminates perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Min-Suk; Hong, Sang Wook; Blake, Randolph; Woodman, Geoffrey F

    2011-10-01

    Indirect evidence suggests that the contents of visual working memory may be maintained within sensory areas early in the visual hierarchy. We tested this possibility using a well-studied motion repulsion phenomenon in which perception of one direction of motion is distorted when another direction of motion is viewed simultaneously. We found that observers misperceived the actual direction of motion of a single motion stimulus if, while viewing that stimulus, they were holding a different motion direction in visual working memory. Control experiments showed that none of a variety of alternative explanations could account for this repulsion effect induced by working memory. Our findings provide compelling evidence that visual working memory representations directly interact with the same neural mechanisms as those involved in processing basic sensory events.

  19. The contributions of handedness and working memory to episodic memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahu, Aparna; Christman, Stephen D; Propper, Ruth E

    2016-11-01

    Past studies have independently shown associations of working memory and degree of handedness with episodic memory retrieval. The current study takes a step ahead by examining whether handedness and working memory independently predict episodic memory. In agreement with past studies, there was an inconsistent-handed advantage for episodic memory; however, this advantage was absent for working memory tasks. Furthermore, regression analyses showed handedness, and complex working memory predicted episodic memory performance at different times. Results are discussed in light of theories of episodic memory and hemispheric interaction.

  20. Working memory and Down syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, A; Jarrold, C

    2007-12-01

    A brief account is given of the evolution of the concept of working memory from a unitary store into a multicomponent system. Four components are distinguished, the phonological loop which is responsible for maintaining speech-based information, the visuospatial sketchpad performing a similar function for visual information, the central executive which acts as an attentional control system, and finally a new component, the episodic buffer. The buffer comprises a temporary multidimensional store which is assumed to form an interface between the various subsystems of working memory, long-term memory, and perception. The operation of the model is then illustrated through an account of a research programme concerned with the analysis of working memory in Down syndrome.

  1. Caffeine, extraversion and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Andrew P

    2013-01-01

    Research has shown that extraverts performing a working memory task benefit more from caffeine than do introverts. The present study aimed to replicate this and extend our knowledge by using a lower dose of caffeine (65 mg) and a range of tasks related to different components of working memory. In addition, tasks assessing psychomotor speed and the encoding of new information were included to determine whether caffeine-extraversion interactions were restricted to working memory tasks. A double-blind design was used, with 128 participants being randomly assigned to caffeinated or de-caffeinated coffee conditions. The results showed that caffeine interacted with extraversion in the predicted direction for serial recall and running memory tasks. Caffeine improved simple reaction time and the speed of encoding of new information, effects which were not modified by extraversion. These results suggest possible biological mechanisms underlying effects of caffeine on cognitive performance.

  2. Brain Activation and Deactivation during Location and Color Working Memory Tasks in 11-13-Year-Old Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuontela, Virve; Steenari, Maija-Riikka; Aronen, Eeva T.; Korvenoja, Antti; Aronen, Hannu J.; Carlson, Synnove

    2009-01-01

    Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and n-back tasks we investigated whether, in 11-13-year-old children, spatial (location) and nonspatial (color) information is differentially processed during visual attention (0-back) and working memory (WM) (2-back) tasks and whether such cognitive task performance, compared to a resting state,…

  3. Exploring Possible Neural Mechanisms of Intelligence Differences Using Processing Speed and Working Memory Tasks: An fMRI Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waiter, Gordon D.; Deary, Ian J.; Staff, Roger T.; Murray, Alison D.; Fox, Helen C.; Starr, John M.; Whalley, Lawrence J.

    2009-01-01

    To explore the possible neural foundations of individual differences in intelligence test scores, we examined the associations between Raven's Matrices scores and two tasks that were administered in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) setting. The two tasks were an n-back working memory (N = 37) task and inspection time (N = 47). The…

  4. Dissociation of working memory impairments and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in the brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattfeld, Aaron T.; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Biederman, Joseph; Spencer, Thomas; Brown, Ariel; Fried, Ronna; Gabrieli, John D.E.

    2015-01-01

    Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity. PMID:26900567

  5. Dissociation of working memory impairments and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in the brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron T. Mattfeld

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity.

  6. Dissociation of working memory impairments and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattfeld, Aaron T; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Biederman, Joseph; Spencer, Thomas; Brown, Ariel; Fried, Ronna; Gabrieli, John D E

    2016-01-01

    Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity.

  7. Association Between Sluggish Cognitive Tempo Symptoms and Attentional Network and Working Memory in Primary Schoolchildren.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camprodon-Rosanas, E; Ribas-Fitó, N; Batlle, S; Persavento, C; Alvarez-Pedrerol, M; Sunyer, J; Forns, J

    2017-04-01

    Few consistent data are available in relation to the cognitive and neuropsychological processes involved in sluggish cognitive tempo (SCT) symptoms. The objective of this study was to determine the association of working memory and attentional networks with SCT symptoms in primary schoolchildren. The participants were schoolchildren aged 7 to 10 years ( n = 183) from primary schools in Catalonia (Spain). All the participants completed a working memory task (n-back) and an attentional network task (ANT). Their parents completed an SCT-Child Behavior Checklist self-report and a questionnaire concerning sociodemographic variables. Teachers of the participants provided information on ADHD symptoms and learning determinants. SCT symptoms were correlated with lower scores in both the n-back and ANT. In multivariate regression analysis, SCT symptoms were associated with slower hit reaction times from the ANT. Our results suggest that SCT symptoms are associated with a neuropsychological profile that is different from the classical ADHD profile and characterized by slower reaction times.

  8. Involvement of the cerebellar cortex and nuclei in verbal and visuospatial working memory: a 7 T fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thürling, M; Hautzel, H; Küper, M; Stefanescu, M R; Maderwald, S; Ladd, M E; Timmann, D

    2012-09-01

    The first aim of the present study was to extend previous findings of similar cerebellar cortical areas being involved in verbal and spatial n-back working memory to the level of the cerebellar nuclei. The second aim was to investigate whether different areas of the cerebellar cortex and nuclei contribute to different working memory tasks (n-back vs. Sternberg tasks). Young and healthy subjects participated in two functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies using a 7 T MR scanner with its increased signal-to-noise ratio. One group of subjects (n=21) performed an abstract and a verbal version of an n-back task contrasting a 2-back and 0-back condition. Another group of subjects (n=23) performed an abstract and a verbal version of a Sternberg task contrasting a high load and a low load condition. A block design was used. For image processing of the dentate nuclei, a recently developed region of interest (ROI) driven normalization method of the dentate nuclei was applied (Diedrichsen et al., 2011). Whereas activated areas of the cerebellar cortex and dentate nuclei were not significantly different comparing the abstract and verbal versions of the n-back task, activation in the abstract and verbal Sternberg tasks was significantly different. In both n-back tasks activation was most prominent at the border of lobules VI and Crus I, within lobule VII, and within the more caudal parts of the dentate nucleus bilaterally. In Sternberg tasks the most prominent activations were found in lobule VI extending into Crus I on the right. In the verbal Sternberg task activation was significantly larger within right lobule VI compared to the abstract Sternberg task and compared to the verbal n-back task. Activations of rostral parts of the dentate were most prominent in the verbal Sternberg task, whereas activation of caudal parts predominated in the abstract Sternberg task. On the one hand, the lack of difference between abstract and verbal n-back tasks and the lack of

  9. Associative working memory and subsequent episodic memory in Alzheimer's disease.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geldorp, B. van; Konings, E.P.; Tilborg, I.A. Van; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies indicate deficits in associative working memory in patients with medial-temporal lobe amnesia. However, it is unclear whether these deficits reflect working memory processing or are due to hippocampally mediated long-term memory impairment. We investigated associative working memory

  10. Associative working memory and subsequent episodic memory in Alzheimer's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geldorp, B. van; Konings, E.P.C.; Tilborg, I.A.D.A. van; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies indicate deficits in associative working memory in patients with medial-temporal lobe amnesia. However, it is unclear whether these deficits reflect working memory processing or are due to hippocampally mediated long-term memory impairment. We investigated associative working memory

  11. Memory systems interaction in the pigeon: working and reference memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, William A; Strang, Caroline; Macpherson, Krista

    2015-04-01

    Pigeons' performance on a working memory task, symbolic delayed matching-to-sample, was used to examine the interaction between working memory and reference memory. Reference memory was established by training pigeons to discriminate between the comparison cues used in delayed matching as S+ and S- stimuli. Delayed matching retention tests then measured accuracy when working and reference memory were congruent and incongruent. In 4 experiments, it was shown that the interaction between working and reference memory is reciprocal: Strengthening either type of memory leads to a decrease in the influence of the other type of memory. A process dissociation procedure analysis of the data from Experiment 4 showed independence of working and reference memory, and a model of working memory and reference memory interaction was shown to predict the findings reported in the 4 experiments. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  12. Dynamics of auditory working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jochen eKaiser

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Working memory denotes the ability to retain stimuli in mind that are no longer physically present and to perform mental operations on them. Electro- and magnetoencephalography allow investigating the short-term maintenance of acoustic stimuli at a high temporal resolution. Studies investigating working memory for non-spatial and spatial auditory information have suggested differential roles of regions along the putative auditory ventral and dorsal streams, respectively, in the processing of the different sound properties. Analyses of event-related potentials have shown sustained, memory load-dependent deflections over the retention periods. The topography of these waves suggested an involvement of modality-specific sensory storage regions. Spectral analysis has yielded information about the temporal dynamics of auditory working memory processing of individual stimuli, showing activation peaks during the delay phase whose timing was related to task performance. Coherence at different frequencies was enhanced between frontal and sensory cortex. In summary, auditory working memory seems to rely on the dynamic interplay between frontal executive systems and sensory representation regions.

  13. Working memory and the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan; Jarrold, Christopher; Vargha-Khadem, Faraneh

    2011-12-01

    A number of studies suggest an important role for the hippocampus in tasks involving visuospatial or relational working memory. We test the generality of this proposal across tasks using a battery designed to investigate the various components of working memory, studying the working memory performance of Jon, who shows a bilateral reduction in hippocampal volume of approximately 50%, comparing him to a group of 48 college students. We measure performance on four complex working memory span measures based on combining visuospatial and verbal storage with visuospatial or verbal concurrent processing as well as measuring Jon's ability to carry out the component storage and processing aspects of these tasks. Jon performed at a consistently high level across our range of tasks. Possible reasons for the apparent disparity between our own findings and earlier studies showing a hippocampal deficit are discussed in terms of both the potential differences in the demands placed on relational memory and of the proposed distinction between egocentric and allocentric visuospatial processing.

  14. Changes in brain network efficiency and working memory performance in aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, Matthew L; Simpson, Sean L; Dagenbach, Dale; Lyday, Robert G; Burdette, Jonathan H; Laurienti, Paul J

    2015-01-01

    Working memory is a complex psychological construct referring to the temporary storage and active processing of information. We used functional connectivity brain network metrics quantifying local and global efficiency of information transfer for predicting individual variability in working memory performance on an n-back task in both young (n = 14) and older (n = 15) adults. Individual differences in both local and global efficiency during the working memory task were significant predictors of working memory performance in addition to age (and an interaction between age and global efficiency). Decreases in local efficiency during the working memory task were associated with better working memory performance in both age cohorts. In contrast, increases in global efficiency were associated with much better working performance for young participants; however, increases in global efficiency were associated with a slight decrease in working memory performance for older participants. Individual differences in local and global efficiency during resting-state sessions were not significant predictors of working memory performance. Significant group whole-brain functional network decreases in local efficiency also were observed during the working memory task compared to rest, whereas no significant differences were observed in network global efficiency. These results are discussed in relation to recently developed models of age-related differences in working memory.

  15. Can Interactive Working Memory Training Improve Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alloway, Tracy

    2012-01-01

    Background: Working memory is linked to learning outcomes and there is emerging evidence that training working memory can yield gains in working memory and fluid intelligence. Aims: The aim of the present study was to investigate whether interactive working memory training would transfer to acquired cognitive skills, such as vocabulary and…

  16. Can verbal working memory training improve reading?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banales, Erin; Kohnen, Saskia; McArthur, Genevieve

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the current study was to determine whether poor verbal working memory is associated with poor word reading accuracy because the former causes the latter, or the latter causes the former. To this end, we tested whether (a) verbal working memory training improves poor verbal working memory or poor word reading accuracy, and whether (b) reading training improves poor reading accuracy or verbal working memory in a case series of four children with poor word reading accuracy and verbal working memory. Each child completed 8 weeks of verbal working memory training and 8 weeks of reading training. Verbal working memory training improved verbal working memory in two of the four children, but did not improve their reading accuracy. Similarly, reading training improved word reading accuracy in all children, but did not improve their verbal working memory. These results suggest that the causal links between verbal working memory and reading accuracy may not be as direct as has been assumed.

  17. Cortical oscillations and entrainment in speech processing during working memory load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hjortkjaer, Jens; Märcher-Rørsted, Jonatan; Fuglsang, Søren A; Dau, Torsten

    2018-02-02

    Neuronal oscillations are thought to play an important role in working memory (WM) and speech processing. Listening to speech in real-life situations is often cognitively demanding but it is unknown whether WM load influences how auditory cortical activity synchronizes to speech features. Here, we developed an auditory n-back paradigm to investigate cortical entrainment to speech envelope fluctuations under different degrees of WM load. We measured the electroencephalogram, pupil dilations and behavioural performance from 22 subjects listening to continuous speech with an embedded n-back task. The speech stimuli consisted of long spoken number sequences created to match natural speech in terms of sentence intonation, syllabic rate and phonetic content. To burden different WM functions during speech processing, listeners performed an n-back task on the speech sequences in different levels of background noise. Increasing WM load at higher n-back levels was associated with a decrease in posterior alpha power as well as increased pupil dilations. Frontal theta power increased at the start of the trial and increased additionally with higher n-back level. The observed alpha-theta power changes are consistent with visual n-back paradigms suggesting general oscillatory correlates of WM processing load. Speech entrainment was measured as a linear mapping between the envelope of the speech signal and low-frequency cortical activity (level) decreased cortical speech envelope entrainment. Although entrainment persisted under high load, our results suggest a top-down influence of WM processing on cortical speech entrainment. © 2018 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience published by Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Working Memory Systems in the Rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bratch, Alexander; Kann, Spencer; Cain, Joshua A; Wu, Jie-En; Rivera-Reyes, Nilda; Dalecki, Stefan; Arman, Diana; Dunn, Austin; Cooper, Shiloh; Corbin, Hannah E; Doyle, Amanda R; Pizzo, Matthew J; Smith, Alexandra E; Crystal, Jonathon D

    2016-02-08

    A fundamental feature of memory in humans is the ability to simultaneously work with multiple types of information using independent memory systems. Working memory is conceptualized as two independent memory systems under executive control [1, 2]. Although there is a long history of using the term "working memory" to describe short-term memory in animals, it is not known whether multiple, independent memory systems exist in nonhumans. Here, we used two established short-term memory approaches to test the hypothesis that spatial and olfactory memory operate as independent working memory resources in the rat. In the olfactory memory task, rats chose a novel odor from a gradually incrementing set of old odors [3]. In the spatial memory task, rats searched for a depleting food source at multiple locations [4]. We presented rats with information to hold in memory in one domain (e.g., olfactory) while adding a memory load in the other domain (e.g., spatial). Control conditions equated the retention interval delay without adding a second memory load. In a further experiment, we used proactive interference [5-7] in the spatial domain to compromise spatial memory and evaluated the impact of adding an olfactory memory load. Olfactory and spatial memory are resistant to interference from the addition of a memory load in the other domain. Our data suggest that olfactory and spatial memory draw on independent working memory systems in the rat. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Visual Working Memory Capacity and Proactive Interference

    OpenAIRE

    Hartshorne, Joshua

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. METHODOLOGY/P...

  20. Enhanced dimension-specific visual working memory in grapheme-color synesthesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terhune, Devin Blair; Wudarczyk, Olga Anna; Kochuparampil, Priya; Cohen Kadosh, Roi

    2013-10-01

    There is emerging evidence that the encoding of visual information and the maintenance of this information in a temporarily accessible state in working memory rely on the same neural mechanisms. A consequence of this overlap is that atypical forms of perception should influence working memory. We examined this by investigating whether having grapheme-color synesthesia, a condition characterized by the involuntary experience of color photisms when reading or representing graphemes, would confer benefits on working memory. Two competing hypotheses propose that superior memory in synesthesia results from information being coded in two information channels (dual-coding) or from superior dimension-specific visual processing (enhanced processing). We discriminated between these hypotheses in three n-back experiments in which controls and synesthetes viewed inducer and non-inducer graphemes and maintained color or grapheme information in working memory. Synesthetes displayed superior color working memory than controls for both grapheme types, whereas the two groups did not differ in grapheme working memory. Further analyses excluded the possibilities of enhanced working memory among synesthetes being due to greater color discrimination, stimulus color familiarity, or bidirectionality. These results reveal enhanced dimension-specific visual working memory in this population and supply further evidence for a close relationship between sensory processing and the maintenance of sensory information in working memory. Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Enhanced dimension-specific visual working memory in grapheme–color synesthesia☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terhune, Devin Blair; Wudarczyk, Olga Anna; Kochuparampil, Priya; Cohen Kadosh, Roi

    2013-01-01

    There is emerging evidence that the encoding of visual information and the maintenance of this information in a temporarily accessible state in working memory rely on the same neural mechanisms. A consequence of this overlap is that atypical forms of perception should influence working memory. We examined this by investigating whether having grapheme–color synesthesia, a condition characterized by the involuntary experience of color photisms when reading or representing graphemes, would confer benefits on working memory. Two competing hypotheses propose that superior memory in synesthesia results from information being coded in two information channels (dual-coding) or from superior dimension-specific visual processing (enhanced processing). We discriminated between these hypotheses in three n-back experiments in which controls and synesthetes viewed inducer and non-inducer graphemes and maintained color or grapheme information in working memory. Synesthetes displayed superior color working memory than controls for both grapheme types, whereas the two groups did not differ in grapheme working memory. Further analyses excluded the possibilities of enhanced working memory among synesthetes being due to greater color discrimination, stimulus color familiarity, or bidirectionality. These results reveal enhanced dimension-specific visual working memory in this population and supply further evidence for a close relationship between sensory processing and the maintenance of sensory information in working memory. PMID:23892185

  2. Working memory in cigarette smokers: Comparison to non-smokers and effects of abstinence☆

    OpenAIRE

    Mendrek, Adrianna; Monterosso, John; Simon, Sara L.; Jarvik, Murray; Brody, Arthur; Olmstead, Richard; Domier, Catherine P.; Cohen, Mark S.; Ernst, Monique; London, Edythe D.

    2005-01-01

    The present study was designed to examine the effect of cigarette smoking and withdrawal on working memory. Participants included 15 smokers and 22 matched non-smokers. For both groups the N-Back Task (of working memory) was administered in two test blocks on each of two days. On one day, smokers were tested after ≥13 h abstinence; on the other day, testing began ≤1 h after smoking. Smokers inhaled one cigarette between the blocks on each test day. Results indicated that performance of smoker...

  3. The Auditory-Visual Speech Benefit on Working Memory in Older Adults with Hearing Impairment

    OpenAIRE

    Frtusova, Jana B.; Phillips, Natalie A.

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the effect of auditory-visual (AV) speech stimuli on working memory in older adults with poorer-hearing (PH) in comparison to age- and education-matched older adults with better hearing (BH). Participants completed a working memory n-back task (0- to 2-back) in which sequences of digits were presented in visual-only (i.e., speech-reading), auditory-only (A-only), and AV conditions. Auditory event-related potentials (ERP) were collected to assess the relationship between pe...

  4. Working Memory and Down Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, A.; Jarrold, C.

    2007-01-01

    A brief account is given of the evolution of the concept of working memory from a unitary store into a multicomponent system. Four components are distinguished, the phonological loop which is responsible for maintaining speech-based information, the visuospatial sketchpad performing a similar function for visual information, the central executive…

  5. Is Working Memory Training Effective?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shipstead, Zach; Redick, Thomas S.; Engle, Randall W.

    2012-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is a cognitive system that strongly relates to a person's ability to reason with novel information and direct attention to goal-relevant information. Due to the central role that WM plays in general cognition, it has become the focus of a rapidly growing training literature that seeks to affect broad cognitive change through…

  6. Impaired Working Memory Updating for Emotional Stimuli in Depressed Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dandan; Xie, Hui; He, Zhenhong; Wei, Zhaoguo; Gu, Ruolei

    2018-01-01

    Although two previous studies have demonstrated that depressed individuals showed deficits in working memory (WM) updating of both negative and positive contents, the effects were confounded by shifting dysfunctions and the detailed neural mechanism associated with the failure in N-back task is not clear. Using a 2-back task, the current study examined the WM updating of positive, negative and neutral contents in depressed patients. It is found that depressed patients performed poorer than healthy controls only when updating positive material. Using event-related potential (ERP) technique, the current study also investigated the neural correlates of updating deficits in depression. According to previous studies, the n-back task was divided into three sub-processes, i.e., encoding, matching and maintaining. Our ERP results showed that depressed patients had smaller occipital P1 for positive material compared to healthy controls, indicating their insensitivity to positive items on early encoding stage. Besides, depressed patients had larger frontal P2 and parietal late positive potential (LPP) than healthy controls irrespective of the valence of the words, reflecting that patients are inefficient during matching (P2) and maintaining (LPP) processes. These two mechanisms (insufficient attention to positive stimuli and low efficiency in matching and maintaining) together lead to the deficits of WM updating in depression.

  7. Effect of a single dose of dextromethorphan on psychomotor performance and working memory capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Kuraishy, Hayder M; Al-Gareeb, Ali I; Ashor, Ammar Waham

    2012-04-01

    Previous studies show that the prolonged use of dextromethorphan produces cognitive deterioration in humans. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of a single dose of dextroemthrophan on psychomotor performance and working memory capacity. This is a randomized, double-blind, controlled, and prospective study. Thirty-six (17 women, 19 men) medical students enrolled in the study; half of them (7 women, 11 men) were given placebo, while the other half (10 women, 8 men) received dextromethorphan. The choice reaction time, critical flicker fusion threshold, and N-back working memory task were measured before and after 2 h of taking the drugs. Dextromethorphan showed a significant deterioration in the 3-back working memory task (P0.05). On the other hand, placebo showed no significant changes as regards the choice reaction time, critical flicker fusion threshold, and N-back working memory task (P>0.05). A single dose of dextromethorphan has no effect on attention and arousal but may significantly impair the working memory capacity.

  8. Interaction of threat and verbal working memory in adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Nilam; Vytal, Katherine; Pavletic, Nevia; Stoodley, Catherine; Pine, Daniel S; Grillon, Christian; Ernst, Monique

    2016-04-01

    Threat induces a state of sustained anxiety that can disrupt cognitive processing, and, reciprocally, cognitive processing can modulate an anxiety response to threat. These effects depend on the level of cognitive engagement, which itself varies as a function of task difficulty. In adults, we recently showed that induced anxiety impaired working memory accuracy at low and medium but not high load. Conversely, increasing the task load reduced the physiological correlates of anxiety (anxiety-potentiated startle). The present work examines such threat-cognition interactions as a function of age. We expected threat to more strongly impact working memory in younger individuals by virtue of putatively restricted cognitive resources and weaker emotion regulation. This was tested by examining the influence of age on the interaction of anxiety and working memory in 25 adolescents (10 to 17 years) and 25 adults (22 to 46 years). Working memory load was manipulated using a verbal n-back task. Anxiety was induced using the threat of an aversive loud scream and measured via eyeblink startle. Findings revealed that, in both age groups, accuracy was lower during threat than safe conditions at low and medium but not high load, and reaction times were faster during threat than safe conditions at high load but did not differ at other loads. Additionally, anxiety-potentiated startle was greater during low and medium than high load. Thus, the interactions of anxiety with working memory appear similar in adolescents and adults. Whether these similarities reflect common neural mechanisms would need to be assessed using functional neuroimaging. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  9. Spatial and verbal working memory: A functional magnetic resonance imaging study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blaž Koritnik

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available According to numerous studies, working memory is not a unitary system. Baddeley's model of working memory includes besides central executive also two separate systems for verbal and visuo-spatial information processing. A modality- and process-specific specialization presumably exists in working memory system of the frontal lobes. In our preliminary study, we have used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the pattern of cortical activation during spatial and verbal n-back task in six healthy subjects. A bilateral fronto-parietal cortical network was activated in both tasks. There was larger activation of right parietal and bilateral occipital areas in spatial than in vebal task. Activation of left sensorimotor area was larger in verbal compared to spatial task. No task-specific differences were found in the prefrontal cortex. Our results support the assumption that modality-specific processes exist within the working-memory system.

  10. Visuospatial working memory training facilitates visually-aided explicit sequence learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, John S Y; Wu, Qiaofeng; Liang, Danxia; Yan, Jin H

    2015-10-01

    Finger sequence learning requires visuospatial working memory (WM). However, the dynamics between age, WM training, and motor skill acquisition are unclear. Therefore, we examined how visuospatial WM training improves finger movement sequential accuracy in younger (n=26, 21.1±1.37years) and older adults (n=22, 70.6±4.01years). After performing a finger sequence learning exercise and numerical and spatial WM tasks, participants in each age group were randomly assigned to either the experimental (EX) or control (CO) groups. For one hour daily over a 10-day period, the EX group practiced an adaptive n-back spatial task while those in the CO group practiced a non-adaptive version. As a result of WM practice, the EX participants increased their accuracy in the spatial n-back tasks, while accuracy remained unimproved in the numerical n-back tasks. In all groups, reaction times (RT) became shorter in most numerical and spatial n-back tasks. The learners in the EX group - but not in the CO group - showed improvements in their retention of finger sequences. The findings support our hypothesis that computerized visuospatial WM training improves finger sequence learning both in younger and in older adults. We discuss the theoretical implications and clinical relevance of this research for motor learning and functional rehabilitation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Transfer of training from one working memory task to another: Behavioural and neural evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin L. Beatty

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available N-back working memory (WM tasks necessitate the maintenance and updating of dynamic rehearsal sets during performance. The delayed matching-to-sample (dMTS task is another WM task, which in turn involves the encoding, maintenance, and retrieval of stimulus representations in sequential order. Because both n-back and dMTS engage WM function, we hypothesized that compared to a control task not taxing WM, training on the n-back task would be associated with better performance on dMTS by virtue of training a shared mental capacity. We tested this hypothesis by randomly assigning subjects (N = 43 to train on either the n-back (including 2-back and 3-back levels or an active control task. Following training, dMTS was administered in the fMRI scanner. The n-back group performed marginally better than the active control group on dMTS. In addition, although the n-back group improved more on the less difficult 2-back level than the more difficult 3-back level across training sessions, it was improvement on the 3-back level that accounted for 21% of the variance in dMTS performance. For the control group, improvement in training across sessions was unrelated to dMTS performance. At the neural level, greater activation in the left inferior frontal gyrus, right posterior parietal cortex and the cerebellum distinguished the n-back group from the control group in the maintenance phase of dMTS. Degree of improvement on the 3-back level across training sessions was correlated with activation in right lateral prefrontal and motor cortices in the maintenance phase of dMTS. Our results suggest that although n-back training is more likely to improve performance in easier blocks, it is improvement in more difficult blocks that is predictive of performance on a target task drawing on WM. In addition, the extent to which training on a task can transfer to another task is likely due to the engagement of shared cognitive capacities and underlying neural substrates

  12. The impact of auditory working memory training on the fronto-parietal working memory network

    OpenAIRE

    Schneiders, Julia A.; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel

    2012-01-01

    Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory ...

  13. Working memory is differentially affected by stress in men and women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoofs, Daniela; Pabst, Stephan; Brand, Matthias; Wolf, Oliver T

    2013-03-15

    Stress has been shown to influence working memory. However, sex differences and the potential impact of stimulus emotionality have not received much attention. In a first experiment the effects of stress on a neutral working memory (WM) paradigm were tested in male and female participants (Experiment 1). Experiment 2 employed the same paradigm but used emotional stimuli. For this purpose, healthy participants were exposed either to a stressful (Trierer Social Stress Test (TSST)) or to a non-stressful control condition. Subsequently, WM performance in an n-back task was assessed. In Experiment 1, single digits were used as stimuli, while in Experiment 2 neutral and negative pictures were additionally employed. Salivary cortisol and Alpha-Amylase (sAA) were measured before and three times after the treatment as a marker of hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis- and sympathetic nervous system (SNS) activity. In both experiments, stress caused a substantial cortisol and sAA increase. For WM performance (response time) a stress by sex interaction was apparent. Stress enhanced performance in men, while impairing it in women. In both experiments stress had no effect on response accuracy. No modulating effect of the emotional quality of stimuli on n-back performance was observed (study 2). The results indicate that the effect of acute stress on n-back performance differs between the sexes. In contrast to long-term memory, the influence of stress on WM appears not to be modulated by the emotionality of the employed stimuli if stimuli are potential targets as it is the case in the n-back task. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Visual working memory contaminates perception

    OpenAIRE

    Kang, Min-Suk; Hong, Sang Wook; Blake, Randolph; Woodman, Geoffrey F.

    2011-01-01

    Indirect evidence suggests that the contents of visual working memory may be maintained within sensory areas early in the visual hierarchy. We tested this possibility using a well-studied motion repulsion phenomenon in which perception of one direction of motion is distorted when another direction of motion is viewed simultaneously. We found that observers misperceived the actual direction of motion of a single motion stimulus if, while viewing that stimulus, they were holding a different mot...

  15. The effect of binaural beats on verbal working memory and cortical connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchene, Christine; Abaid, Nicole; Moran, Rosalyn; Diana, Rachel A.; Leonessa, Alexander

    2017-04-01

    Objective. Synchronization in activated regions of cortical networks affect the brain’s frequency response, which has been associated with a wide range of states and abilities, including memory. A non-invasive method for manipulating cortical synchronization is binaural beats. Binaural beats take advantage of the brain’s response to two pure tones, delivered independently to each ear, when those tones have a small frequency mismatch. The mismatch between the tones is interpreted as a beat frequency, which may act to synchronize cortical oscillations. Neural synchrony is particularly important for working memory processes, the system controlling online organization and retention of information for successful goal-directed behavior. Therefore, manipulation of synchrony via binaural beats provides a unique window into working memory and associated connectivity of cortical networks. Approach. In this study, we examined the effects of different acoustic stimulation conditions during an N-back working memory task, and we measured participant response accuracy and cortical network topology via EEG recordings. Six acoustic stimulation conditions were used: None, Pure Tone, Classical Music, 5 Hz binaural beats, 10 Hz binaural beats, and 15 Hz binaural beats. Main results. We determined that listening to 15 Hz binaural beats during an N-Back working memory task increased the individual participant’s accuracy, modulated the cortical frequency response, and changed the cortical network connection strengths during the task. Only the 15 Hz binaural beats produced significant change in relative accuracy compared to the None condition. Significance. Listening to 15 Hz binaural beats during the N-back task activated salient frequency bands and produced networks characterized by higher information transfer as compared to other auditory stimulation conditions.

  16. The effect of binaural beats on verbal working memory and cortical connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchene, Christine; Abaid, Nicole; Moran, Rosalyn; Diana, Rachel A; Leonessa, Alexander

    2017-04-01

    Synchronization in activated regions of cortical networks affect the brain's frequency response, which has been associated with a wide range of states and abilities, including memory. A non-invasive method for manipulating cortical synchronization is binaural beats. Binaural beats take advantage of the brain's response to two pure tones, delivered independently to each ear, when those tones have a small frequency mismatch. The mismatch between the tones is interpreted as a beat frequency, which may act to synchronize cortical oscillations. Neural synchrony is particularly important for working memory processes, the system controlling online organization and retention of information for successful goal-directed behavior. Therefore, manipulation of synchrony via binaural beats provides a unique window into working memory and associated connectivity of cortical networks. In this study, we examined the effects of different acoustic stimulation conditions during an N-back working memory task, and we measured participant response accuracy and cortical network topology via EEG recordings. Six acoustic stimulation conditions were used: None, Pure Tone, Classical Music, 5 Hz binaural beats, 10 Hz binaural beats, and 15 Hz binaural beats. We determined that listening to 15 Hz binaural beats during an N-Back working memory task increased the individual participant's accuracy, modulated the cortical frequency response, and changed the cortical network connection strengths during the task. Only the 15 Hz binaural beats produced significant change in relative accuracy compared to the None condition. Listening to 15 Hz binaural beats during the N-back task activated salient frequency bands and produced networks characterized by higher information transfer as compared to other auditory stimulation conditions.

  17. Dual n-back training increases the capacity of the focus of attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lilienthal, Lindsey; Tamez, Elaine; Shelton, Jill Talley; Myerson, Joel; Hale, Sandra

    2013-02-01

    Working memory (WM) training has been reported to benefit abilities as diverse as fluid intelligence (Jaeggi et al., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105:6829-6833, 2008) and reading comprehension (Chein & Morrison, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17:193-199, 2010), but transfer is not always observed (for reviews, see Morrison & Chein, Psychonomics Bulletin & Review, 18:46-60, 2011; Shipstead et al., Psychological Bulletin, 138:628-654, 2012). In contrast, recent WM training studies have consistently reported improvement on the trained tasks. The basis for these training benefits has received little attention, however, and it is not known which WM components and/or processes are being improved. Therefore, the goal of the present study was to investigate five possible mechanisms underlying the effects of adaptive dual n-back training on working memory (i.e., improvements in executive attention, updating, and focus switching, as well as increases in the capacity of the focus of attention and short-term memory). In addition to a no-contact control group, the present study also included an active control group whose members received nonadaptive training on the same task. All three groups showed significant improvements on the n-back task from pretest to posttest, but adaptive training produced larger improvements than did nonadaptive training, which in turn produced larger improvements than simply retesting. Adaptive, but not nonadaptive, training also resulted in improvements on an untrained running span task that measured the capacity of the focus of attention. No other differential improvements were observed, suggesting that increases in the capacity of the focus of attention underlie the benefits of adaptive dual n-back training.

  18. Neural oscillations in auditory working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Wilsch, A.

    2015-01-01

    The present thesis investigated memory load and memory decay in auditory working memory. Alpha power as a marker for memory load served as the primary indicator for load and decay fluctuations hypothetically reflecting functional inhibition of irrelevant information. Memory load was induced by presenting auditory signals (syllables and pure-tone sequences) in noise because speech-in-noise has been shown before to increase memory load. The aim of the thesis was to assess with magnetoencephalog...

  19. Frontal Structural Neural Correlates of Working Memory Performance in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nissim, Nicole R; O'Shea, Andrew M; Bryant, Vaughn; Porges, Eric C; Cohen, Ronald; Woods, Adam J

    2016-01-01

    Working memory is an executive memory process that allows transitional information to be held and manipulated temporarily in memory stores before being forgotten or encoded into long-term memory. Working memory is necessary for everyday decision-making and problem solving, making it a fundamental process in the daily lives of older adults. Working memory relies heavily on frontal lobe structures and is known to decline with age. The current study aimed to determine the neural correlates of decreased working memory performance in the frontal lobes by comparing cortical thickness and cortical surface area from two demographically matched groups of healthy older adults, free from cognitive impairment, with high versus low N-Back working memory performance ( N = 56; average age = 70.29 ± 10.64). High-resolution structural T1-weighted images (1 mm isotropic voxels) were obtained on a 3T Philips MRI scanner. When compared to high performers, low performers exhibited significantly decreased cortical surface area in three frontal lobe regions lateralized to the right hemisphere: medial orbital frontal gyrus, inferior frontal gyrus, and superior frontal gyrus (FDR p frontal regions may underlie age-related decline of working memory function.

  20. The impact of working memory on interpreting

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    白云安; 张国梅

    2016-01-01

    This paper investigates the roles of working memory in interpreting process. First of all, it gives a brief introduction to interpreting. Secondly, the paper exemplifies the role of working memory in interpreting. The result reveals that the working memory capacity of interpreters is not adsolutely proportional to the quality of interpreting in the real interpreting conditions. The performance of an interpreter with well-equipped working memory capacity will comprehensively influenced by various elements.

  1. Working Memory Influences on Long-Term Memory and Comprehension

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Radvansky, Gabriel

    2004-01-01

    .... This study looked at how comprehension and memory processing at the mental model level is related to traditional measures of working memory capacity, including the word span, reading span, operation...

  2. What is Working Memory Capacity, and how can we Measure It?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliver eWilhelm

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available A latent variable study examined whether different classes of working-memory tasks measure the same general construct of working-memory capacity (WMC. Data from 270 subjects were used to examine the relationship between Binding, Updating, Recall-N-back, and Complex Span tasks, and the relations of WMC with secondary memory measures, indicators of cognitive control from two response-conflict paradigms (Simon task and Eriksen flanker task, and fluid intelligence. Confirmatory factor analyses support the concept of a general WMC factor. Results from structural-equation modeling show negligible relations of WMC with response-conflict resolution, and very strong relations of WMC with secondary memory and fluid intelligence. The findings support the hypothesis that individual differences in WMC reflect the ability to build, maintain and update arbitrary bindings.

  3. A comparative study of the working memory multicomponent model in psychosis and healthy controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Torres, Ana M; Elosúa, M Rosa; Lorente-Omeñaca, Ruth; Moreno-Izco, Lucía; Cuesta, Manuel J

    2015-08-01

    Working memory deficits are considered nuclear deficits in psychotic disorders. However, research has not found a generalized impairment in all of the components of working memory. We aimed to assess the components of the Baddeley and Hitch working memory model: the temporary systems-the phonological loop, the visuospatial sketchpad and the episodic buffer (introduced later by Baddeley)-and the central executive system, which includes four executive functions: divided attention, updating, shifting and inhibition. We assessed working memory performance in a sample of 21 patients with a psychotic disorder and 21 healthy controls. Patients also underwent a clinical assessment. Both univariate and repeated measures ANOVAs were applied to analyze performance in the working memory components between groups. Patients with a psychotic disorder underperformed compared to the controls in all of the working memory tasks, but after controlling for age and premorbid IQ, we only found a difference in performance in the N-Back task. Repeated measures ANCOVAs showed that patients also underperformed compared to the controls in the Digit span test and the TMT task. Not all of the components of working memory were impaired in the patients. Specifically, patients' performance was impaired in the tasks selected to assess the phonological loop and the shifting executive function. Patients' also showed worse performance than controls in the N-Back task, representative of the updating executive function. However, we did not find higher impairment in the patients' performance respect to controls when increasing the loading of the task. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Mental Imagery and Visual Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel

    2011-01-01

    Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory - but not iconic visual memory - can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance ...

  5. Dieting and food cue-related working memory performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Meule

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Executive functioning (e.g., working memory is tightly intertwined with self-regulation. For example, food cue-elicited craving has been found to impair working memory performance. Furthermore, current dieters have been found to show lower working memory performance than non-dieters. Recent research, however, suggests that it is crucial to consider dieting success in addition to current dieting status or restrained eating in order to reveal cognitive mechanisms that are associated with successful eating-related self-regulation. The current study investigated food cue-related working memory performance as a function of dieting status and dieting success in female students. Participants performed an n-back task with pictures of food and neutral objects. Reaction time in response to food pictures was slower than in response to neutral pictures, whereas omission errors did not differ between picture types. Current food craving was increased after performing the food block, but not after the neutral block. There was an indirect effect of current dieting status on higher food craving after the food block, which was mediated by slower reaction time to food vs. neutral pictures. Furthermore, higher dieting success was associated with fewer omission errors in the food vs. neutral block in current dieters. There were no relationships of restrained eating with current food craving and task performance. Results further highlight the need to differentiate between successful and unsuccessful dieting in addition to current dieting status or restrained eating when examining possible mechanisms of overeating or successful restraint. Although palatable food cues induce food craving regardless of dieting success, they may boost executive functioning in successful dieters, which helps them to overcome these temptations.

  6. Dieting and Food Cue-Related Working Memory Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meule, Adrian

    2016-01-01

    Executive functioning (e.g., working memory) is tightly intertwined with self-regulation. For example, food cue-elicited craving has been found to impair working memory performance. Furthermore, current dieters have been found to show lower working memory performance than non-dieters. Recent research, however, suggests that it is crucial to consider dieting success in addition to current dieting status or restrained eating in order to reveal cognitive mechanisms that are associated with successful eating-related self-regulation. The current study investigated food cue-related working memory performance as a function of dieting status and dieting success in female students. Participants performed an n -back task with pictures of food and neutral objects. Reaction time in response to food pictures was slower than in response to neutral pictures, whereas omission errors did not differ between picture types. Current food craving was increased after performing the food block, but not after the neutral block. There was an indirect effect of current dieting status on higher food craving after the food block, which was mediated by slower reaction time to food vs. neutral pictures. Furthermore, higher dieting success was associated with fewer omission errors in the food vs. neutral block in current dieters. There were no relationships of restrained eating with current food craving and task performance. Results further highlight the need to differentiate between successful and unsuccessful dieting in addition to current dieting status or restrained eating when examining possible mechanisms of overeating or successful restraint. Although palatable food cues induce food craving regardless of dieting success, they may boost executive functioning in successful dieters, which helps them to overcome these temptations.

  7. ASSERT: Augmentation Grant on Working Memory Capacity

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Engle, Randall

    2000-01-01

    .... That work has resulted in numerous publications and conference presentations demonstrating that individuals who score in the bottom quartile on measures of working memory capacity show more errors...

  8. Working Memory for Linguistic and Non-linguistic Manual Gestures: Evidence, Theory, and Application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudner, Mary

    2018-01-01

    Linguistic manual gestures are the basis of sign languages used by deaf individuals. Working memory and language processing are intimately connected and thus when language is gesture-based, it is important to understand related working memory mechanisms. This article reviews work on working memory for linguistic and non-linguistic manual gestures and discusses theoretical and applied implications. Empirical evidence shows that there are effects of load and stimulus degradation on working memory for manual gestures. These effects are similar to those found for working memory for speech-based language. Further, there are effects of pre-existing linguistic representation that are partially similar across language modalities. But above all, deaf signers score higher than hearing non-signers on an n-back task with sign-based stimuli, irrespective of their semantic and phonological content, but not with non-linguistic manual actions. This pattern may be partially explained by recent findings relating to cross-modal plasticity in deaf individuals. It suggests that in linguistic gesture-based working memory, semantic aspects may outweigh phonological aspects when processing takes place under challenging conditions. The close association between working memory and language development should be taken into account in understanding and alleviating the challenges faced by deaf children growing up with cochlear implants as well as other clinical populations.

  9. Working Memory for Linguistic and Non-linguistic Manual Gestures: Evidence, Theory, and Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Rudner

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Linguistic manual gestures are the basis of sign languages used by deaf individuals. Working memory and language processing are intimately connected and thus when language is gesture-based, it is important to understand related working memory mechanisms. This article reviews work on working memory for linguistic and non-linguistic manual gestures and discusses theoretical and applied implications. Empirical evidence shows that there are effects of load and stimulus degradation on working memory for manual gestures. These effects are similar to those found for working memory for speech-based language. Further, there are effects of pre-existing linguistic representation that are partially similar across language modalities. But above all, deaf signers score higher than hearing non-signers on an n-back task with sign-based stimuli, irrespective of their semantic and phonological content, but not with non-linguistic manual actions. This pattern may be partially explained by recent findings relating to cross-modal plasticity in deaf individuals. It suggests that in linguistic gesture-based working memory, semantic aspects may outweigh phonological aspects when processing takes place under challenging conditions. The close association between working memory and language development should be taken into account in understanding and alleviating the challenges faced by deaf children growing up with cochlear implants as well as other clinical populations.

  10. Working memory for meaningless manual gestures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudner, Mary

    2015-03-01

    Effects on working memory performance relating to item similarity have been linked to prior categorisation of representations in long-term memory. However, there is evidence from gesture processing that this link may not be obligatory. The present study investigated whether working memory for incidentally generated meaningless manual gestures is influenced by formational similarity and whether this effect is modulated by working-memory load. Results showed that formational similarity did lower performance, demonstrating that similarity effects are not dependent on prior categorisation. However, this effect was only found when working-memory load was low, supporting a flexible resource allocation model according to which it is the quality rather than quantity of working memory representations that determines performance. This interpretation is in line with proposals suggesting language modality specific allocation of resources in working memory. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. What works in auditory working memory? A neural oscillations perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilsch, Anna; Obleser, Jonas

    2016-06-01

    Working memory is a limited resource: brains can only maintain small amounts of sensory input (memory load) over a brief period of time (memory decay). The dynamics of slow neural oscillations as recorded using magneto- and electroencephalography (M/EEG) provide a window into the neural mechanics of these limitations. Especially oscillations in the alpha range (8-13Hz) are a sensitive marker for memory load. Moreover, according to current models, the resultant working memory load is determined by the relative noise in the neural representation of maintained information. The auditory domain allows memory researchers to apply and test the concept of noise quite literally: Employing degraded stimulus acoustics increases memory load and, at the same time, allows assessing the cognitive resources required to process speech in noise in an ecologically valid and clinically relevant way. The present review first summarizes recent findings on neural oscillations, especially alpha power, and how they reflect memory load and memory decay in auditory working memory. The focus is specifically on memory load resulting from acoustic degradation. These findings are then contrasted with contextual factors that benefit neural as well as behavioral markers of memory performance, by reducing representational noise. We end on discussing the functional role of alpha power in auditory working memory and suggest extensions of the current methodological toolkit. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. Histamine H3 receptor density is negatively correlated with neural activity related to working memory in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Takehito; Kimura, Yasuyuki; Seki, Chie; Ichise, Masanori; Yokokawa, Keita; Kawamura, Kazunori; Takahashi, Hidehiko; Higuchi, Makoto; Zhang, Ming-Rong; Suhara, Tetsuya; Yamada, Makiko

    2018-06-14

    The histamine H 3 receptor is regarded as a drug target for cognitive impairments in psychiatric disorders. H 3 receptors are expressed in neocortical areas, including the prefrontal cortex, the key region of cognitive functions such as working memory. However, the role of prefrontal H 3 receptors in working memory has not yet been clarified. Therefore, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) techniques, we aimed to investigate the association between the neural activity of working memory and the density of H 3 receptors in the prefrontal cortex. Ten healthy volunteers underwent both fMRI and PET scans. The N-back task was used to assess the neural activities related to working memory. H 3 receptor density was measured with the selective PET radioligand [ 11 C] TASP457. The neural activity of the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex during the performance of the N-back task was negatively correlated with the density of H 3 receptors in this region. Higher neural activity of working memory was associated with lower H 3 receptor density in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. This finding elucidates the role of H 3 receptors in working memory and indicates the potential of H 3 receptors as a therapeutic target for the cognitive impairments associated with neuropsychiatric disorders.

  13. A Latent Factor Analysis of Working Memory Measures Using Large-Scale Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Otto Waris

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Working memory (WM is a key cognitive system that is strongly related to other cognitive domains and relevant for everyday life. However, the structure of WM is yet to be determined. A number of WM models have been put forth especially by factor analytical studies. In broad terms, these models vary by their emphasis on WM contents (e.g., visuospatial, verbal vs. WM processes (e.g., maintenance, updating as critical, dissociable elements. Here we conducted confirmatory and exploratory factor analyses on a broad set of WM tasks, half of them numerical-verbal and half of them visuospatial, representing four commonly used task paradigms: simple span, complex span, running memory, and n-back. The tasks were selected to allow the detection of both content-based (visuospatial, numerical-verbal and process-based (maintenance, updating divisions. The data were collected online which allowed the recruitment of a large and demographically diverse sample of adults (n = 711. Both factor analytical methods pointed to a clear division according to task content for all paradigms except n-back, while there was no indication for a process-based division. Besides the content-based division, confirmatory factor analyses supported a model that also included a general WM factor. The n-back tasks had the highest loadings on the general factor, suggesting that this factor reflected high-level cognitive resources such as executive functioning and fluid intelligence that are engaged with all WM tasks, and possibly even more so with the n-back. Together with earlier findings that indicate high variability of process-based WM divisions, we conclude that the most robust division of WM is along its contents (visuospatial vs. numerical-verbal, rather than along its hypothetical subprocesses.

  14. Prospective memory, working memory, retrospective memory and self-rated memory performance in persons with intellectual disability

    OpenAIRE

    Levén, Anna; Lyxell, Björn; Andersson, Jan; Danielsson, Henrik; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between prospective memory, working memory, retrospective memory and self-rated memory capacity in adults with and without intellectual disability. Prospective memory was investigated by means of a picture-based task. Working memory was measured as performance on span tasks. Retrospective memory was scored as recall of subject performed tasks. Self-ratings of memory performance were based on the prospective and retrospective mem...

  15. Gaming is related to enhanced working memory performance and task-related cortical activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moisala, M; Salmela, V; Hietajärvi, L; Carlson, S; Vuontela, V; Lonka, K; Hakkarainen, K; Salmela-Aro, K; Alho, K

    2017-01-15

    Gaming experience has been suggested to lead to performance enhancements in a wide variety of working memory tasks. Previous studies have, however, mostly focused on adult expert gamers and have not included measurements of both behavioral performance and brain activity. In the current study, 167 adolescents and young adults (aged 13-24 years) with different amounts of gaming experience performed an n-back working memory task with vowels, with the sensory modality of the vowel stream switching between audition and vision at random intervals. We studied the relationship between self-reported daily gaming activity, working memory (n-back) task performance and related brain activity measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The results revealed that the extent of daily gaming activity was related to enhancements in both performance accuracy and speed during the most demanding (2-back) level of the working memory task. This improved working memory performance was accompanied by enhanced recruitment of a fronto-parietal cortical network, especially the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. In contrast, during the less demanding (1-back) level of the task, gaming was associated with decreased activity in the same cortical regions. Our results suggest that a greater degree of daily gaming experience is associated with better working memory functioning and task difficulty-dependent modulation in fronto-parietal brain activity already in adolescence and even when non-expert gamers are studied. The direction of causality within this association cannot be inferred with certainty due to the correlational nature of the current study. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Is working memory working against suggestion susceptibility? Results from extended version of DRM paradigm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maciaszek Patrycja

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper investigates relationship between working memory efficiency, defined as the result of its’ processing & storage capacity (Oberauer et al., 2003 and the tendency to (1 create assosiative memory distortions (false memories, FM; (2 yield under the influence of external, suggesting factors. Both issues were examined using extended version of Deese-Roediger-McDermott procedure (1959, 1995, modified in order to meet the study demands. Suggestion was contained in an ostentatious feedback information the participants (N=88 received during the DRM procedure. Working memory (WM was measured by standardized tasks (n-back, Jaeggi et al., 2010; automatic-ospan, Unsworth et al., 2005. Study included 3 conditions, differing in the quality of suggestion (positive, negative or neutral. Participants were assigned into 3 groups, depending on results they achieved completing the WM tasks. Obtained results alongside the previously set hypothesis, revealed that (1 WM impacts individuals’ tendency to create false memories in DRM and (2 that the individuals showing higher rates in WM tasks are less willing to yield to suggestion compared to those with lesser ones. It also showed that the greater amount to shift (Gudjonsson, 2003, emerges under the negative suggestion condition (collating positive. Notwithstanding that the interaction effect did not achieve saliency, both analyzed factors (WM and suggesting content are considered as meaningful to explain memory suggestion susceptibility in presented study. Although, obtained results emphasize the crucial role of WM efficiency, that is believed to decide the magnitude of feedback that is influential in every subject. Therefore, issue demands further exploration.

  17. Frontopolar cortical inefficiency may underpin reward and working memory dysfunction in bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jogia, Jigar; Dima, Danai; Kumari, Veena; Frangou, Sophia

    2012-12-01

    Emotional dysregulation in bipolar disorder is thought to arise from dysfunction within prefrontal cortical regions involved in cognitive control coupled with increased or aberrant activation within regions engaged in emotional processing. The aim of this study was to determine the common and distinct patterns of functional brain abnormalities during reward and working memory processing in patients with bipolar disorder. Participants were 36 euthymic bipolar disorder patients and 37 healthy comparison subjects matched for age, sex and IQ. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was conducted during the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and the n-back working memory task. During both tasks, patients with bipolar disorder demonstrated a pattern of inefficient engagement within the ventral frontopolar prefrontal cortex with evidence of segregation along the medial-lateral dimension for reward and working memory processing, respectively. Moreover, patients also showed greater activation in the anterior cingulate cortex during the Iowa Gambling Task and in the insula during the n-back task. Our data implicate ventral frontopolar dysfunction as a core abnormality underpinning bipolar disorder and confirm that overactivation in regions involved in emotional arousal is present even in tasks that do not typically engage emotional systems.

  18. No significant effect of prefrontal tDCS on working memory performance in older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonna eNilsson

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS has been put forward as a non-pharmacological alternative for alleviating cognitive decline in old age. Although results have shown some promise, little is known about the optimal stimulation parameters for modulation in the cognitive domain. In this study, the effects of tDCS over the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC on working memory performance were investigated in thirty older adults. An N-back task assessed working memory before, during and after anodal tDCS at a current strength of 1mA and 2mA, in addition to sham stimulation. The study used a single-blind, cross-over design. The results revealed no significant effect of tDCS on accuracy or response times during or after stimulation, for any of the current strengths. These results suggest that a single session of tDCS over the dlPFC is unlikely to improve working memory, as assessed by an N-back task, in old age.

  19. Enhanced emotional interference on working memory performance in adults with ADHD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marx, Ivo; Domes, Gregor; Havenstein, Carolin; Berger, Christoph; Schulze, Lars; Herpertz, Sabine C

    2011-09-01

    Subjects with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) suffer from both executive dysfunction and deficits in emotion regulation. However, up to now, there has been no research demonstrating a clear impact of emotional dysregulation on cognitive performance in subjects with ADHD. Male and female adults with ADHD (n=39) and gender- and IQ-matched control subjects (n=40) performed an emotional working memory task (n-back task). In the background of the task, we presented neutral and negative stimuli varied in emotional saliency (negative pictures with low saliency, negative pictures with high saliency), but subjects were instructed to ignore these pictures and to process the working memory task as quickly and as accurately as possible. Compared to control subjects, ADHD patients showed both a general working memory deficit and enhanced distractability by emotionally salient stimuli in terms of lower n-back performance accuracy. In particular, while controls showed impaired WM performance when presented with highly arousing negative background pictures, a comparable decrement was observed in the ADHD group already with lowly arousing pictures. Our results suggest that difficulties in suppressing attention towards emotionally laden stimuli might result from deficient executive control in ADHD.

  20. The Effects of Green Tea Extract on Working Memory in Healthy Women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Y; Fly, A D; Wang, Z; Klaunig, J E

    2018-01-01

    This study aimed to examine the effects of green tea extract on working memory in healthy younger (21 - 29 y) and older (50 - 63 y) women. A single-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover design was used. A university laboratory. Twenty non-smoking Caucasian women were recruited in the younger (10) and older (10) age group. Subjects received 5.4 g green tea extract (at least 45% epigallocatechin-3-gallate) or placebo (cornstarch) within a 24-hour period. Working memory was measured by reading span and N-back task paradigm. Blood sample (20 mL) was collected and measured for plasma malondialdehyde (MDA) and total antioxidant capacity (TEAC) concentration. A 24-hour recall was conducted for each treatment period to ensure similar dietary patterns. Green tea extract significantly improved reading span performance in older women, indicated by higher absolute and partial scores of reading span. No significant changes were observed in the younger group. N-back latencies and accuracies were not significantly different after green tea treatment in either age group. Plasma concentration of MDA and TEAC were not different after green tea extract in either group. Acute supplementation of decaffeinated green tea extract may enhance working memory capacity of women between 50 to 63 years of age. This study provides preliminary evidence that consumption of green tea extract may enhance the cognitive performance in older adults and thus provide potential chemopreventive benefits in this group. The mechanism should be explored in future research.

  1. Training working memory to reduce rumination.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Onraedt

    Full Text Available Cognitive symptoms of depression, such as rumination, have shown to be associated with deficits in working memory functioning. More precisely, the capacity to expel irrelevant negative information from working memory seems to be affected. Even though these associations have repeatedly been demonstrated, the nature and causal direction of this association is still unclear. Therefore, within an experimental design, we tried to manipulate working memory functioning of participants with heightened rumination scores in two similar experiments (n = 72 and n = 45 using a six day working memory training compared to active and passive control groups. Subsequently the effects on the processing of non-emotional and emotional information in working memory were monitored. In both experiments, performance during the training task significantly increased, but this performance gain did not transfer to the outcome working memory tasks or rumination and depression measures. Possible explanations for the failure to find transfer effects are discussed.

  2. The Effects of Theta and Gamma tACS on Working Memory and Electrophysiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Pahor

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available A single blind sham-controlled study was conducted to explore the effects of theta and gamma transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS on offline performance on working memory tasks. In order to systematically investigate how specific parameters of tACS affect working memory, we manipulated the frequency of stimulation (theta frequency vs. gamma frequency, the type of task (n-back vs. change detection task and the content of the tasks (verbal vs. figural stimuli. A repeated measures design was used that consisted of three sessions: theta tACS, gamma tACS and sham tACS. In total, four experiments were conducted which differed only with respect to placement of tACS electrodes (bilateral frontal, bilateral parietal, left fronto-parietal and right-fronto parietal. Healthy female students (N = 72 were randomly assigned to one of these groups, hence we were able to assess the efficacy of theta and gamma tACS applied over different brain areas, contrasted against sham stimulation. The pre-post/sham resting electroencephalogram (EEG analysis showed that theta tACS significantly affected theta amplitude, whereas gamma tACS had no significant effect on EEG amplitude in any of the frequency bands of interest. Gamma tACS did not significantly affect working memory performance compared to sham, and theta tACS led to inconsistent changes in performance on the n-back tasks. Active theta tACS significantly affected P3 amplitude and latency during performance on the n-back tasks in the bilateral parietal and right-fronto parietal protocols.

  3. Relating color working memory and color perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allred, Sarah R; Flombaum, Jonathan I

    2014-11-01

    Color is the most frequently studied feature in visual working memory (VWM). Oddly, much of this work de-emphasizes perception, instead making simplifying assumptions about the inputs served to memory. We question these assumptions in light of perception research, and we identify important points of contact between perception and working memory in the case of color. Better characterization of its perceptual inputs will be crucial for elucidating the structure and function of VWM. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Transfer after Working Memory Updating Training

    OpenAIRE

    Waris, Otto; Soveri, Anna; Laine, Matti

    2015-01-01

    During the past decade, working memory training has attracted much interest. However, the training outcomes have varied between studies and methodological problems have hampered the interpretation of results. The current study examined transfer after working memory updating training by employing an extensive battery of pre-post cognitive measures with a focus on near transfer. Thirty-one healthy Finnish young adults were randomized into either a working memory training group or an active cont...

  5. How Human Memory and Working Memory Work in Second Language Acquisition

    OpenAIRE

    小那覇, 洋子; Onaha, Hiroko

    2014-01-01

    We often draw an analogy between human memory and computers. Information around us is taken into our memory storage first, and then we use the information in storage whatever we need it in our daily life. Linguistic information is also in storage and we process our thoughts based on the memory that is stored. Memory storage consists of multiple memory systems; one of which is called working memory that includes short-term memory. Working memory is the central system that underpins the process...

  6. The Polarity-Dependent Effects of the Bilateral Brain Stimulation on Working Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Keshvari

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Working memory plays a critical role in cognitive processes which are central to our daily life. Neuroimaging studies have shown that one of the most important areas corresponding to the working memory is the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLFPC. This study was aimed to assess whether bilateral modulation of the DLPFC using a noninvasive brain stimulation, namely transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS, modi.es the working memory function in healthy adults.Methods: In a randomized sham-controlled cross-over study, 60 subjects (30 Males received sham and active tDCS in two subgroups (anode left/cathode right and anode right/cathode left of the DLPFC. Subjects were presented working memory n-back task while the reaction time and accuracy were recorded.Results: A repeated measures, mixed design ANOVA indicated a signi.cant difference between the type of stimulation (sham vs. active in anodal stimulation of the left DLPFC with cathodal stimulation of the right DLPFC [F(1,55= 5.29,  P=0.019], but not the inverse polarity worsened accuracy in the 2-back working memory task. There were also no statistically signi.cant changes in speed of working memory [F(1,55= 0.458 ,P=0.502] related to type or order of stimulation..Discussion: The results would imply to a polarity dependence of bilateral tDCS of working memory. Left anodal/ right cathodal stimulation of DLPFC could impair working memory, while the reverser stimulation had no effect. Meaning that bilateral stimulation of DLFC would not be a useful procedure to improve working memory. Further studies are required to understand subtle effects of different tDCS stimulation/inhibition electrode positioning on the working memory.

  7. Working Memory Capacity, Confidence and Scientific Thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Ahmadi, Fatheya; Oraif, Fatima

    2009-01-01

    Working memory capacity is now well established as a rate determining factor in much learning and assessment, especially in the sciences. Most of the research has focussed on performance in tests and examinations in subject areas. This paper outlines some exploratory work in which other outcomes are related to working memory capacity. Confidence…

  8. Making working memory work: the effects of extended practice on focus capacity and the processes of updating, forward access, and random access.

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    Price, John M; Colflesh, Gregory J H; Cerella, John; Verhaeghen, Paul

    2014-05-01

    We investigated the effects of 10h of practice on variations of the N-Back task to investigate the processes underlying possible expansion of the focus of attention within working memory. Using subtractive logic, we showed that random access (i.e., Sternberg-like search) yielded a modest effect (a 50% increase in speed) whereas the processes of forward access (i.e., retrieval in order, as in a standard N-Back task) and updating (i.e., changing the contents of working memory) were executed about 5 times faster after extended practice. We additionally found that extended practice increased working memory capacity as measured by the size of the focus of attention for the forward-access task, but not for variations where probing was in random order. This suggests that working memory capacity may depend on the type of search process engaged, and that certain working-memory-related cognitive processes are more amenable to practice than others. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Visual working memory capacity and proactive interference.

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    Hartshorne, Joshua K

    2008-07-23

    Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. Working memory capacity was probed behaviorally in adult humans both in laboratory settings and via the Internet. Several experiments show that although the effect of proactive interference on visual working memory is significant and can last over several trials, it only changes the capacity estimate by about 15%. This study further confirms the sharp limitations on visual working memory capacity, both in absolute terms and relative to verbal working memory. It is suggested that future research take these limitations into account in understanding differences across a variety of tasks between human adults, prelinguistic infants and nonlinguistic animals.

  10. Visual working memory capacity and proactive interference.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua K Hartshorne

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Working memory capacity was probed behaviorally in adult humans both in laboratory settings and via the Internet. Several experiments show that although the effect of proactive interference on visual working memory is significant and can last over several trials, it only changes the capacity estimate by about 15%. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study further confirms the sharp limitations on visual working memory capacity, both in absolute terms and relative to verbal working memory. It is suggested that future research take these limitations into account in understanding differences across a variety of tasks between human adults, prelinguistic infants and nonlinguistic animals.

  11. Interactions between working memory and selective attention

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Event-related potential (ERP) was used to examine the interactions between working memory and selective attention. We combined two unrelated tasks, one requiring working memory and the other selective attention, which were performed by some undergraduates. The ERP results revealed that both congruent and incongruent stimuli in the selective attention task evoked an N400 component, reaching the peak point at around 500 ms. The N400 evoked by incongruent stimuli was more negative than that of congruent, which indicated the difference of semantic N400. Furthermore, working memory load had a significant influence on the N400 evoked by selective attention task in parietal region. And working memory load showed difference in the ERPs of working memory retrieval in central and parietal regions. The ERPs of probe under high working memory load were more positive from 350 to 550 ms post-stimulus; however, stimulus type of selective attention had no influence on working memory retrieval. The present study shows that working memory does not play a major role in the selective attention, especially in ignoring distracter, but it influences the performance of the selective attention as the background. The congruency of target and distracter in the selective attention task does not influence the working memory retrieval.

  12. Working memory affects false memory production for emotional events.

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    Mirandola, Chiara; Toffalini, Enrico; Ciriello, Alfonso; Cornoldi, Cesare

    2017-01-01

    Whereas a link between working memory (WM) and memory distortions has been demonstrated, its influence on emotional false memories is unclear. In two experiments, a verbal WM task and a false memory paradigm for negative, positive or neutral events were employed. In Experiment 1, we investigated individual differences in verbal WM and found that the interaction between valence and WM predicted false recognition, with negative and positive material protecting high WM individuals against false remembering; the beneficial effect of negative material disappeared in low WM participants. In Experiment 2, we lowered the WM capacity of half of the participants with a double task request, which led to an overall increase in false memories; furthermore, consistent with Experiment 1, the increase in negative false memories was larger than that of neutral or positive ones. It is concluded that WM plays a critical role in determining false memory production, specifically influencing the processing of negative material.

  13. Mental Imagery and Visual Working Memory

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    Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel

    2011-01-01

    Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory - but not iconic visual memory - can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage. PMID:22195024

  14. Mental imagery and visual working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca Keogh

    Full Text Available Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory--but not iconic visual memory--can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage.

  15. Mental imagery and visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel

    2011-01-01

    Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory--but not iconic visual memory--can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage.

  16. N-2 repetition leads to a cost within working memory and a benefit outside it.

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    Kessler, Yoav

    2018-03-15

    Removal has been suggested to play a key role in controlling the contents of working memory. The present study examined the aftereffects of removal in a working memory updating task. Participants performed the reference-back paradigm, a version of the n-back task that is composed of two trial types: reference trials that required working memory updating and comparison trials that did not require updating. N-2 repetition effects-the difference in performance between trials that presented the same stimulus as the one presented two trials before (ABA sequences) and trials in which the stimulus differed from the two previous stimuli (ABC sequences)-were examined. In two experiments, n-2 repetition costs were observed within sequences of reference trials, while n-2 repetition benefits were observed within sequences of comparison trials. This pattern suggests that removal takes place during working memory updating. Furthermore, automatic formation and updating of representation outside working memory, which takes place in comparison trials and gives rise to n-2 repetition benefits, does not involve removal. Removal, demonstrated by phenomena such as n-2 repetition costs, is therefore proposed to be a marker for the utilization of working memory within a given task. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.

  17. Event-related potentials elicited during working memory are altered in mild cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López Zunini, Rocío A; Knoefel, Frank; Lord, Courtney; Dzuali, Fiatsogbe; Breau, Michael; Sweet, Lisa; Goubran, Rafik; Taler, Vanessa

    2016-11-01

    Persons with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) can experience deficits in working memory. In the present study, we investigated working memory in persons with MCI and cognitively healthy older adults using event-related potentials (ERPs). Participants performed an n-back working memory task with baseline (0-back), low load (1-back), and high load (2-back) working memory conditions. MCI participants' performance was less accurate than that of healthy older adults in both the 1-back and 2-back conditions, and reaction times were longer in MCI than control participants in the 0-back, 1-back and 2-back conditions. ERP analyses revealed delayed P200 and N200 latencies and smaller P300 amplitudes in MCI relative to control participants in the 0-back, 1-back and 2-back conditions. Deterioration in working memory performance concomitant with marked electrophysiological alterations suggests that persons with MCI exhibit deficits in several cognitive processes that include early attention, stimulus discrimination and classification, and updating and manipulation of information held in working memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Working Memory and Developmental Language Impairments

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    Henry, Lucy A.; Botting, Nicola

    2017-01-01

    Children with developmental language impairments (DLI) are often reported to show difficulties with working memory. This review describes the four components of the well-established working memory model, and considers whether there is convincing evidence for difficulties within each component in children with DLI. The emphasis is on the most…

  19. Teaching Political Science through Memory Work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansson, Maria; Wendt, Maria; Ase, Cecilia

    2009-01-01

    In this article, we present the results of a research project where we have tried to elaborate more socially inclusive ways of teaching and learning political science by making use of a specific feminist method of analyzing social relations--memory work. As a method, memory work involves writing and interpreting stories of personal experience,…

  20. Working Memory Intervention: A Reading Comprehension Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry, Tracy L.; Malaia, Evguenia

    2013-01-01

    For any complex mental task, people rely on working memory. Working memory capacity (WMC) is one predictor of success in learning. Historically, attempts to improve verbal WM through training have not been effective. This study provided elementary students with WM consolidation efficiency training to answer the question, Can reading comprehension…

  1. Executive Functions and Working Memory Behaviours in Children with a Poor Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    St. Clair-Thompson, Helen L.

    2011-01-01

    Previous research has suggested that working memory difficulties play an integral role in children's underachievement at school. However, working memory is just one of several executive functions. The extent to which problems in working memory extend to other executive functions is not well understood. In the current study 38 children with a poor…

  2. Possible Association of APOE Genotype with Working Memory in Young Adults.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsey I Sinclair

    Full Text Available Possession of the ε4 allele of the Apolipoprotein E (APOE gene is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease. Early adult life effects of ε4 are less well understood. Working memory has been relatively little studied (compared to episodic memory in relation to APOE genotype despite its importance in cognitive functioning. Our hypothesis was that ε4 would lead to an impairment in working memory in young adults.We studied working memory using a computerised n-back task in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC at age 18. Data was available for 1049-1927 participants and for the 2- and 3-back versions of the task. Using multiple and multi-level regression controlling for important confounders we examined the association between APOE genotype on accuracy and reaction times.There was no evidence of a genotype effect on accuracy when the two difficulty levels were examined separately. There was some evidence to support a deleterious effect of the ε4 allele on n-back accuracy in the multi-level regression. There was weak evidence that the ε22 group were less accurate but the numbers were very low in this group. The ε34 group had faster reaction times than the reference ε33 group in all adjusted analyses but the ε44 group were only faster in the 3-back condition in multi-level analyses.There was no evidence of benefit in ε4 carriers, but there was some evidence of a detrimental effect on working memory in this large study.

  3. Working memory contributes to the encoding of object location associations: Support for a 3-part model of object location memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillis, M Meredith; Garcia, Sarah; Hampstead, Benjamin M

    2016-09-15

    A recent model by Postma and colleagues posits that the encoding of object location associations (OLAs) requires the coordination of several cognitive processes mediated by ventral (object perception) and dorsal (spatial perception) visual pathways as well as the hippocampus (feature binding) [1]. Within this model, frontoparietal network recruitment is believed to contribute to both the spatial processing and working memory task demands. The current study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to test each step of this model in 15 participants who encoded OLAs and performed standard n-back tasks. As expected, object processing resulted in activation of the ventral visual stream. Object in location processing resulted in activation of both the ventral and dorsal visual streams as well as a lateral frontoparietal network. This condition was also the only one to result in medial temporal lobe activation, supporting its role in associative learning. A conjunction analysis revealed areas of shared activation between the working memory and object in location phase within the lateral frontoparietal network, anterior insula, and basal ganglia; consistent with prior working memory literature. Overall, findings support Postma and colleague's model and provide clear evidence for the role of working memory during OLA encoding. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. A Brain System for Auditory Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sukhbinder; Joseph, Sabine; Gander, Phillip E; Barascud, Nicolas; Halpern, Andrea R; Griffiths, Timothy D

    2016-04-20

    The brain basis for auditory working memory, the process of actively maintaining sounds in memory over short periods of time, is controversial. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in human participants, we demonstrate that the maintenance of single tones in memory is associated with activation in auditory cortex. In addition, sustained activation was observed in hippocampus and inferior frontal gyrus. Multivoxel pattern analysis showed that patterns of activity in auditory cortex and left inferior frontal gyrus distinguished the tone that was maintained in memory. Functional connectivity during maintenance was demonstrated between auditory cortex and both the hippocampus and inferior frontal cortex. The data support a system for auditory working memory based on the maintenance of sound-specific representations in auditory cortex by projections from higher-order areas, including the hippocampus and frontal cortex. In this work, we demonstrate a system for maintaining sound in working memory based on activity in auditory cortex, hippocampus, and frontal cortex, and functional connectivity among them. Specifically, our work makes three advances from the previous work. First, we robustly demonstrate hippocampal involvement in all phases of auditory working memory (encoding, maintenance, and retrieval): the role of hippocampus in working memory is controversial. Second, using a pattern classification technique, we show that activity in the auditory cortex and inferior frontal gyrus is specific to the maintained tones in working memory. Third, we show long-range connectivity of auditory cortex to hippocampus and frontal cortex, which may be responsible for keeping such representations active during working memory maintenance. Copyright © 2016 Kumar et al.

  5. What's Working in Working Memory Training? An Educational Perspective

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    Redick, Thomas S.; Shipstead, Zach; Wiemers, Elizabeth A.; Melby-Lervåg, Monica; Hulme, Charles

    2015-01-01

    Working memory training programs have generated great interest, with claims that the training interventions can have profound beneficial effects on children's academic and intellectual attainment. We describe the criteria by which to evaluate evidence for or against the benefit of working memory training. Despite the promising results of initial…

  6. How Does Working Memory Work in the Classroom?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alloway, Tracy Packiam

    2006-01-01

    Working memory plays a key role in supporting children's learning over the school years, and beyond this into adulthood. It is proposed here that working memory is crucially required to store information while other material is being mentally manipulated during the classroom learning activities that form the foundations for the acquisition of…

  7. Working memory can enhance unconscious visual perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Yi; Cheng, Qiu-Ping; Luo, Qian-Ying

    2012-06-01

    We demonstrate that unconscious processing of a stimulus property can be enhanced when there is a match between the contents of working memory and the stimulus presented in the visual field. Participants first held a cue (a colored circle) in working memory and then searched for a brief masked target shape presented simultaneously with a distractor shape. When participants reported having no awareness of the target shape at all, search performance was more accurate in the valid condition, where the target matched the cue in color, than in the neutral condition, where the target mismatched the cue. This effect cannot be attributed to bottom-up perceptual priming from the presentation of a memory cue, because unconscious perception was not enhanced when the cue was merely perceptually identified but not actively held in working memory. These findings suggest that reentrant feedback from the contents of working memory modulates unconscious visual perception.

  8. Working memory training may increase working memory capacity but not fluid intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Tyler L; Shipstead, Zach; Hicks, Kenny L; Hambrick, David Z; Redick, Thomas S; Engle, Randall W

    2013-12-01

    Working memory is a critical element of complex cognition, particularly under conditions of distraction and interference. Measures of working memory capacity correlate positively with many measures of real-world cognition, including fluid intelligence. There have been numerous attempts to use training procedures to increase working memory capacity and thereby performance on the real-world tasks that rely on working memory capacity. In the study reported here, we demonstrated that training on complex working memory span tasks leads to improvement on similar tasks with different materials but that such training does not generalize to measures of fluid intelligence.

  9. The nature of working memory for Braille.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henri Cohen

    Full Text Available Blind individuals have been shown on multiple occasions to compensate for their loss of sight by developing exceptional abilities in their remaining senses. While most research has been focused on perceptual abilities per se in the auditory and tactile modalities, recent work has also investigated higher-order processes involving memory and language functions. Here we examined tactile working memory for Braille in two groups of visually challenged individuals (completely blind subjects, CBS; blind with residual vision, BRV. In a first experimental procedure both groups were given a Braille tactile memory span task with and without articulatory suppression, while the BRV and a sighted group performed a visual version of the task. It was shown that the Braille tactile working memory (BrWM of CBS individuals under articulatory suppression is as efficient as that of sighted individuals' visual working memory in the same condition. Moreover, the results suggest that BrWM may be more robust in the CBS than in the BRV subjects, thus pointing to the potential role of visual experience in shaping tactile working memory. A second experiment designed to assess the nature (spatial vs. verbal of this working memory was then carried out with two new CBS and BRV groups having to perform the Braille task concurrently with a mental arithmetic task or a mental displacement of blocks task. We show that the disruption of memory was greatest when concurrently carrying out the mental displacement of blocks, indicating that the Braille tactile subsystem of working memory is likely spatial in nature in CBS. The results also point to the multimodal nature of working memory and show how experience can shape the development of its subcomponents.

  10. The nature of working memory for Braille.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Henri; Voss, Patrice; Lepore, Franco; Scherzer, Peter

    2010-05-26

    Blind individuals have been shown on multiple occasions to compensate for their loss of sight by developing exceptional abilities in their remaining senses. While most research has been focused on perceptual abilities per se in the auditory and tactile modalities, recent work has also investigated higher-order processes involving memory and language functions. Here we examined tactile working memory for Braille in two groups of visually challenged individuals (completely blind subjects, CBS; blind with residual vision, BRV). In a first experimental procedure both groups were given a Braille tactile memory span task with and without articulatory suppression, while the BRV and a sighted group performed a visual version of the task. It was shown that the Braille tactile working memory (BrWM) of CBS individuals under articulatory suppression is as efficient as that of sighted individuals' visual working memory in the same condition. Moreover, the results suggest that BrWM may be more robust in the CBS than in the BRV subjects, thus pointing to the potential role of visual experience in shaping tactile working memory. A second experiment designed to assess the nature (spatial vs. verbal) of this working memory was then carried out with two new CBS and BRV groups having to perform the Braille task concurrently with a mental arithmetic task or a mental displacement of blocks task. We show that the disruption of memory was greatest when concurrently carrying out the mental displacement of blocks, indicating that the Braille tactile subsystem of working memory is likely spatial in nature in CBS. The results also point to the multimodal nature of working memory and show how experience can shape the development of its subcomponents.

  11. Impaired theta-gamma coupling during working memory performance in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barr, Mera S; Rajji, Tarek K; Zomorrodi, Reza; Radhu, Natasha; George, Tony P; Blumberger, Daniel M; Daskalakis, Zafiris J

    2017-11-01

    Working memory deficits represent a core feature of schizophrenia. These deficits have been associated with dysfunctional dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) cortical oscillations. Theta-gamma coupling describes the modulation of gamma oscillations by theta phasic activity that has been directly associated with the ordering of information during working memory performance. Evaluating theta-gamma coupling may provide greater insight into the neural mechanisms mediating working memory deficits in this disorder. Thirty-eight patients diagnosed with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder and 38 healthy controls performed the verbal N-Back task administered at 4 levels, while EEG was recorded. Theta (4-7Hz)-gamma (30-50Hz) coupling was calculated for target and non-target correct trials for each working memory load. The relationship between theta-gamma coupling and accuracy was determined. Theta-gamma coupling was significantly and selectively impaired during correct responses to target letters among schizophrenia patients compared to healthy controls. A significant and positive relationship was found between theta-gamma coupling and 3-Back accuracy in controls, while this relationship was not observed in patients. These findings suggest that impaired theta-gamma coupling contribute to working memory dysfunction in schizophrenia. Future work is needed to evaluate the predictive utility of theta-gamma coupling as a neurophysiological marker for functional outcomes in this disorder. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. Differences between Presentation Methods in Working Memory Procedures: A Matter of Working Memory Consolidation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricker, Timothy J.; Cowan, Nelson

    2014-01-01

    Understanding forgetting from working memory, the memory used in ongoing cognitive processing, is critical to understanding human cognition. In the past decade, a number of conflicting findings have been reported regarding the role of time in forgetting from working memory. This has led to a debate concerning whether longer retention intervals…

  13. Catastrophe models for cognitive workload and fatigue in N-back tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guastello, Stephen J; Reiter, Katherine; Malon, Matthew; Timm, Paul; Shircel, Anton; Shaline, James

    2015-04-01

    N-back tasks place a heavy load on working memory, and thus make good candidates for studying cognitive workload and fatigue (CWLF). This study extended previous work on CWLF which separated the two phenomena with two cusp catastrophe models. Participants were 113 undergraduates who completed 2-back and 3-back tasks with both auditory and visual stimuli simultaneously. Task data were complemented by several measures hypothesized to be related to cognitive elasticity and compensatory abilities and the NASA TLX ratings of subjective workload. The adjusted R2 was .980 for the workload model, which indicated a highly accurate prediction with six bifurcation (elasticity versus rigidity) effects: algebra flexibility, TLX performance, effort, and frustration; and psychosocial measures of inflexibility and monitoring. There were also two cognitive load effects (asymmetry): 2 vs. 3-back and TLX temporal demands. The adjusted R2 was .454 for the fatigue model, which contained two bifurcation variables indicating the amount of work done, and algebra flexibility as the compensatory ability variable. Both cusp models were stronger than the next best linear alternative model. The study makes an important step forward by uncovering an apparently complete model for workload, finding the role of subjective workload in the context of performance dynamics, and finding CWLF dynamics in yet another type of memory-intensive task. The results were also consistent with the developing notion that performance deficits induced by workload and deficits induced by fatigue result from the impact of the task on the workspace and executive functions of working memory respectively.

  14. On the impacts of working memory training on executive functioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiina eSalminen

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have reported improvements in a variety of cognitive functions following sole working memory (WM training. In spite of the emergence of several successful training paradigms, the scope of transfer effects has remained mixed. This is most likely due to the heterogeneity of cognitive functions that have been measured and tasks that have been applied. In the present study, we approached this issue systematically by investigating transfer effects from WM training to different aspects of executive functioning. Our training task was a demanding WM task that requires simultaneous performance of a visual and an auditory n-back task, while the transfer tasks tapped WM updating, coordination of the performance of multiple simultaneous tasks (i.e., dual-tasks and sequential tasks (i.e., task switching, and the temporal distribution of attentional processing. Additionally, we examined whether WM training improves reasoning abilities; a hypothesis that has so far gained mixed support. Following training, participants showed improvements in the trained task as well as in the transfer WM updating task. As for the other executive functions, trained participants improved in a task switching situation and in attentional processing. There was no transfer to the dual-task situation or to reasoning skills. These results therefore confirm previous findings that WM can be trained, and additionally, they show that the training effects can generalize to various other tasks tapping on executive functions.

  15. Working Memory Processing In Normal Subjects and Subjects with Dyslexia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowyer, S. M.; Lajiness-O'Neill, R.; Weiland, B. J.; Mason, K.; Tepley, N.

    2004-10-01

    Magnetoencephalography (MEG) was used to determine the neuroanatomical location of working memory (WM) processes. Differences between subjects with dyslexia (SD; n=5) and normal readers (NR; n=5) were studied during two WM tasks. A spatial WM task (SMW) consisted of blocks visually presented in one of 12 positions for 2 s each. Subjects were to determine if the current position matched the position presented 2 slides earlier (N-Back Test). The verbal task (VMW) consisted of presentation of a single letter. The location of cortical activity during SWM in NR (determined with MR-FOCUSS analysis) was in the right superior temporal gyrus (STG) and right angular gyrus (AG). Similar activation was seen in SD with a slight delay of approximately 20 ms. During VWM activity was seen in LEFT STG and LEFT AG in NR. In contrast for SD, activation was in the RIGHT STG and RIGHT AG. This study demonstrates the possibility to differentiate WM processing in subjects with and without learning disorders.

  16. Direct Access to Working Memory Contents

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bialkova, S.E.; Oberauer, K.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract. In two experiments participants held in working memory (WM) three digits in three different colors, and updated individual digits with the results of arithmetic equations presented in one of the colors. In the memory-access condition, a digit from WM had to be used as the first number in

  17. Working Memory and Binding in Sentence Recall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, A. D.; Hitch, G. J.; Allen, R. J.

    2009-01-01

    A series of experiments explored whether chunking in short-term memory for verbal materials depends on attentionally limited executive processes. Secondary tasks were used to disrupt components of working memory and chunking was indexed by the sentence superiority effect, whereby immediate recall is better for sentences than word lists. To…

  18. Accessibility Limits Recall from Visual Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajsic, Jason; Swan, Garrett; Wilson, Daryl E.; Pratt, Jay

    2017-01-01

    In this article, we demonstrate limitations of accessibility of information in visual working memory (VWM). Recently, cued-recall has been used to estimate the fidelity of information in VWM, where the feature of a cued object is reproduced from memory (Bays, Catalao, & Husain, 2009; Wilken & Ma, 2004; Zhang & Luck, 2008). Response…

  19. Stress Induction and Visual Working Memory Performance: The Effects of Emotional and Non-Emotional Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra Khayyer

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Background Some studies have shown working memory impairment following stressful situations. Also, researchers have found that working memory performance depends on many different factors such as emotional load of stimuli and gender. Objectives The present study aimed to determine the effects of stress induction on visual working memory (VWM performance among female and male university students. Methods This quasi-experimental research employed a posttest with only control group design (within-group study. A total of 62 university students (32 males and 30 females were randomly selected and allocated to experimental and control groups (mean age of 23.73. Using cold presser test (CPT, stress was induced and then, an n-back task was implemented to evaluate visual working memory function (such as the number of true items, time reactions, and the number of wrong items through emotional and non-emotional pictures. 100 pictures were selected from the international affective picture system (IASP with different valences. Results Results showed that stress impaired different visual working memory functions (P < 0.002 for true scores, P < 0.001 for reaction time, and P < 0.002 for wrong items. Conclusions In general, stress significantly decreases the VWM performances. On the one hand, females were strongly impressed by stress more than males and on the other hand, the VWM performance was better for emotional stimuli than non-emotional stimuli.

  20. Working Memory Deficits Predict Short-term Smoking Resumption Following Brief Abstinence*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, Freda; Jepson, Christopher; Loughead, James; Perkins, Kenneth; Strasser, Andrew A.; Siegel, Steven; Frey, Joseph; Gur, Ruben; Lerman, Caryn

    2009-01-01

    As many as one-half of smokers relapse in the first week following a quit attempt, and subjective reports of cognitive deficits in early abstinence are associated with increased relapse risk. This study examined whether objective cognitive performance after three days of abstinence predicts smoking resumption in a 7-day simulated quit attempt. Sixty-seven treatment-seeking smokers received either varenicline or placebo (randomized double-blind) for 21 days. Following medication run-up (days 1-10), there was a 3-day mandatory (biochemically confirmed) abstinence period (days 11-13) during which working memory (Letter-N-Back Task) and sustained attention (Continuous Performance Task) were assessed (day 13). Participants were then exposed to a scheduled smoking lapse and instructed to try to remain abstinent for the next 7 days (days 15-21). Poorer cognitive performance (slower correct reaction time on Letter-N-Back task) during abstinence predicted more rapid smoking resumption among those receiving placebo (p=.038) but not among those receiving varenicline. These data lend further support for the growing recognition that cognitive deficits involving working memory are a core symptom of nicotine withdrawal and a potential target for the development of pharmacological and behavioral treatments. PMID:19733449

  1. Working Memory Modulation of Frontoparietal Network Connectivity in First-Episode Schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jesper Duemose; Madsen, Kristoffer Hougaard; Wang, Zheng

    2017-01-01

    Working memory (WM) impairment is regarded as a core aspect of schizophrenia. However, the neural mechanisms behind this cognitive deficit remain unclear. The connectivity of a frontoparietal network is known to be important for subserving WM. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, the curr......Working memory (WM) impairment is regarded as a core aspect of schizophrenia. However, the neural mechanisms behind this cognitive deficit remain unclear. The connectivity of a frontoparietal network is known to be important for subserving WM. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging......, the current study investigated whether WM-dependent modulation of effective connectivity in this network is affected in a group of first-episode schizophrenia (FES) patients compared with similarly performing healthy participants during a verbal n-back task. Dynamic causal modeling (DCM) of the coupling...... between regions (left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), left inferior parietal lobe (IPL), and primary visual area) identified in a psychophysiological interaction (PPI) analysis was performed to characterize effective connectivity during the n-back task. The PPI analysis revealed that the connectivity...

  2. Theta-Gamma Coupling and Working Memory in Alzheimer’s Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle S. Goodman

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Working memory deficits are common among individuals with Alzheimer’s dementia (AD or mild cognitive impairment (MCI. Yet, little is known about the mechanisms underlying these deficits. Theta-gamma coupling—the modulation of high-frequency gamma oscillations by low-frequency theta oscillations—is a neurophysiologic process underlying working memory. We assessed the relationship between theta-gamma coupling and working memory deficits in AD and MCI. We hypothesized that: (1 individuals with AD would display the most significant working memory impairments followed by MCI and finally healthy control (HC participants; and (2 there would be a significant association between working memory performance and theta-gamma coupling across all participants. Ninety-eight participants completed the N-back working memory task during an electroencephalography (EEG recording: 33 with AD (mean ± SD age: 76.5 ± 6.2, 34 with MCI (mean ± SD age: 74.8 ± 5.9 and 31 HCs (mean ± SD age: 73.5 ± 5.2. AD participants performed significantly worse than control and MCI participants on the 1- and 2-back conditions. Regarding theta-gamma coupling, AD participants demonstrated the lowest level of coupling followed by the MCI and finally control participants on the 2-back condition. Finally, a linear regression analysis demonstrated that theta-gamma coupling (β = 0.69, p < 0.001 was the most significant predictor of 2-back performance. Our results provide evidence for a relationship between altered theta-gamma coupling and working memory deficits in individuals with AD and MCI. They also provide insight into a potential mechanism underlying working memory impairments in these individuals.

  3. [Formula: see text]Working memory and attention in pediatric brain tumor patients treated with and without radiation therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghubar, Kimberly P; Mahone, E Mark; Yeates, Keith Owen; Cecil, Kim M; Makola, Monwabisi; Ris, M Douglas

    2017-08-01

    Children are at risk for cognitive difficulties following the diagnosis and treatment of a brain tumor. Longitudinal studies have consistently demonstrated declines on measures of intellectual functioning, and recently it has been proposed that specific neurocognitive processes underlie these changes, including working memory, processing speed, and attention. However, a fine-grained examination of the affected neurocognitive processes is required to inform intervention efforts. Radiation therapy (RT) impacts white matter integrity, likely affecting those cognitive processes supported by distributed neural networks. This study examined working memory and attention in children during the early delayed stages of recovery following surgical resection and RT. The participants included 27 children diagnosed with pediatric brain tumor, treated with (n = 12) or without (n = 15) RT, who completed experimental and standardized measures of working memory and attention (n-back and digit span tasks). Children treated with radiation performed less well than those who did not receive radiation on the n-back measure, though performance at the 0-back level was considerably poorer than would be expected for both groups, perhaps suggesting difficulties with more basic processes such as vigilance. Along these lines, marginal differences were noted on digit span forward. The findings are discussed with respect to models of attention and working memory, and the interplay between the two.

  4. Oscillatory lower body negative pressure impairs working memory task-related functional hyperemia in healthy volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merchant, Sana; Medow, Marvin S; Visintainer, Paul; Terilli, Courtney; Stewart, Julian M

    2017-04-01

    Neurovascular coupling (NVC) describes the link between an increase in task-related neural activity and increased cerebral blood flow denoted "functional hyperemia." We previously showed induced cerebral blood flow oscillations suppressed functional hyperemia; conversely functional hyperemia also suppressed cerebral blood flow oscillations. We used lower body negative pressure (OLBNP) oscillations to force oscillations in middle cerebral artery cerebral blood flow velocity (CBFv). Here, we used N-back testing, an intellectual memory challenge as a neural activation task, to test the hypothesis that OLBNP-induced oscillatory cerebral blood flow can reduce functional hyperemia and NVC produced by a working memory task and can interfere with working memory. We used OLBNP (-30 mmHg) at 0.03, 0.05, and 0.10 Hz and measured spectral power of CBFv at all frequencies. Neither OLBNP nor N-back, alone or combined, affected hemodynamic parameters. 2-Back power and OLBNP individually were compared with 2-back power during OLBNP. 2-Back alone produced a narrow band increase in oscillatory arterial pressure (OAP) and oscillatory cerebral blood flow power centered at 0.0083 Hz. Functional hyperemia in response to 2-back was reduced to near baseline and 2-back memory performance was decreased by 0.03-, 0.05-, and 0.10-Hz OLBNP. OLBNP alone produced increased oscillatory power at frequencies of oscillation not suppressed by added 2-back. However, 2-back preceding OLBNP suppressed OLBNP power. OLBNP-driven oscillatory CBFv blunts NVC and memory performance, while memory task reciprocally interfered with forced CBFv oscillations. This shows that induced cerebral blood flow oscillations suppress functional hyperemia and functional hyperemia suppresses cerebral blood flow oscillations. NEW & NOTEWORTHY We show that induced cerebral blood flow oscillations suppress functional hyperemia produced by a working memory task as well as memory task performance. We conclude that oscillatory

  5. Bidirectional Frontoparietal Oscillatory Systems Support Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Elizabeth L; Dewar, Callum D; Solbakk, Anne-Kristin; Endestad, Tor; Meling, Torstein R; Knight, Robert T

    2017-06-19

    The ability to represent and select information in working memory provides the neurobiological infrastructure for human cognition. For 80 years, dominant views of working memory have focused on the key role of prefrontal cortex (PFC) [1-8]. However, more recent work has implicated posterior cortical regions [9-12], suggesting that PFC engagement during working memory is dependent on the degree of executive demand. We provide evidence from neurological patients with discrete PFC damage that challenges the dominant models attributing working memory to PFC-dependent systems. We show that neural oscillations, which provide a mechanism for PFC to communicate with posterior cortical regions [13], independently subserve communications both to and from PFC-uncovering parallel oscillatory mechanisms for working memory. Fourteen PFC patients and 20 healthy, age-matched controls performed a working memory task where they encoded, maintained, and actively processed information about pairs of common shapes. In controls, the electroencephalogram (EEG) exhibited oscillatory activity in the low-theta range over PFC and directional connectivity from PFC to parieto-occipital regions commensurate with executive processing demands. Concurrent alpha-beta oscillations were observed over parieto-occipital regions, with directional connectivity from parieto-occipital regions to PFC, regardless of processing demands. Accuracy, PFC low-theta activity, and PFC → parieto-occipital connectivity were attenuated in patients, revealing a PFC-independent, alpha-beta system. The PFC patients still demonstrated task proficiency, which indicates that the posterior alpha-beta system provides sufficient resources for working memory. Taken together, our findings reveal neurologically dissociable PFC and parieto-occipital systems and suggest that parallel, bidirectional oscillatory systems form the basis of working memory. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. Synaptic Correlates of Working Memory Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mi, Yuanyuan; Katkov, Mikhail; Tsodyks, Misha

    2017-01-18

    Psychological studies indicate that human ability to keep information in readily accessible working memory is limited to four items for most people. This extremely low capacity severely limits execution of many cognitive tasks, but its neuronal underpinnings remain unclear. Here we show that in the framework of synaptic theory of working memory, capacity can be analytically estimated to scale with characteristic time of short-term synaptic depression relative to synaptic current time constant. The number of items in working memory can be regulated by external excitation, enabling the system to be tuned to the desired load and to clear the working memory of currently held items to make room for new ones. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. The neural bases of orthographic working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy Purcell

    2014-04-01

    First, these results reveal a neurotopography of OWM lesion sites that is well-aligned with results from neuroimaging of orthographic working memory in neurally intact participants (Rapp & Dufor, 2011. Second, the dorsal neurotopography of the OWM lesion overlap is clearly distinct from what has been reported for lesions associated with either lexical or sublexical deficits (e.g., Henry, Beeson, Stark, & Rapcsak, 2007; Rapcsak & Beeson, 2004; these have, respectively, been identified with the inferior occipital/temporal and superior temporal/inferior parietal regions. These neurotopographic distinctions support the claims of the computational distinctiveness of long-term vs. working memory operations. The specific lesion loci raise a number of questions to be discussed regarding: (a the selectivity of these regions and associated deficits to orthographic working memory vs. working memory more generally (b the possibility that different lesion sub-regions may correspond to different components of the OWM system.

  8. Do Computerised Training Programmes Designed to Improve Working Memory Work?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apter, Brian J. B.

    2012-01-01

    A critical review of working memory training research during the last 10 years is provided. Particular attention is given to research that has attempted to investigate the efficacy of commercially marketed computerised training programmes such as "Cogmed" and "Jungle Memory". Claimed benefits are questioned on the basis that research methodologies…

  9. Attention to information in working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Oberauer Klaus; Hein Laura

    2012-01-01

    Working memory retains information and makes it available for processing. People often need to hold several chunks of information available while concentrating on only one of them. This process requires selective attention to the contents of working memory. In this article we summarize evidence for both a broad focus of attention with a capacity of approximately four chunks and a narrow focus of attention that selects a single chunk at a time.

  10. Shielding cognition from nociception with working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legrain, Valéry; Crombez, Geert; Plaghki, Léon; Mouraux, André

    2013-01-01

    Because pain often signals the occurrence of potential tissue damage, nociceptive stimuli have the capacity to capture attention and interfere with ongoing cognitive activities. Working memory is known to guide the orientation of attention by maintaining goal priorities active during the achievement of a task. This study investigated whether the cortical processing of nociceptive stimuli and their ability to capture attention are under the control of working memory. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants performed primary tasks on visual targets that required or did not require rehearsal in working memory (1-back vs 0-back conditions). The visual targets were shortly preceded by task-irrelevant tactile stimuli. Occasionally, in order to distract the participants, the tactile stimuli were replaced by novel nociceptive stimuli. In the 0-back conditions, task performance was disrupted by the occurrence of the nociceptive distracters, as reflected by the increased reaction times in trials with novel nociceptive distracters as compared to trials with standard tactile distracters. In the 1-back conditions, such a difference disappeared suggesting that attentional capture and task disruption induced by nociceptive distracters were suppressed by working memory, regardless of task demands. Most importantly, in the conditions involving working memory, the magnitude of nociceptive ERPs, including ERP components at early latency, were significantly reduced. This indicates that working memory is able to modulate the cortical processing of nociceptive input already at its earliest stages, and could explain why working memory reduces consequently ability of nociceptive stimuli to capture attention and disrupt performance of the primary task. It is concluded that protecting cognitive processing against pain interference is best guaranteed by keeping out of working memory pain-related information. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Social Working Memory: Neurocognitive networks and plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Meyer, Meghan Leigh

    2014-01-01

    The social world is incredibly complex and the ability to keep track of various pieces of social information at once is imperative for success as a social species. Yet, how humans manage social information in mind has to date remained a mystery. On the one hand, psychological models of working memory, or the ability to maintain and manipulate information in mind, suggest that managing social information in mind would rely on generic working memory processes. However, recent research in social...

  12. Training on Working Memory and Inhibitory Control in Young Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Jesus Maraver

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Different types of interventions have focused on trying to improve Executive Functions (EF due to their essential role in human cognition and behavior regulation. Although EF are thought to be diverse, most training studies have targeted cognitive processes related to working memory (WM, and fewer have focused on training other control mechanisms, such as inhibitory control (IC. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the differential impact of training WM and IC as compared with control conditions performing non-executive control activities. Young adults were divided into two training (WM/IC and two (active/passive control conditions. Over six sessions, the training groups engaged in three different computer-based adaptive activities (WM or IC, whereas the active control group completed a program with low control-demanding activities that mainly involved processing speed. In addition, motivation and engagement were monitored through the training. The WM-training activities required maintenance, updating and memory search processes, while those from the IC group engaged response inhibition, and interference control. All participants were pre- and post-tested in criterion tasks (n-back and Stroop, near transfer measures of WM (Operation Span and IC (Stop-Signal. Non-trained far transfer outcome measures included an abstract reasoning test (Raven’s Advanced Progressive Matrices and a well-validated experimental task (AX-CPT that provides indices of cognitive flexibility considering proactive/reactive control. Training results revealed that strongly motivated participants reached higher levels of training improvements. Regarding transfer effects, results showed specific patterns of near transfer effects depending on the type of training. Interestingly, it was only the IC training group that showed far transfer to reasoning. Finally, all trained participants showed a shift towards a more proactive mode of cognitive control, highlighting a

  13. Atypical spatiotemporal signatures of working memory brain processes in autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urbain, C M; Pang, E W; Taylor, M J

    2015-08-11

    Working memory (WM) impairments may contribute to the profound behavioural manifestations in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, previous behavioural results are discrepant as are the few functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) results collected in adults and adolescents with ASD. Here we investigate the precise temporal dynamics of WM-related brain activity using magnetoencephalography (MEG) in 20 children with ASD and matched controls during an n-back WM task across different load levels (1-back vs 2-back). Although behavioural results were similar between ASD and typically developing (TD) children, the between-group comparison performed on functional brain activity showed atypical WM-related brain processes in children with ASD compared with TD children. These atypical responses were observed in the ASD group from 200 to 600 ms post stimulus in both the low- (1-back) and high- (2-back) memory load conditions. During the 1-back condition, children with ASD showed reduced WM-related activations in the right hippocampus and the cingulate gyrus compared with TD children who showed more activation in the left dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex and the insulae. In the 2-back condition, children with ASD showed less activity in the left insula and midcingulate gyrus and more activity in the left precuneus than TD children. In addition, reduced activity in the anterior cingulate cortex was correlated with symptom severity in children with ASD. Thus, this MEG study identified the precise timing and sources of atypical WM-related activity in frontal, temporal and parietal regions in children with ASD. The potential impacts of such atypicalities on social deficits of autism are discussed.

  14. Working memory predicts the rejection of false memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leding, Juliana K

    2012-01-01

    The relationship between working memory capacity (WMC) and false memories in the memory conjunction paradigm was explored. Previous research using other paradigms has shown that individuals high in WMC are not as likely to experience false memories as low-WMC individuals, the explanation being that high-WMC individuals are better able to engage in source monitoring. In the memory conjunction paradigm participants are presented at study with parent words (e.g., eyeglasses, whiplash). At test, in addition to being presented with targets and foils, participants are presented with lures that are composed of previously studied features (e.g., eyelash). It was found that high-WMC individuals had lower levels of false recognition than low-WMC individuals. Furthermore, recall-to-reject responses were analysed (e.g., "I know I didn't see eyelash because I remember seeing eyeglasses") and it was found that high-WMC individuals were more likely to utilise this memory editing strategy, providing direct evidence that one reason that high-WMC individuals are not as prone to false memories is because they are better able to engage in source monitoring.

  15. Working memory capacity and controlled serial memory search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mızrak, Eda; Öztekin, Ilke

    2016-08-01

    The speed-accuracy trade-off (SAT) procedure was used to investigate the relationship between working memory capacity (WMC) and the dynamics of temporal order memory retrieval. High- and low-span participants (HSs, LSs) studied sequentially presented five-item lists, followed by two probes from the study list. Participants indicated the more recent probe. Overall, accuracy was higher for HSs compared to LSs. Crucially, in contrast to previous investigations that observed no impact of WMC on speed of access to item information in memory (e.g., Öztekin & McElree, 2010), recovery of temporal order memory was slower for LSs. While accessing an item's representation in memory can be direct, recovery of relational information such as temporal order information requires a more controlled serial memory search. Collectively, these data indicate that WMC effects are particularly prominent during high demands of cognitive control, such as serial search operations necessary to access temporal order information from memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Temporal dynamics of visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobczak-Edmans, M; Ng, T H B; Chan, Y C; Chew, E; Chuang, K H; Chen, S H A

    2016-01-01

    The involvement of the human cerebellum in working memory has been well established in the last decade. However, the cerebro-cerebellar network for visual working memory is not as well defined. Our previous fMRI study showed superior and inferior cerebellar activations during a block design visual working memory task, but specific cerebellar contributions to cognitive processes in encoding, maintenance and retrieval have not yet been established. The current study examined cerebellar contributions to each of the components of visual working memory and presence of cerebellar hemispheric laterality was investigated. 40 young adults performed a Sternberg visual working memory task during fMRI scanning using a parametric paradigm. The contrast between high and low memory load during each phase was examined. We found that the most prominent activation was observed in vermal lobule VIIIb and bilateral lobule VI during encoding. Using a quantitative laterality index, we found that left-lateralized activation of lobule VIIIa was present in the encoding phase. In the maintenance phase, there was bilateral lobule VI and right-lateralized lobule VIIb activity. Changes in activation in right lobule VIIIa were present during the retrieval phase. The current results provide evidence that superior and inferior cerebellum contributes to visual working memory, with a tendency for left-lateralized activations in the inferior cerebellum during encoding and right-lateralized lobule VIIb activations during maintenance. The results of the study are in agreement with Baddeley's multi-component working memory model, but also suggest that stored visual representations are additionally supported by maintenance mechanisms that may employ verbal coding. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Reduced ERPs and theta oscillations underlie working memory deficits in Toxoplasma gondii infected seniors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gajewski, Patrick D; Falkenstein, Michael; Hengstler, Jan G; Golka, Klaus

    2016-10-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is one of the most widespread infections in humans. Recent studies give evidence for memory deficits in infected older adults. To investigate working memory dysfunction in infected elderly, a double-blinded electrophysiological study was conducted. 84 persons derived from a sample of 131 healthy participants with the mean age of 70 years were assigned to two groups of 42 non-infected and 42 infected individuals. The outcome measures were behavioral performance, target and response-related ERPs, and time-frequency wavelets during performance in a n-back working-memory task. The infected individuals showed a reduced rate of detected targets and diminished P3b amplitude both in target-locked as well as response-locked data compared to the non-infected group. Time-frequency decomposition of the EEG-signals revealed lower evoked power in the theta frequency range in the target-locked as well as in the response-locked data in infected individuals. The reported effects were comparable with differences between healthy young and old adults described previously. Taking together, the reduced working-memory performance accompanied by an attenuated P3b and frontal theta activity may suggest neurotransmitter imbalance like dopamine and norepinephrine in T. gondii infected individuals. In face of a high prevalence of T. gondii infection and the increasing ratio of older population their accelerated memory decline may have substantial socioeconomic consequences. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Neural correlates of training and transfer effects in working memory in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinzel, Stephan; Lorenz, Robert C; Pelz, Patricia; Heinz, Andreas; Walter, Henrik; Kathmann, Norbert; Rapp, Michael A; Stelzel, Christine

    2016-07-01

    As indicated by previous research, aging is associated with a decline in working memory (WM) functioning, related to alterations in fronto-parietal neural activations. At the same time, previous studies showed that WM training in older adults may improve the performance in the trained task (training effect), and more importantly, also in untrained WM tasks (transfer effects). However, neural correlates of these transfer effects that would improve understanding of its underlying mechanisms, have not been shown in older participants as yet. In this study, we investigated blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signal changes during n-back performance and an untrained delayed recognition (Sternberg) task following 12sessions (45min each) of adaptive n-back training in older adults. The Sternberg task used in this study allowed to test for neural training effects independent of specific task affordances of the trained task and to separate maintenance from updating processes. Thirty-two healthy older participants (60-75years) were assigned either to an n-back training or a no-contact control group. Before (t1) and after (t2) training/waiting period, both the n-back task and the Sternberg task were conducted while BOLD signal was measured using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) in all participants. In addition, neuropsychological tests were performed outside the scanner. WM performance improved with training and behavioral transfer to tests measuring executive functions, processing speed, and fluid intelligence was found. In the training group, BOLD signal in the right lateral middle frontal gyrus/caudal superior frontal sulcus (Brodmann area, BA 6/8) decreased in both the trained n-back and the updating condition of the untrained Sternberg task at t2, compared to the control group. fMRI findings indicate a training-related increase in processing efficiency of WM networks, potentially related to the process of WM updating. Performance gains in untrained tasks

  19. Low-Arousal Speech Noise Improves Performance in N-Back Task: An ERP Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dandan; Jin, Yi; Luo, Yuejia

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity) and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits. PMID:24204607

  20. Low-arousal speech noise improves performance in N-back task: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Longzhu; Liu, Yunzhe; Zhang, Dandan; Jin, Yi; Luo, Yuejia

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity) and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits.

  1. Low-arousal speech noise improves performance in N-back task: an ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Longzhu Han

    Full Text Available The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits.

  2. Reduced prefrontal efficiency for visuospatial working memory in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bédard, Anne-Claude V; Newcorn, Jeffrey H; Clerkin, Suzanne M; Krone, Beth; Fan, Jin; Halperin, Jeffrey M; Schulz, Kurt P

    2014-09-01

    Visuospatial working memory impairments have been implicated in the pathophysiology of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, most ADHD research has focused on the neural correlates of nonspatial mnemonic processes. This study examined brain activation and functional connectivity for visuospatial working memory in youth with and without ADHD. Twenty-four youth with ADHD and 21 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging while performing an N-back test of working memory for spatial position. Block-design analyses contrasted activation and functional connectivity separately for high (2-back) and low (1-back) working memory load conditions versus the control condition (0-back). The effect of working memory load was modeled with linear contrasts. The 2 groups performed comparably on the task and demonstrated similar patterns of frontoparietal activation, with no differences in linear gains in activation as working memory load increased. However, youth with ADHD showed greater activation in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and left posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), greater functional connectivity between the left DLPFC and left intraparietal sulcus, and reduced left DLPFC connectivity with left midcingulate cortex and PCC for the high load contrast compared to controls (p 100 voxels). Reanalysis using a more conservative statistical approach (p 100 voxels) yielded group differences in PCC activation and DLPFC-midcingulate connectivity. Youth with ADHD show decreased efficiency of DLPFC for high-load visuospatial working memory and greater reliance on posterior spatial attention circuits to store and update spatial position than healthy control youth. Findings should be replicated in larger samples. Copyright © 2014 American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Increased working memory-related brain activity in middle-aged women with cognitive complaints.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumas, Julie A; Kutz, Amanda M; McDonald, Brenna C; Naylor, Magdalena R; Pfaff, Ashley C; Saykin, Andrew J; Newhouse, Paul A

    2013-04-01

    Individuals who report subjective cognitive complaints but perform normally on neuropsychological tests might be at increased risk for pathological cognitive aging. The current study examined the effects of the presence of subjective cognitive complaints on functional brain activity during a working memory task in a sample of middle-aged postmenopausal women. Twenty-three postmenopausal women aged 50-60 completed a cognitive complaint battery of questionnaires. Using 20% of items endorsed as the threshold, 12 women were categorized as cognitive complainers (CC) and 11 were noncomplainers (NC). All subjects then took part in a functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning session during which they completed a visual-verbal N-back test of working memory. Results showed no difference in working memory performance between CC and NC groups. However, the CC group showed greater activation relative to the NC group in a broad network involved in working memory including the middle frontal gyrus (Brodmann area [BA] 9 and 10), the precuneus (BA 7), and the cingulate gyrus (BA 24 and 32). The CC group recruited additional regions of the working memory network compared with the NC group as the working memory load and difficulty of the task increased. This study showed brain activation differences during working memory performance in a middle-aged group of postmenopausal women with subjective cognitive complaints but without objective cognitive deficit. These findings suggest that subjective cognitive complaints in postmenopausal women might be associated with increased cortical activity during effort-demanding cognitive tasks. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Transcranial direct current stimulation over the right DLPFC selectively modulates subprocesses in working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiarui Wang

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Background Working memory, as a complex system, consists of two independent components: manipulation and maintenance process, which are defined as executive control and storage process. Previous studies mainly focused on the overall effect of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS on working memory. However, little has been known about the segregative effects of tDCS on the sub-processes within working memory. Method Transcranial direct current stimulation, as one of the non-invasive brain stimulation techniques, is being widely used to modulate the cortical activation of local brain areas. This study modified a spatial n-back experiment with anodal and cathodal tDCS exertion on the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, aiming to investigate the effects of tDCS on the two sub-processes of working memory: manipulation (updating and maintenance. Meanwhile, considering the separability of tDCS effects, we further reconfirmed the causal relationship between the right DLPFC and the sub-processes of working memory with different tDCS conditions. Results The present study showed that cathodal tDCS on the right DLPFC selectively improved the performance of the modified 2-back task in the difficult condition, whereas anodal tDCS significantly reduced the performance of subjects and showed an speeding-up tendency of response time. More precisely, the results of discriminability index and criterion showed that only cathodal tDCS enhanced the performance of maintenance in the difficult condition. Neither of the two tDCS conditions affected the performance of manipulation (updating. Conclusion These findings provide evidence that cathodal tDCS of the right DLPFC selectively affects maintenance capacity. Besides, cathodal tDCS also serves as an interference suppressor to reduce the irrelevant interference, thereby indirectly improving the working memory capacity. Moreover, the right DLPFC is not the unique brain regions for working memory

  5. Load and distinctness interact in working memory for lexical manual gestures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary eRudner

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The Ease of Language Understanding model (ELU, Rönnberg et al., 2013 predicts that decreasing the distinctness of language stimuli increases working memory load; in the speech domain this notion is supported by empirical evidence. Our aim was to determine whether such an over-additive interaction can be generalized to sign processing in sign-naïve individuals and whether it is modulated by experience of computer gaming. Twenty young adults with no knowledge of sign language performed an n-back working memory task based on manual gestures lexicalized in sign language; the visual resolution of the signs and working memory load were manipulated. Performance was poorer when load was high and resolution was low. These two effects interacted over-additively, demonstrating that reducing the resolution of signed stimuli increases working memory load when there is no pre-existing semantic representation. This suggests that load and distinctness are handled by a shared amodal mechanism which can be revealed empirically when stimuli are degraded and load is high, even without pre-existing semantic representation. There was some evidence that the mechanism is influenced by computer gaming experience. Future work should explore how the shared mechanism is influenced by pre-existing semantic representation and sensory factors together with computer gaming experience.

  6. Load and distinctness interact in working memory for lexical manual gestures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudner, Mary; Toscano, Elena; Holmer, Emil

    2015-01-01

    The Ease of Language Understanding model (Rönnberg et al., 2013) predicts that decreasing the distinctness of language stimuli increases working memory load; in the speech domain this notion is supported by empirical evidence. Our aim was to determine whether such an over-additive interaction can be generalized to sign processing in sign-naïve individuals and whether it is modulated by experience of computer gaming. Twenty young adults with no knowledge of sign language performed an n-back working memory task based on manual gestures lexicalized in sign language; the visual resolution of the signs and working memory load were manipulated. Performance was poorer when load was high and resolution was low. These two effects interacted over-additively, demonstrating that reducing the resolution of signed stimuli increases working memory load when there is no pre-existing semantic representation. This suggests that load and distinctness are handled by a shared amodal mechanism which can be revealed empirically when stimuli are degraded and load is high, even without pre-existing semantic representation. There was some evidence that the mechanism is influenced by computer gaming experience. Future work should explore how the shared mechanism is influenced by pre-existing semantic representation and sensory factors together with computer gaming experience.

  7. Intrahemispheric theta rhythm desynchronization impairs working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alekseichuk, Ivan; Pabel, Stefanie Corinna; Antal, Andrea; Paulus, Walter

    2017-01-01

    There is a growing interest in large-scale connectivity as one of the crucial factors in working memory. Correlative evidence has revealed the anatomical and electrophysiological players in the working memory network, but understanding of the effective role of their connectivity remains elusive. In this double-blind, placebo-controlled study we aimed to identify the causal role of theta phase connectivity in visual-spatial working memory. The frontoparietal network was over- or de-synchronized in the anterior-posterior direction by multi-electrode, 6 Hz transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS). A decrease in memory performance and increase in reaction time was caused by frontoparietal intrahemispheric desynchronization. According to the diffusion drift model, this originated in a lower signal-to-noise ratio, known as the drift rate index, in the memory system. The EEG analysis revealed a corresponding decrease in phase connectivity between prefrontal and parietal areas after tACS-driven desynchronization. The over-synchronization did not result in any changes in either the behavioral or electrophysiological levels in healthy participants. Taken together, we demonstrate the feasibility of manipulating multi-site large-scale networks in humans, and the disruptive effect of frontoparietal desynchronization on theta phase connectivity and visual-spatial working memory.

  8. A continuous time-resolved measure decoded from EEG oscillatory activity predicts working memory task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astrand, Elaine

    2018-06-01

    Working memory (WM), crucial for successful behavioral performance in most of our everyday activities, holds a central role in goal-directed behavior. As task demands increase, inducing higher WM load, maintaining successful behavioral performance requires the brain to work at the higher end of its capacity. Because it is depending on both external and internal factors, individual WM load likely varies in a continuous fashion. The feasibility to extract such a continuous measure in time that correlates to behavioral performance during a working memory task remains unsolved. Multivariate pattern decoding was used to test whether a decoder constructed from two discrete levels of WM load can generalize to produce a continuous measure that predicts task performance. Specifically, a linear regression with L2-regularization was chosen with input features from EEG oscillatory activity recorded from healthy participants while performing the n-back task, [Formula: see text]. The feasibility to extract a continuous time-resolved measure that correlates positively to trial-by-trial working memory task performance is demonstrated (r  =  0.47, p  performance before action (r  =  0.49, p  <  0.05). We show that the extracted continuous measure enables to study the temporal dynamics of the complex activation pattern of WM encoding during the n-back task. Specifically, temporally precise contributions of different spectral features are observed which extends previous findings of traditional univariate approaches. These results constitute an important contribution towards a wide range of applications in the field of cognitive brain-machine interfaces. Monitoring mental processes related to attention and WM load to reduce the risk of committing errors in high-risk environments could potentially prevent many devastating consequences or using the continuous measure as neurofeedback opens up new possibilities to develop novel rehabilitation techniques for

  9. The cognitive neuroscience of working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Esposito, Mark; Postle, Bradley R

    2015-01-03

    For more than 50 years, psychologists and neuroscientists have recognized the importance of a working memory to coordinate processing when multiple goals are active and to guide behavior with information that is not present in the immediate environment. In recent years, psychological theory and cognitive neuroscience data have converged on the idea that information is encoded into working memory by allocating attention to internal representations, whether semantic long-term memory (e.g., letters, digits, words), sensory, or motoric. Thus, information-based multivariate analyses of human functional MRI data typically find evidence for the temporary representation of stimuli in regions that also process this information in nonworking memory contexts. The prefrontal cortex (PFC), on the other hand, exerts control over behavior by biasing the salience of mnemonic representations and adjudicating among competing, context-dependent rules. The "control of the controller" emerges from a complex interplay between PFC and striatal circuits and ascending dopaminergic neuromodulatory signals.

  10. The Nature of Individual Differences in Working Memory Capacity: Active Maintenance in Primary Memory and Controlled Search from Secondary Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unsworth, Nash; Engle, Randall W.

    2007-01-01

    Studies examining individual differences in working memory capacity have suggested that individuals with low working memory capacities demonstrate impaired performance on a variety of attention and memory tasks compared with individuals with high working memory capacities. This working memory limitation can be conceived of as arising from 2…

  11. Working Memory and Reasoning Benefit from Different Modes of Large-scale Brain Dynamics in Healthy Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebedev, Alexander V; Nilsson, Jonna; Lövdén, Martin

    2018-07-01

    Researchers have proposed that solving complex reasoning problems, a key indicator of fluid intelligence, involves the same cognitive processes as solving working memory tasks. This proposal is supported by an overlap of the functional brain activations associated with the two types of tasks and by high correlations between interindividual differences in performance. We replicated these findings in 53 older participants but also showed that solving reasoning and working memory problems benefits from different configurations of the functional connectome and that this dissimilarity increases with a higher difficulty load. Specifically, superior performance in a typical working memory paradigm ( n-back) was associated with upregulation of modularity (increased between-network segregation), whereas performance in the reasoning task was associated with effective downregulation of modularity. We also showed that working memory training promotes task-invariant increases in modularity. Because superior reasoning performance is associated with downregulation of modular dynamics, training may thus have fostered an inefficient way of solving the reasoning tasks. This could help explain why working memory training does little to promote complex reasoning performance. The study concludes that complex reasoning abilities cannot be reduced to working memory and suggests the need to reconsider the feasibility of using working memory training interventions to attempt to achieve effects that transfer to broader cognition.

  12. Working memory capacity in generalized social phobia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amir, Nader; Bomyea, Jessica

    2011-05-01

    Research suggests that understanding complex social cues depends on the availability of cognitive resources (e.g., Phillips, Channon, Tunstall, Hedenstrom, & Lyons, 2008). In spite of evidence suggesting that executive control functioning may impact anxiety (e.g., Eysenck, Derakshan, Santos, & Calvo, 2007), relatively few studies have examined working memory in individuals with generalized social phobia. Moreover, few studies have examined the role of threat-relevant content in working memory performance in clinically anxious populations. To this end, the present study assessed working memory capacity (WMC) in individuals with generalized social phobia and nonanxious controls using an operation span task with threat-relevant and neutral stimuli. Results revealed that nonanxious individuals demonstrated better WMC than individuals with generalized social phobia for neutral words but not for social threat words. Individuals with generalized social phobia demonstrated better WMC performance for threat words relative to neutral words. These results suggest that individuals with generalized social phobia may have relatively enhanced working memory performance for salient, socially relevant information. This enhanced working memory capacity for threat-relevant information may be the result of practice with this information in generalized social phobia.

  13. Differences between Presentation Methods in Working Memory Procedures: A Matter of Working Memory Consolidation

    OpenAIRE

    Ricker, Timothy J.; Cowan, Nelson

    2013-01-01

    Understanding forgetting from working memory, the memory used in ongoing cognitive processing, is critical to understanding human cognition. In the past decade, a number of conflicting findings have been reported regarding the role of time in forgetting from working memory. This has led to a debate concerning whether longer retention intervals necessarily result in more forgetting. An obstacle to directly comparing conflicting reports is a divergence in methodology across studies. Studies tha...

  14. Anxiety and working memory capacity: A meta-analysis and narrative review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Tim P

    2016-08-01

    Cognitive deficits are now widely recognized to be an important component of anxiety. In particular, anxiety is thought to restrict the capacity of working memory by competing with task-relevant processes. The evidence for this claim, however, has been mixed. Although some studies have found restricted working memory in anxiety, others have not. Within studies that have found impairments, there is little agreement regarding the boundary conditions of the anxiety/WMC association. The aim of this review is to critically evaluate the evidence for anxiety-related deficits in working memory capacity. First, a meta-analysis of 177 samples (N = 22,061 individuals) demonstrated that self-reported measures of anxiety are reliably related to poorer performance on measures of working memory capacity (g = -.334, p < 10-29). This finding was consistent across complex span (e.g., OSPAN; g = -.342, k = 30, N = 3,196, p = .000001), simple span (e.g., digit span; g = -.318, k = 127, N = 17,547, p < 10-17), and dynamic span tasks (e.g., N-Back; g = -.437, k = 20, N = 1,318, p = .000003). Second, a narrative review of the literature revealed that anxiety, whether self-reported or experimentally induced, is related to poorer performance across a wide variety of tasks. Finally, the review identified a number of methodological limitations common in the literature as well as avenues for future research. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  15. Dynamic working memory performance in individuals with single-domain amnestic mild cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guild, Emma B; Vasquez, Brandon P; Maione, Andrea M; Mah, Linda; Ween, Jon; Anderson, Nicole D

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have observed poorer working memory performance in individuals with amnestic mild cognitive impairment than in healthy older adults. It is unclear, however, whether these difficulties are true only of the multiple-domain clinical subtype in whom poorer executive functioning is common. The current study examined working memory, as measured by the self-ordered pointing task (SOPT) and an n-back task, in healthy older adults and adults with single-domain amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). Individuals with single-domain aMCI committed more errors and required longer to develop an organizational strategy on the SOPT. The single-domain aMCI group did not differ from healthy older adults on the 1-back or 2-back, but had poorer discrimination on the 3-back task. This is, to our knowledge, the first characterization of dynamic working memory performance in a single-domain aMCI group. These results lend support for the idea that clinical amnestic MCI subtypes may reflect different stages on a continuum of progression to dementia and question whether standardized measures of working memory (span tasks) are sensitive enough to capture subtle changes in performance.

  16. High-calorie food-cues impair working memory performance in high and low food cravers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meule, Adrian; Skirde, Ann Kathrin; Freund, Rebecca; Vögele, Claus; Kübler, Andrea

    2012-10-01

    The experience of food craving can lead to cognitive impairments. Experimentally induced chocolate craving exhausts cognitive resources and, therefore, impacts working memory, particularly in trait chocolate cravers. In the current study, we investigated the effects of exposure to food-cues on working memory task performance in a group with frequent and intense (high cravers, n=28) and less pronounced food cravings (low cravers, n=28). Participants performed an n-back task that contained either pictures of high-calorie sweets, high-calorie savory foods, or neutral objects. Current subjective food craving was assessed before and after the task. All participants showed slower reaction times and made more omission errors in response to food-cues, particularly savory foods. There were no differences in task performance between groups. State cravings did not differ between groups before the task, but increased more in high cravers compared to low cravers during the task. Results support findings about food cravings impairing visuo-spatial working memory performance independent of trait cravings. They further show that this influence is not restricted to chocolate, but also applies to high-calorie savory foods. Limiting working memory capacity may be especially crucial in persons who are more prone to high-calorie food-cues and experience such cravings habitually. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Is the Link from Working Memory to Analogy Causal? No Analogy Improvements following Working Memory Training Gains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richey, J. Elizabeth; Phillips, Jeffrey S.; Schunn, Christian D.; Schneider, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data [1], but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation [2]. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants’ performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks [3], [4]. Participants’ improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning. PMID:25188356

  18. Is the link from working memory to analogy causal? No analogy improvements following working memory training gains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Elizabeth Richey

    Full Text Available Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data, but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants' performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks. Participants' improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning.

  19. Is the link from working memory to analogy causal? No analogy improvements following working memory training gains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richey, J Elizabeth; Phillips, Jeffrey S; Schunn, Christian D; Schneider, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data, but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants' performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks. Participants' improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning.

  20. Does working memory training lead to generalized improvements in children with low working memory? A randomized controlled trial

    OpenAIRE

    Dunning, Darren L; Holmes, Joni; Gathercole, Susan E

    2013-01-01

    Children with low working memory typically make poor educational progress, and it has been speculated that difficulties in meeting the heavy working memory demands of the classroom may be a contributory factor. Intensive working memory training has been shown to boost performance on untrained memory tasks in a variety of populations. This first randomized controlled trial with low working memory children investigated whether the benefits of training extend beyond standard working memory tasks...

  1. An interference model of visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klaus; Lin, Hsuan-Yu

    2017-01-01

    The article introduces an interference model of working memory for information in a continuous similarity space, such as the features of visual objects. The model incorporates the following assumptions: (a) Probability of retrieval is determined by the relative activation of each retrieval candidate at the time of retrieval; (b) activation comes from 3 sources in memory: cue-based retrieval using context cues, context-independent memory for relevant contents, and noise; (c) 1 memory object and its context can be held in the focus of attention, where it is represented with higher precision, and partly shielded against interference. The model was fit to data from 4 continuous-reproduction experiments testing working memory for colors or orientations. The experiments involved variations of set size, kind of context cues, precueing, and retro-cueing of the to-be-tested item. The interference model fit the data better than 2 competing models, the Slot-Averaging model and the Variable-Precision resource model. The interference model also fared well in comparison to several new models incorporating alternative theoretical assumptions. The experiments confirm 3 novel predictions of the interference model: (a) Nontargets intrude in recall to the extent that they are close to the target in context space; (b) similarity between target and nontarget features improves recall, and (c) precueing-but not retro-cueing-the target substantially reduces the set-size effect. The success of the interference model shows that working memory for continuous visual information works according to the same principles as working memory for more discrete (e.g., verbal) contents. Data and model codes are available at https://osf.io/wgqd5/. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. Working-memory training improves developmental dyslexia in Chinese children★

    OpenAIRE

    Luo, Yan; Wang, Jing; Wu, Hanrong; Zhu, Dongmei; Zhang, Yu

    2013-01-01

    Although plasticity in the neural system underlies working memory, and working memory can be improved by training, there is thus far no evidence that children with developmental dyslexia can benefit from working-memory training. In the present study, thirty dyslexic children aged 8–11 years were recruited from an elementary school in Wuhan, China. They received working-memory training, including training in visuospatial memory, verbal memory, and central executive tasks. The difficulty of the...

  3. Assessing Working Memory in Spanish-Speaking Children: Automated Working Memory Assessment Battery Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Injoque-Ricle, Irene; Calero, Alejandra D.; Alloway, Tracy P.; Burin, Debora I.

    2011-01-01

    The Automated Working Memory Assessment battery was designed to assess verbal and visuospatial passive and active working memory processing in children and adolescents. The aim of this paper is to present the adaptation and validation of the AWMA battery to Argentinean Spanish-speaking children aged 6 to 11 years. Verbal subtests were adapted and…

  4. Working-memory consolidation : Insights from studies on attention and working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ricker, Timothy; Nieuwenstein, Mark; Bayliss, Donna; Barrouillet, Pierre

    2018-01-01

    Working memory, the system that maintains a limited set of representations for immediate use in cognition, is a central part of human cognition. Three processes have recently been proposed to govern information storage in working memory: Consolidation, refreshing and removal. Here we discuss in

  5. Working memory: a proposal for child evaluating

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayra Monteiro Pires

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The working memory is a system with limited capacity which allows the temporary storage and manipulation of information to cognitive complex abilities like language, learning and reasoning. This study has as the objective present the construction, the adaptation and the evaluation of four psycholinguistics working memory tests in Brazilian Portuguese that were based in the English battery of tests Memory Test Battery For Children. The tests adapted were applied in a pilot investigation in a group of 15 children with learning school difficulties and compared to a group of 15 children with normal development. The adaptation of the tests was developed in the E-Prime v2.0 Professional® software. The four psycholinguistic tests access the simultaneous storage and processing capacities of information in general domain, as also specific for language information. The results suggest that the four tests are sensible instruments to detect possible difficulties in the working memory processing in children, because they could identify the different performances between the two groups in a statistical analysis. The tests developed perfectly attended their aims for evaluation and can contribute in a near future for other studies with a greater number of subjects, providing a more concrete and evidences of working memory development in children.

  6. Working Memory in Students with Mathematical Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nur, I. R. D.; Herman, T.; Ningsih, S.

    2018-04-01

    Learning process is the activities that has important role because this process is one of the all factors that establish students success in learning. oftentimes we find so many students get the difficulties when they study mathematics. This condition is not only because of the outside factor but also it comes from the inside. The purpose of this research is to analyze and give the representation how students working memory happened in physical education students for basic statistics subjects which have mathematical difficulties. The subjects are 4 students which have a mathematical difficulties. The research method is case study and when the describe about students working memory are explanated deeply with naturalistic observation. Based on this research, it was founded that 4 students have a working memory deficit in three components. The components are phonological loop, visuospatial sketchpad, dan episodic buffer.

  7. Recollecting positive and negative autobiographical memories disrupts working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Richard J; Schaefer, Alexandre; Falcon, Thomas

    2014-09-01

    The present article reports two experiments examining the impact of recollecting emotionally valenced autobiographical memories on subsequent working memory (WM) task performance. Experiment 1 found that negatively valenced recollection significantly disrupted performance on a supra-span spatial WM task. Experiment 2 replicated and extended these findings to a verbal WM task (digit recall), and found that both negative and positive autobiographical recollections had a detrimental effect on verbal WM. In addition, we observed that these disruptive effects were more apparent on early trials, immediately following autobiographical recollection. Overall, these findings show that both positive and negative affect can disrupt WM when the mood-eliciting context is based on autobiographical memories. Furthermore, these results indicate that the emotional disruption of WM can take place across different modalities of WM (verbal and visuo-spatial). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Working on Memories of Abuse....

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horsman, Jenny

    1994-01-01

    Through working with a woman abused as a child, a teacher concluded that the violence of sexual, physical, and psychological abuse is common among many adults who read and write poorly. Their experiences should be acknowledged in literacy programs that encourage people to develop skills with which to tell their stories. (SK)

  9. Tactile Working Memory Outside our Hands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takako Yoshida

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The haptic perception of 2D images is believed to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, we need to store not only the current sensory information, but also to integrate this with kinesthetic information of the hand and fingers in order to generate a coherent percept. The question that arises is how much tactile memory we have for tactile stimuli that are no longer in contact with the skin during active touch? We examined working memory using a tactile change detection task with active exploration. Each trial contained two stimulation arrays. Participants engaged in unconstrained active tactile exploration of an array of vibrotactile stimulators. In half of the trials, one of the vibrating tactors that was active in the first stimulation turned off and another started vibrating in the second stimulation. Participants had to report whether the arrays were the same or different. Performance was near-perfect when up to two tactors were used and dropped linearly as the number of the vibrating tactors increased. These results suggest that the tactile working memory off the hand is limited and there is little or no memory integration across hand movements.

  10. Interactions between visual working memory representations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Gi-Yeul; Luck, Steven J

    2017-11-01

    We investigated whether the representations of different objects are maintained independently in working memory or interact with each other. Observers were shown two sequentially presented orientations and required to reproduce each orientation after a delay. The sequential presentation minimized perceptual interactions so that we could isolate interactions between memory representations per se. We found that similar orientations were repelled from each other whereas dissimilar orientations were attracted to each other. In addition, when one of the items was given greater attentional priority by means of a cue, the representation of the high-priority item was not influenced very much by the orientation of the low-priority item, but the representation of the low-priority item was strongly influenced by the orientation of the high-priority item. This indicates that attention modulates the interactions between working memory representations. In addition, errors in the reported orientations of the two objects were positively correlated under some conditions, suggesting that representations of distinct objects may become grouped together in memory. Together, these results demonstrate that working-memory representations are not independent but instead interact with each other in a manner that depends on attentional priority.

  11. [Working memory, phonological awareness and spelling hypothesis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gindri, Gigiane; Keske-Soares, Márcia; Mota, Helena Bolli

    2007-01-01

    Working memory, phonological awareness and spelling hypothesis. To verify the relationship between working memory, phonological awareness and spelling hypothesis in pre-school children and first graders. Participants of this study were 90 students, belonging to state schools, who presented typical linguistic development. Forty students were preschoolers, with the average age of six and 50 students were first graders, with the average age of seven. Participants were submitted to an evaluation of the working memory abilities based on the Working Memory Model (Baddeley, 2000), involving phonological loop. Phonological loop was evaluated using the Auditory Sequential Test, subtest 5 of Illinois Test of Psycholinguistic Abilities (ITPA), Brazilian version (Bogossian & Santos, 1977), and the Meaningless Words Memory Test (Kessler, 1997). Phonological awareness abilities were investigated using the Phonological Awareness: Instrument of Sequential Assessment (CONFIAS - Moojen et al., 2003), involving syllabic and phonemic awareness tasks. Writing was characterized according to Ferreiro & Teberosky (1999). Preschoolers presented the ability of repeating sequences of 4.80 digits and 4.30 syllables. Regarding phonological awareness, the performance in the syllabic level was of 19.68 and in the phonemic level was of 8.58. Most of the preschoolers demonstrated to have a pre-syllabic writing hypothesis. First graders repeated, in average, sequences of 5.06 digits and 4.56 syllables. These children presented a phonological awareness of 31.12 in the syllabic level and of 16.18 in the phonemic level, and demonstrated to have an alphabetic writing hypothesis. The performance of working memory, phonological awareness and spelling level are inter-related, as well as being related to chronological age, development and scholarity.

  12. Consciousness and working memory: Current trends and research perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velichkovsky, Boris B

    2017-10-01

    Working memory has long been thought to be closely related to consciousness. However, recent empirical studies show that unconscious content may be maintained within working memory and that complex cognitive computations may be performed on-line. This promotes research on the exact relationships between consciousness and working memory. Current evidence for working memory being a conscious as well as an unconscious process is reviewed. Consciousness is shown to be considered a subset of working memory by major current theories of working memory. Evidence for unconscious elements in working memory is shown to come from visual masking and attentional blink paradigms, and from the studies of implicit working memory. It is concluded that more research is needed to explicate the relationship between consciousness and working memory. Future research directions regarding the relationship between consciousness and working memory are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Verbal and spatial working memory among drug-using HIV-infected men and women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Eileen; Keutmann, M K; Fogel, J S; Maki, P M; Gonzalez, R; Vassileva, J; Rubin, L H; Hardy, D

    2018-04-23

    Working memory (WM) is a critical component of many neurocognitive functions. The literature has demonstrated consistently that WM impairment is more frequent and severe among substance-dependent individuals (SDIs) infected with HIV compared with uninfected SDIs; however, the SDIs who participated in these previous studies were primarily male. There are few published data on WM performance among HIV+ women with or without substance use disorders, and essentially no direct comparisons of WM performance between HIV+ men and women, regardless of substance use. We investigated potential sex and serostatus effects on WM among a sample of 360 SDIs (114 with HIV; 66% female) verified abstinent from alcohol and drugs of abuse at testing and generally comparable on substance use and comorbid characteristics. Participants were tested with the n-back task, a well-established WM measure that is sensitive to HIV-associated cognitive impairment. HIV+ men and women performed spatial and verbal versions of the n-back significantly less accurately compared with HIV- participants. Women showed slower response times compared with men on both versions, regardless of HIV serostatus. Individuals dependent on cocaine showed faster RTs compared with non-dependent users, but this effect was not apparent among opioid- or alcohol-dependent groups. Findings on n-back accuracy are consistent with our previous proposal that WM impairment represents a signature deficit among HIV+ SDIs; however, WM impairment appears less common among HIV+ women without a substance use history. The pattern of sex differences in response speed but serostatus effects on response accuracy is comparable to a recent report by our group of sex differences in learning speed but serostatus effects on delayed recall.

  14. Negative emotion modulates prefrontal cortex activity during a working memory task: A NIRS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sachiyo eOzawa

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the neural processing underlying the cognitive control of emotions induced by the presentation of task-irrelevant emotional pictures before a working memory task. Previous studies have suggested that the cognitive control of emotion involves the prefrontal regions. Therefore, we measured the hemodynamic responses that occurred in the prefrontal region with a 16-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS system. In our experiment, participants observed two negative or two neutral pictures in succession immediately before a 1-back or 3-back task. Pictures were selected from the International Affective Picture System. We measured the changes in the concentration of oxygenated hemoglobin (oxyHb during picture presentation and during the n-back task. The emotional valence of the picture affected the oxyHb changes in anterior parts of the medial prefrontal cortex (located in the left and right superior frontal gyrus and left inferior frontal gyrus during the n-back task; the oxyHb changes during the task were significantly greater following negative rather than neutral stimulation. As indicated in a number of previous studies, and the time courses of the oxyHb changes in our study, activation in these locations is possibly led by cognitive control of emotion, though we cannot deny it may simply be emotional responses. There were no effects of emotion on oxyHb changes during picture presentation or on n-back task performance. Although further studies are necessary to confirm this interpretation, our findings suggest that NIRS can be used to investigate neural processing during emotional control.

  15. Genetically determined measures of striatal D2 signaling predict prefrontal activity during working memory performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertolino, Alessandro; Taurisano, Paolo; Pisciotta, Nicola Marco; Blasi, Giuseppe; Fazio, Leonardo; Romano, Raffaella; Gelao, Barbara; Lo Bianco, Luciana; Lozupone, Madia; Di Giorgio, Annabella; Caforio, Grazia; Sambataro, Fabio; Niccoli-Asabella, Artor; Papp, Audrey; Ursini, Gianluca; Sinibaldi, Lorenzo; Popolizio, Teresa; Sadee, Wolfgang; Rubini, Giuseppe

    2010-02-22

    Variation of the gene coding for D2 receptors (DRD2) has been associated with risk for schizophrenia and with working memory deficits. A functional intronic SNP (rs1076560) predicts relative expression of the two D2 receptors isoforms, D2S (mainly pre-synaptic) and D2L (mainly post-synaptic). However, the effect of functional genetic variation of DRD2 on striatal dopamine D2 signaling and on its correlation with prefrontal activity during working memory in humans is not known. Thirty-seven healthy subjects were genotyped for rs1076560 (G>T) and underwent SPECT with [123I]IBZM (which binds primarily to post-synaptic D2 receptors) and with [123I]FP-CIT (which binds to pre-synaptic dopamine transporters, whose activity and density is also regulated by pre-synaptic D2 receptors), as well as BOLD fMRI during N-Back working memory. Subjects carrying the T allele (previously associated with reduced D2S expression) had striatal reductions of [123I]IBZM and of [123I]FP-CIT binding. DRD2 genotype also differentially predicted the correlation between striatal dopamine D2 signaling (as identified with factor analysis of the two radiotracers) and activity of the prefrontal cortex during working memory as measured with BOLD fMRI, which was positive in GG subjects and negative in GT. Our results demonstrate that this functional SNP within DRD2 predicts striatal binding of the two radiotracers to dopamine transporters and D2 receptors as well as the correlation between striatal D2 signaling with prefrontal cortex activity during performance of a working memory task. These data are consistent with the possibility that the balance of excitatory/inhibitory modulation of striatal neurons may also affect striatal outputs in relationship with prefrontal activity during working memory performance within the cortico-striatal-thalamic-cortical pathway.

  16. Genetically determined measures of striatal D2 signaling predict prefrontal activity during working memory performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Bertolino

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Variation of the gene coding for D2 receptors (DRD2 has been associated with risk for schizophrenia and with working memory deficits. A functional intronic SNP (rs1076560 predicts relative expression of the two D2 receptors isoforms, D2S (mainly pre-synaptic and D2L (mainly post-synaptic. However, the effect of functional genetic variation of DRD2 on striatal dopamine D2 signaling and on its correlation with prefrontal activity during working memory in humans is not known.Thirty-seven healthy subjects were genotyped for rs1076560 (G>T and underwent SPECT with [123I]IBZM (which binds primarily to post-synaptic D2 receptors and with [123I]FP-CIT (which binds to pre-synaptic dopamine transporters, whose activity and density is also regulated by pre-synaptic D2 receptors, as well as BOLD fMRI during N-Back working memory.Subjects carrying the T allele (previously associated with reduced D2S expression had striatal reductions of [123I]IBZM and of [123I]FP-CIT binding. DRD2 genotype also differentially predicted the correlation between striatal dopamine D2 signaling (as identified with factor analysis of the two radiotracers and activity of the prefrontal cortex during working memory as measured with BOLD fMRI, which was positive in GG subjects and negative in GT.Our results demonstrate that this functional SNP within DRD2 predicts striatal binding of the two radiotracers to dopamine transporters and D2 receptors as well as the correlation between striatal D2 signaling with prefrontal cortex activity during performance of a working memory task. These data are consistent with the possibility that the balance of excitatory/inhibitory modulation of striatal neurons may also affect striatal outputs in relationship with prefrontal activity during working memory performance within the cortico-striatal-thalamic-cortical pathway.

  17. Working Memory after Traumatic Brain Injury: The Neural Basis of Improved Performance with Methylphenidate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manktelow, Anne E; Menon, David K; Sahakian, Barbara J; Stamatakis, Emmanuel A

    2017-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) often results in cognitive impairments for patients. The aim of this proof of concept study was to establish the nature of abnormalities, in terms of activity and connectivity, in the working memory network of TBI patients and how these relate to compromised behavioral outcomes. Further, this study examined the neural correlates of working memory improvement following the administration of methylphenidate. We report behavioral, functional and structural MRI data from a group of 15 Healthy Controls (HC) and a group of 15 TBI patients, acquired during the execution of the N-back task. The patients were studied on two occasions after the administration of either placebo or 30 mg of methylphenidate. Between group tests revealed a significant difference in performance when HCs were compared to TBI patients on placebo [ F (1, 28) = 4.426, p performance demonstrated the most benefit from methylphenidate. Changes in the TBI patient activation levels in the Left Cerebellum significantly and positively correlated with changes in performance ( r = 0.509, df = 13, p = 0.05). Whole-brain connectivity analysis using the Left Cerebellum as a seed revealed widespread negative interactions between the Left Cerebellum and parietal and frontal cortices as well as subcortical areas. Neither the TBI group on methylphenidate nor the HC group demonstrated any significant negative interactions. Our findings indicate that (a) TBI significantly reduces the levels of activation and connectivity strength between key areas of the working memory network and (b) Methylphenidate improves the cognitive outcomes on a working memory task. Therefore, we conclude that methylphenidate may render the working memory network in a TBI group more consistent with that of an intact working memory network.

  18. Individual variation in working memory is associated with fear extinction performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stout, Daniel M; Acheson, Dean T; Moore, Tyler M; Gur, Ruben C; Baker, Dewleen G; Geyer, Mark A; Risbrough, Victoria B

    2018-03-01

    PTSD has been associated consistently with abnormalities in fear acquisition and extinction learning and retention. Fear acquisition refers to learning to discriminate between threat and safety cues. Extinction learning reflects the formation of a new inhibitory-memory that competes with a previously learned threat-related memory. Adjudicating the competition between threat memory and the new inhibitory memory during extinction may rely, in part, on cognitive processes such as working memory (WM). Despite significant shared neural circuits and signaling pathways the relationship between WM, fear acquisition, and extinction is poorly understood. Here, we analyzed data from a large sample of healthy Marines who underwent an assessment battery including tests of fear acquisition, extinction learning, and WM (N-back). Fear potentiated startle (FPS), fear expectancy ratings, and self-reported anxiety served as the primary dependent variables. High WM ability (N = 192) was associated with greater CS + fear inhibition during the late block of extinction and greater US expectancy change during extinction learning compared to individuals with low WM ability (N = 204). WM ability was not associated with magnitude of fear conditioning/expression. Attention ability was unrelated to fear acquisition or extinction supporting specificity of WM associations with extinction. These results support the conclusion that individual differences in WM may contribute to regulating fear responses. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  19. Illumination influences working memory: an EEG study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Jin Young; Min, Byoung-Kyong; Jung, Young-Chul; Pak, Hyensou; Jeong, Yeon-Hong; Kim, Eosu

    2013-09-05

    Illumination conditions appear to influence working efficacy in everyday life. In the present study, we obtained electroencephalogram (EEG) correlates of working-memory load, and investigated how these waveforms are modulated by illumination conditions. We hypothesized that illumination conditions may affect cognitive performance. We designed an EEG study to monitor and record participants' EEG during the Sternberg working memory task under four different illumination conditions. Illumination conditions were generated with a factorial design of two color-temperatures (3000 and 7100 K) by two illuminance levels (150 and 700 lx). During a working memory task, we observed that high illuminance led to significantly lower frontal EEG theta activity than did low illuminance. These differences persisted despite no significant difference in task performance between illumination conditions. We found that the latency of an early event-related potential component, such as N1, was significantly modulated by the illumination condition. The fact that the illumination condition affects brain activity but not behavioral performance suggests that the lighting conditions used in the present study did not influence the performance stage of behavioral processing. Nevertheless, our findings provide objective evidence that illumination conditions modulate brain activity. Further studies are necessary to refine the optimal lighting parameters for facilitating working memory. Copyright © 2013 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Spike-timing theory of working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Botond Szatmáry

    Full Text Available Working memory (WM is the part of the brain's memory system that provides temporary storage and manipulation of information necessary for cognition. Although WM has limited capacity at any given time, it has vast memory content in the sense that it acts on the brain's nearly infinite repertoire of lifetime long-term memories. Using simulations, we show that large memory content and WM functionality emerge spontaneously if we take the spike-timing nature of neuronal processing into account. Here, memories are represented by extensively overlapping groups of neurons that exhibit stereotypical time-locked spatiotemporal spike-timing patterns, called polychronous patterns; and synapses forming such polychronous neuronal groups (PNGs are subject to associative synaptic plasticity in the form of both long-term and short-term spike-timing dependent plasticity. While long-term potentiation is essential in PNG formation, we show how short-term plasticity can temporarily strengthen the synapses of selected PNGs and lead to an increase in the spontaneous reactivation rate of these PNGs. This increased reactivation rate, consistent with in vivo recordings during WM tasks, results in high interspike interval variability and irregular, yet systematically changing, elevated firing rate profiles within the neurons of the selected PNGs. Additionally, our theory explains the relationship between such slowly changing firing rates and precisely timed spikes, and it reveals a novel relationship between WM and the perception of time on the order of seconds.

  1. Functional brain activation associated with working memory training and transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Cameron M; Lawlor-Savage, Linette; Goghari, Vina M

    2017-09-15

    While behavioural trials of working memory (WM) training have received much attention in recent years, a lesser explored parallel approach is functional neuroimaging. A small literature has suggested a complex time course for functional activation pattern changes following WM training (i.e. not simply increasing or decreasing due to training); however, no study to date has examined such neuroplastic effects in both the training task (dual n-back) and the fluid intelligence transfer task to which the training is purported to transfer (Raven's Matrices). This study investigated neural correlates of WM training in healthy young adults randomized to six weeks of WM training, or an active control condition (processing speed training) with a pre- and post-training fMRI design. Results indicated significant reductions in activation for the WM trained group in key WM-task related areas for trained WM tasks after training compared to the processing speed active control group. The same pattern of training related decreases in activation for the WM trained group was not observed for the transfer task, which is consistent with null results for all cognitive outcomes of the present trial. The observed pattern of results suggests that repetitive practice with a complex task does indeed lead to neuroplastic processes that very likely represent the reduced demand for attentional control while sub-components of the task become more routinized with practice. We suggest that future research investigate neural correlates of WM training in populations for which WM itself is impaired and/or behavioural trials of WM training have returned more promising results. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Precision of working memory for speech sounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph, Sabine; Iverson, Paul; Manohar, Sanjay; Fox, Zoe; Scott, Sophie K; Husain, Masud

    2015-01-01

    Memory for speech sounds is a key component of models of verbal working memory (WM). But how good is verbal WM? Most investigations assess this using binary report measures to derive a fixed number of items that can be stored. However, recent findings in visual WM have challenged such "quantized" views by employing measures of recall precision with an analogue response scale. WM for speech sounds might rely on both continuous and categorical storage mechanisms. Using a novel speech matching paradigm, we measured WM recall precision for phonemes. Vowel qualities were sampled from a formant space continuum. A probe vowel had to be adjusted to match the vowel quality of a target on a continuous, analogue response scale. Crucially, this provided an index of the variability of a memory representation around its true value and thus allowed us to estimate how memories were distorted from the original sounds. Memory load affected the quality of speech sound recall in two ways. First, there was a gradual decline in recall precision with increasing number of items, consistent with the view that WM representations of speech sounds become noisier with an increase in the number of items held in memory, just as for vision. Based on multidimensional scaling (MDS), the level of noise appeared to be reflected in distortions of the formant space. Second, as memory load increased, there was evidence of greater clustering of participants' responses around particular vowels. A mixture model captured both continuous and categorical responses, demonstrating a shift from continuous to categorical memory with increasing WM load. This suggests that direct acoustic storage can be used for single items, but when more items must be stored, categorical representations must be used.

  3. ALE Meta-Analysis of Schizophrenics Performing the N-Back Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrell, Zachary

    2010-10-01

    MRI/fMRI has already proven itself as a valuable tool in the diagnosis and treatment of many illnesses of the brain, including cognitive problems. By exploiting the differences in magnetic susceptibility between oxygenated and deoxygenated hemoglobin, fMRI can measure blood flow in various regions of interest within the brain. This can determine the level of brain activity in relation to motor or cognitive functions and provide a metric for tissue damage or illness symptoms. Structural imaging techniques have shown lesions or deficiencies in tissue volumes in schizophrenics corresponding to areas primarily in the frontal and temporal lobes. These areas are currently known to be involved in working memory and attention, which many schizophrenics have trouble with. The ALE (Activation Likelihood Estimation) Meta-Analysis is able to statistically determine the significance of brain area activations based on the post-hoc combination of multiple studies. This process is useful for giving a general model of brain function in relation to a particular task designed to engage the affected areas (such as working memory for the n-back task). The advantages of the ALE Meta-Analysis include elimination of single subject anomalies, elimination of false/extremely weak activations, and verification of function/location hypotheses.

  4. Evidence against decay in verbal working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klaus; Lewandowsky, Stephan

    2013-05-01

    The article tests the assumption that forgetting in working memory for verbal materials is caused by time-based decay, using the complex-span paradigm. Participants encoded 6 letters for serial recall; each letter was preceded and followed by a processing period comprising 4 trials of difficult visual search. Processing duration, during which memory could decay, was manipulated via search set size. This manipulation increased retention interval by up to 100% without having any effect on recall accuracy. This result held with and without articulatory suppression. Two experiments using a dual-task paradigm showed that the visual search process required central attention. Thus, even when memory maintenance by central attention and by articulatory rehearsal was prevented, a large delay had no effect on memory performance, contrary to the decay notion. Most previous experiments that manipulated the retention interval and the opportunity for maintenance processes in complex span have confounded these variables with time pressure during processing periods. Three further experiments identified time pressure as the variable that affected recall. We conclude that time-based decay does not contribute to the capacity limit of verbal working memory. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.

  5. Reconceptualizing Working Memory in Educational Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenesi, Barbara; Sana, Faria; Kim, Joseph A.; Shore, David I.

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, research from cognitive science has provided a solid theoretical framework to develop evidence-based interventions in education. In particular, research into reading, writing, language, mathematics and multimedia learning has been guided by the application of Baddeley's multicomponent model of working memory. However, an…

  6. A Neural Region of Abstract Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowan, Nelson; Li, Dawei; Moffitt, Amanda; Becker, Theresa M.; Martin, Elizabeth A.; Saults, J. Scott; Christ, Shawn E.

    2011-01-01

    Over 350 years ago, Descartes proposed that the neural basis of consciousness must be a brain region in which sensory inputs are combined. Using fMRI, we identified at least one such area for working memory, the limited information held in mind, described by William James as the trailing edge of consciousness. Specifically, a region in the left…

  7. Evidence against Decay in Verbal Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klaus; Lewandowsky, Stephan

    2013-01-01

    The article tests the assumption that forgetting in working memory for verbal materials is caused by time-based decay, using the complex-span paradigm. Participants encoded 6 letters for serial recall; each letter was preceded and followed by a processing period comprising 4 trials of difficult visual search. Processing duration, during which…

  8. Aging and verbal working memory capacity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noort, M.W.M.L. van den; Bosch, M.P.C.; Kralingen, R.B.A.S. van

    2008-01-01

    Objectives. The development of verbal working memory capacity over time was investigated. xxx Methods. Four different age groups were tested with the new standard computerized version of the reading span test (Van den Noort et al., 2006, 2008). xxx Results. Compared to the young adults, the old

  9. Working Memory and Language: An Overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan

    2003-01-01

    This article introduces the concept of a multi-component working memory. Emphasis is placed on the phonological loop component, its fractionation into a storage and processing component, and implications for native and second language learning. An overview of the visual spatial sketchpad and its possible role in language is provided. (Contains…

  10. Modularity, Working Memory and Language Acquisition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan D.

    2017-01-01

    The concept of modularity is used to contrast the approach to working memory proposed by Truscott with the Baddeley and Hitch multicomponent model. This proposes four sub components comprising the "central executive," an executive control system of limited attentional capacity that utilises storage based on separate but interlinked…

  11. Learning, working memory, and intelligence revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamez, Elaine; Myerson, Joel; Hale, Sandra

    2008-06-01

    Based on early findings showing low correlations between intelligence test scores and learning on laboratory tasks, psychologists typically have dismissed the role of learning in intelligence and emphasized the role of working memory instead. In 2006, however, B.A. Williams developed a verbal learning task inspired by three-term reinforcement contingencies and reported unexpectedly high correlations between this task and Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices (RAPM) scores [Williams, B.A., Pearlberg, S.L., 2006. Learning of three-term contingencies correlates with Raven scores, but not with measures of cognitive processing. Intelligence 34, 177-191]. The present study replicated this finding: Performance on the three-term learning task explained almost 25% of the variance in RAPM scores. Adding complex verbal working memory span, measured using the operation span task, did not improve prediction. Notably, this was not due to a lack of correlation between complex working memory span and RAPM scores. Rather, it occurred because most of the variance captured by the complex working memory span was already accounted for by the three-term learning task. Taken together with the findings of Williams and Pearlberg, the present results make a strong case for the role of learning in performance on intelligence tests.

  12. The Distributed Nature of Working Memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Christophel, Thomas B.; Klink, P. Christiaan; Spitzer, Bernhard; Roelfsema, Pieter R.; Haynes, John-Dylan

    2017-01-01

    Studies in humans and non-human primates have provided evidence for storage of working memory contents in multiple regions ranging from sensory to parietal and prefrontal cortex. We discuss potential explanations for these distributed representations: (i) features in sensory regions versus

  13. When Higher Working Memory Capacity Hinders Insight

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeCaro, Marci S.; Van Stockum, Charles A., Jr.; Wieth, Mareike B.

    2016-01-01

    Higher working memory capacity (WMC) improves performance on a range of cognitive and academic tasks. However, a greater ability to control attention sometimes leads individuals with higher WMC to persist in using complex, attention-demanding approaches that are suboptimal for a given task. We examined whether higher WMC would hinder insight…

  14. Foreign language proficiency and working memory capacity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noort, M.W.M.L. van den; Bosch, M.P.C.; Hugdahl, K.

    2006-01-01

    In this study, the hypothesis that working memory capacity interacts with (foreign) language proficiency was tested on multilinguals, who were native (L1) Dutch speakers, were fluent in their second (L2) language, German, and had recently started the acquisition of their third (L3) language,

  15. Intelligence, Working Memory, and Multitasking Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colom, Roberto; Martinez-Molina, Agustin; Shih, Pei Chun; Santacreu, Jose

    2010-01-01

    Multitasking performance is relevant in everyday life and job analyses highlight the influence of multitasking over several diverse occupations. Intelligence is the best single predictor of overall job performance and it is also related to individual differences in multitasking. However, it has been shown that working memory capacity (WMC) is…

  16. Familiarity Enhances Visual Working Memory for Faces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Margaret C.; Raymond, Jane E.

    2008-01-01

    Although it is intuitive that familiarity with complex visual objects should aid their preservation in visual working memory (WM), empirical evidence for this is lacking. This study used a conventional change-detection procedure to assess visual WM for unfamiliar and famous faces in healthy adults. Across experiments, faces were upright or…

  17. Phonological awareness and working memory: Comparisons ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The aim of this study was to compare the working memory and phonological awareness profiles of children from diverse linguistic backgrounds, as well as to investigate the constructs that underlie these skills. A total of 119 children, all in their first year of learning to read in English, were administered phonological ...

  18. Working memory, math performance, and math anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashcraft, Mark H; Krause, Jeremy A

    2007-04-01

    The cognitive literature now shows how critically math performance depends on working memory, for any form of arithmetic and math that involves processes beyond simple memory retrieval. The psychometric literature is also very clear on the global consequences of mathematics anxiety. People who are highly math anxious avoid math: They avoid elective coursework in math, both in high school and college, they avoid college majors that emphasize math, and they avoid career paths that involve math. We go beyond these psychometric relationships to examine the cognitive consequences of math anxiety. We show how performance on a standardized math achievement test varies as a function of math anxiety, and that math anxiety compromises the functioning of working memory. High math anxiety works much like a dual task setting: Preoccupation with one's math fears and anxieties functions like a resource-demanding secondary task. We comment on developmental and educational factors related to math and working memory, and on factors that may contribute to the development of math anxiety.

  19. Joint Attention Enhances Visual Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, Samantha E. A.; Jackson, Margaret C.

    2017-01-01

    Joint attention--the mutual focus of 2 individuals on an item--speeds detection and discrimination of target information. However, what happens to that information beyond the initial perceptual episode? To fully comprehend and engage with our immediate environment also requires working memory (WM), which integrates information from second to…

  20. The accessibility of memory items in children’s working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Roome, Hannah; Towse, John

    2016-01-01

    This thesis investigates the processes and systems that support recall in working memory. In particular it seeks to apply ideas from the adult-based dual-memory framework (Unsworth & Engle, 2007b) that claims primary memory and secondary memory are independent contributors to working memory capacity. These two memory systems are described as domain-general processes that combine control of attention and basic memory abilities to retain information. The empirical contribution comprises five ex...

  1. Working Memory in the Prefrontal Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funahashi, Shintaro

    2017-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex participates in a variety of higher cognitive functions. The concept of working memory is now widely used to understand prefrontal functions. Neurophysiological studies have revealed that stimulus-selective delay-period activity is a neural correlate of the mechanism for temporarily maintaining information in working memory processes. The central executive, which is the master component of Baddeley’s working memory model and is thought to be a function of the prefrontal cortex, controls the performance of other components by allocating a limited capacity of memory resource to each component based on its demand. Recent neurophysiological studies have attempted to reveal how prefrontal neurons achieve the functions of the central executive. For example, the neural mechanisms of memory control have been examined using the interference effect in a dual-task paradigm. It has been shown that this interference effect is caused by the competitive and overloaded recruitment of overlapping neural populations in the prefrontal cortex by two concurrent tasks and that the information-processing capacity of a single neuron is limited to a fixed level, can be flexibly allocated or reallocated between two concurrent tasks based on their needs, and enhances behavioral performance when its allocation to one task is increased. Further, a metamemory task requiring spatial information has been used to understand the neural mechanism for monitoring its own operations, and it has been shown that monitoring the quality of spatial information represented by prefrontal activity is an important factor in the subject's choice and that the strength of spatially selective delay-period activity reflects confidence in decision-making. Although further studies are needed to elucidate how the prefrontal cortex controls memory resource and supervises other systems, some important mechanisms related to the central executive have been identified. PMID:28448453

  2. Consolidation and restoration of memory traces in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Schrijver, Sébastien; Barrouillet, Pierre

    2017-10-01

    Consolidation is the process through which ephemeral sensory traces are transformed into more stable short-term memory traces. It has been shown that consolidation plays a crucial role in working memory (WM) performance, by strengthening memory traces that then better resist interference and decay. In a recent study, Bayliss, Bogdanovs, and Jarrold (Journal of Memory and Language, 81, 34-50, 2015) argued that this process is separate from the processes known to restore WM traces after degradation, such as attentional refreshing and verbal rehearsal. In the present study, we investigated the relationship between the two types of processes in the context of WM span tasks. Participants were presented with series of letters for serial recall, each letter being followed by four digits for parity judgment. Consolidation opportunity was manipulated by varying the delay between each letter and the first digit to be processed, while opportunities for restoration were manipulated by varying the pace at which the parity task had to be performed (i.e., its cognitive load, or CL). Increasing the time available for either consolidation or restoration resulted in higher WM spans, with some substitutability between the two processes. Accordingly, when consolidation time was added to restoration time in the calculation of CL, the new resulting index, called extended CL, proved a very good predictor of recall performance, a finding also observed when verbal rehearsal was prevented by articulatory suppression. This substitutability between consolidation and restoration suggests that both processes may rely on the same mechanisms.

  3. A Probabilistic Model of Visual Working Memory: Incorporating Higher Order Regularities into Working Memory Capacity Estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brady, Timothy F.; Tenenbaum, Joshua B.

    2013-01-01

    When remembering a real-world scene, people encode both detailed information about specific objects and higher order information like the overall gist of the scene. However, formal models of change detection, like those used to estimate visual working memory capacity, assume observers encode only a simple memory representation that includes no…

  4. [Developmental changes in visuospatial working memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oka, Makio; Takeuchi, Akihito; Morooka, Teruko; Ogino, Tatsuya; Ohtsuka, Yoko

    2010-07-01

    We investigated the developmental changes in visuospatial working memory using the Visuospatial Span Task (VST) and the Matrix Visuospatial Working Memory Test (VSWMT). VST is a short-term storage task, while VSWMT is a complex dual task. VSWMT requires the use of storage, processing, and selective attention, all of which are thought to be supported by the central executive (Baddeley). The subjects of this study were 60 typically developing children (43 boys and 17 girls) aged 6-14 years (average 10.4 years). For each task we evaluated span scores and the number of total passed trials, and investigated the changes that occurred with age. To further elucidate age-related changes in visuospatial working memory, we divided the subjects into three age groups (Group A: 6-8 years, Group B: 9-11 years, and Group C: 12-14 years of age), and statistically evaluated the differences between the groups. In both tasks, span scores and the number of total passed trials showed definite age-related changes from 6 to 14 years of age. Span scores and the number of total passed trials in VSMWT continued to increase until adolescence, with significant differences between the three age groups, while those in VST increased significantly between Groups A and B (the number of total passed trials only) and between Groups A and C (span scores and the number of total passed trials); there was no significant difference between Groups B and C, however. These results suggest that the network of the brain involved in visuospatial working memory gradually matures during early school years and adolescence, and that the basic mechanisms of this network exist by 6-7 years of age. Our results also show that VST and VSWMT are suitable tests for the evaluation of visuospatial working memory in childhood and adolescence.

  5. Limitations of Human Visual Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Wesenick, Maria-Barbara

    2004-01-01

    The present empirical study investigates limitations of human visual working memory (VWM). The experiments of the present work involve the experimental paradigm of change detection using simple geometrical objects in the form of rectangles of different colour, length, and orientation. It can be shown, that a limited performance in the temporary storage of visual information has multiple sources. Limitations of VWM can be attributed to a limited capacity or a limited duration, but also to limi...

  6. Assessing Working Memory in Children: The Comprehensive Assessment Battery for Children – Working Memory (CABC-WM)

    OpenAIRE

    Cabbage, Kathryn; Brinkley, Shara; Gray, Shelley; Alt, Mary; Cowan, Nelson; Green, Samuel; Kuo, Trudy; Hogan, Tiffany P.

    2017-01-01

    The Comprehensive Assessment Battery for Children - Working Memory (CABC-WM) is a computer-based battery designed to assess different components of working memory in young school-age children. Working memory deficits have been identified in children with language-based learning disabilities, including dyslexia1 2 and language impairment3 4, but it is not clear whether these children exhibit deficits in subcomponents of working memory, such as visuospatial or phonological working memory. The C...

  7. Delineation of the working memory profile in female FMR1 premutation carriers: the effect of cognitive load on ocular motor responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelton, Annie L; Cornish, Kim M; Godler, David E; Clough, Meaghan; Kraan, Claudine; Bui, Minh; Fielding, Joanne

    2015-04-01

    Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) premutation carriers (PM-carriers) are characterised as having mid-sized expansions of between 55 and 200 CGG repeats in the 5' untranslated region of the FMR1 gene. While there is evidence of executive dysfunction in PM-carriers, few studies have explicitly explored working memory capabilities in female PM-carriers. 14 female PM-carriers and 13 age- and IQ-matched healthy controls completed an ocular motor n-back working memory paradigm. This task examined working memory ability and the effect of measured increases in cognitive load. Female PM-carriers were found to have attenuated working memory capabilities. Increasing the cognitive load did not elicit the expected reciprocal increase in the task errors for female PM-carriers, as it did in controls. However female PM-carriers took longer to respond than controls, regardless of the cognitive load. Further, FMR1 mRNA levels were found to significantly predict PM-carrier response time. Although preliminary, these findings provide further evidence of executive dysfunction, specifically disruption to working memory processes, which were found to be associated with increases in FMR1 mRNA expression in female PM-carriers. With future validation, ocular motor paradigms such as the n-back paradigm will be critical to the development of behavioural biomarkers for identification of PM-carrier cognitive-affective phenotypes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Liar, liar, working memory on fire: Investigating the role of working memory in childhood verbal deception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alloway, Tracy Packiam; McCallum, Fiona; Alloway, Ross G; Hoicka, Elena

    2015-09-01

    The aim of the current study was to investigate the role of working memory in verbal deception in children. We presented 6- and 7-year-olds with a temptation resistance paradigm; they played a trivia game and were then given an opportunity to peek at the final answers on the back of a card. Measures of both verbal and visuospatial working memory were included. The good liars performed better on the verbal working memory test in both processing and recall compared with the bad liars. However, there was no difference in visuospatial working scores between good liars and bad liars. This pattern suggests that verbal working memory plays a role in processing and manipulating the multiple pieces of information involved in lie-telling. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Selective attention, working memory, and animal intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matzel, Louis D; Kolata, Stefan

    2010-01-01

    Accumulating evidence indicates that the storage and processing capabilities of the human working memory system co-vary with individuals' performance on a wide range of cognitive tasks. The ubiquitous nature of this relationship suggests that variations in these processes may underlie individual differences in intelligence. Here we briefly review relevant data which supports this view. Furthermore, we emphasize an emerging literature describing a trait in genetically heterogeneous mice that is quantitatively and qualitatively analogous to general intelligence (g) in humans. As in humans, this animal analog of g co-varies with individual differences in both storage and processing components of the working memory system. Absent some of the complications associated with work with human subjects (e.g., phonological processing), this work with laboratory animals has provided an opportunity to assess otherwise intractable hypotheses. For instance, it has been possible in animals to manipulate individual aspects of the working memory system (e.g., selective attention), and to observe causal relationships between these variables and the expression of general cognitive abilities. This work with laboratory animals has coincided with human imaging studies (briefly reviewed here) which suggest that common brain structures (e.g., prefrontal cortex) mediate the efficacy of selective attention and the performance of individuals on intelligence test batteries. In total, this evidence suggests an evolutionary conservation of the processes that co-vary with and/or regulate "intelligence" and provides a framework for promoting these abilities in both young and old animals.

  10. Working memory still needs verbal rehearsal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucidi, Annalisa; Langerock, Naomi; Hoareau, Violette; Lemaire, Benoît; Camos, Valérie; Barrouillet, Pierre

    2016-02-01

    The causal role of verbal rehearsal in working memory has recently been called into question. For example, the SOB-CS (Serial Order in a Box-Complex Span) model assumes that there is no maintenance process for the strengthening of items in working memory, but instead a process of removal of distractors that are involuntarily encoded and create interference with memory items. In the present study, we tested the idea that verbal working memory performance can be accounted for without assuming a causal role of the verbal rehearsal process. We demonstrate in two experiments using a complex span task and a Brown-Peterson paradigm that increasing the number of repetitions of the same distractor (the syllable ba that was read aloud at each of its occurrences on screen) has a detrimental effect on the concurrent maintenance of consonants whereas the maintenance of spatial locations remains unaffected. A detailed analysis of the tasks demonstrates that accounting for this effect within the SOB-CS model requires a series of unwarranted assumptions leading to undesirable further predictions contradicted by available experimental evidence. We argue that the hypothesis of a maintenance mechanism based on verbal rehearsal that is impeded by concurrent articulation still provides the simplest and most compelling account of our results.

  11. Working memory retrieval as a decision process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Benjamin; Raskevicius, Julius; Bays, Paul M; Pertzov, Yoni; Husain, Masud

    2014-02-03

    Working memory (WM) is a core cognitive process fundamental to human behavior, yet the mechanisms underlying it remain highly controversial. Here we provide a new framework for understanding retrieval of information from WM, conceptualizing it as a decision based on the quality of internal evidence. Recent findings have demonstrated that precision of WM decreases with memory load. If WM retrieval uses a decision process that depends on memory quality, systematic changes in response time distribution should occur as a function of WM precision. We asked participants to view sample arrays and, after a delay, report the direction of change in location or orientation of a probe. As WM precision deteriorated with increasing memory load, retrieval time increased systematically. Crucially, the shape of reaction time distributions was consistent with a linear accumulator decision process. Varying either task relevance of items or maintenance duration influenced memory precision, with corresponding shifts in retrieval time. These results provide strong support for a decision-making account of WM retrieval based on noisy storage of items. Furthermore, they show that encoding, maintenance, and retrieval in WM need not be considered as separate processes, but may instead be conceptually unified as operations on the same noise-limited, neural representation.

  12. Does Working Memory Training Lead to Generalized Improvements in Children with Low Working Memory? A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunning, Darren L.; Holmes, Joni; Gathercole, Susan E.

    2013-01-01

    Children with low working memory typically make poor educational progress, and it has been speculated that difficulties in meeting the heavy working memory demands of the classroom may be a contributory factor. Intensive working memory training has been shown to boost performance on untrained memory tasks in a variety of populations. This first…

  13. Dynamic Connectivity between Brain Networks Supports Working Memory: Relationships to Dopamine Release and Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Snellenberg, Jared X.; Benavides, Caridad; Slifstein, Mark; Wang, Zhishun; Moore, Holly; Abi-Dargham, Anissa

    2016-01-01

    Connectivity between brain networks may adapt flexibly to cognitive demand, a process that could underlie adaptive behaviors and cognitive deficits, such as those observed in neuropsychiatric conditions like schizophrenia. Dopamine signaling is critical for working memory but its influence on internetwork connectivity is relatively unknown. We addressed these questions in healthy humans using functional magnetic resonance imaging (during an n-back working-memory task) and positron emission tomography using the radiotracer [11C]FLB457 before and after amphetamine to measure the capacity for dopamine release in extrastriatal brain regions. Brain networks were defined by spatial independent component analysis (ICA) and working-memory-load-dependent connectivity between task-relevant pairs of networks was determined via a modified psychophysiological interaction analysis. For most pairs of task-relevant networks, connectivity significantly changed as a function of working-memory load. Moreover, load-dependent changes in connectivity between left and right frontoparietal networks (Δ connectivity lFPN-rFPN) predicted interindividual differences in task performance more accurately than other fMRI and PET imaging measures. Δ Connectivity lFPN-rFPN was not related to cortical dopamine release capacity. A second study in unmedicated patients with schizophrenia showed no abnormalities in load-dependent connectivity but showed a weaker relationship between Δ connectivity lFPN-rFPN and working memory performance in patients compared with matched healthy individuals. Poor working memory performance in patients was, in contrast, related to deficient cortical dopamine release. Our findings indicate that interactions between brain networks dynamically adapt to fluctuating environmental demands. These dynamic adaptations underlie successful working memory performance in healthy individuals and are not well predicted by amphetamine-induced dopamine release capacity. SIGNIFICANCE

  14. Effects of aging on cerebral oxygenation during working-memory performance: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anouk Vermeij

    Full Text Available Working memory is sensitive to aging-related decline. Evidence exists that aging is accompanied by a reorganization of the working-memory circuitry, but the underlying neurocognitive mechanisms are unclear. In this study, we examined aging-related changes in prefrontal activation during working-memory performance using functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS, a noninvasive neuroimaging technique. Seventeen healthy young (21-32 years and 17 healthy older adults (64-81 years performed a verbal working-memory task (n-back. Oxygenated and deoxygenated hemoglobin concentration changes were registered by two fNIRS channels located over the left and right prefrontal cortex. Increased working-memory load resulted in worse performance compared to the control condition in older adults, but not in young participants. In both young and older adults, prefrontal activation increased with rising working-memory load. Young adults showed slight right-hemispheric dominance at low levels of working-memory load, while no hemispheric differences were apparent in older adults. Analysis of the time-activation curve during the high working-memory load condition revealed a continuous increase of the hemodynamic response in the young. In contrast to that, a quadratic pattern of activation was found in the older participants. Based on these results it could be hypothesized that young adults were better able to keep the prefrontal cortex recruited over a prolonged period of time. To conclude, already at low levels of working-memory load do older adults recruit both hemispheres, possibly in an attempt to compensate for the observed aging-related decline in performance. Also, our study shows that aging effects on the time course of the hemodynamic response must be taken into account in the interpretation of the results of neuroimaging studies that rely on blood oxygen levels, such as fMRI.

  15. Working memory capacity and visual-verbal cognitive load modulate auditory-sensory gating in the brainstem: toward a unified view of attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sörqvist, Patrik; Stenfelt, Stefan; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2012-11-01

    Two fundamental research questions have driven attention research in the past: One concerns whether selection of relevant information among competing, irrelevant, information takes place at an early or at a late processing stage; the other concerns whether the capacity of attention is limited by a central, domain-general pool of resources or by independent, modality-specific pools. In this article, we contribute to these debates by showing that the auditory-evoked brainstem response (an early stage of auditory processing) to task-irrelevant sound decreases as a function of central working memory load (manipulated with a visual-verbal version of the n-back task). Furthermore, individual differences in central/domain-general working memory capacity modulated the magnitude of the auditory-evoked brainstem response, but only in the high working memory load condition. The results support a unified view of attention whereby the capacity of a late/central mechanism (working memory) modulates early precortical sensory processing.

  16. Adaptive Working Memory Training Reduces the Negative Impact of Anxiety on Competitive Motor Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ducrocq, Emmanuel; Wilson, Mark; Smith, Tim J; Derakshan, Nazanin

    2017-12-01

    Optimum levels of attentional control are essential to prevent athletes from experiencing performance breakdowns under pressure. The current study explored whether training attentional control using the adaptive dual n-back paradigm, designed to directly target processing efficiency of the main executive functions of working memory (WM), would result in transferrable effects on sports performance outcomes. A total of 30 tennis players were allocated to an adaptive WM training or active control group and underwent 10 days of training. Measures of WM capacity as well as performance and objective gaze indices of attentional control in a tennis volley task were assessed in low- and high-pressure posttraining conditions. Results revealed significant benefits of training on WM capacity, quiet eye offset, and tennis performance in the high-pressure condition. Our results confirm and extend previous findings supporting the transfer of cognitive training benefits to objective measures of sports performance under pressure.

  17. Test-retest reliability of fMRI-based graph theoretical properties during working memory, emotion processing, and resting state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Hengyi; Plichta, Michael M; Schäfer, Axel; Haddad, Leila; Grimm, Oliver; Schneider, Michael; Esslinger, Christine; Kirsch, Peter; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Tost, Heike

    2014-01-01

    The investigation of the brain connectome with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and graph theory analyses has recently gained much popularity, but little is known about the robustness of these properties, in particular those derived from active fMRI tasks. Here, we studied the test-retest reliability of brain graphs calculated from 26 healthy participants with three established fMRI experiments (n-back working memory, emotional face-matching, resting state) and two parcellation schemes for node definition (AAL atlas, functional atlas proposed by Power et al.). We compared the intra-class correlation coefficients (ICCs) of five different data processing strategies and demonstrated a superior reliability of task-regression methods with condition-specific regressors. The between-task comparison revealed significantly higher ICCs for resting state relative to the active tasks, and a superiority of the n-back task relative to the face-matching task for global and local network properties. While the mean ICCs were typically lower for the active tasks, overall fair to good reliabilities were detected for global and local connectivity properties, and for the n-back task with both atlases, smallworldness. For all three tasks and atlases, low mean ICCs were seen for the local network properties. However, node-specific good reliabilities were detected for node degree in regions known to be critical for the challenged functions (resting-state: default-mode network nodes, n-back: fronto-parietal nodes, face-matching: limbic nodes). Between-atlas comparison demonstrated significantly higher reliabilities for the functional parcellations for global and local network properties. Our findings can inform the choice of processing strategies, brain atlases and outcome properties for fMRI studies using active tasks, graph theory methods, and within-subject designs, in particular future pharmaco-fMRI studies. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Long-term and within-day variability of working memory performance and EEG in individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gevins, Alan; McEvoy, Linda K; Smith, Michael E; Chan, Cynthia S; Sam-Vargas, Lita; Baum, Cliff; Ilan, Aaron B

    2012-07-01

    Assess individual-subject long-term and within-day variability of a combined behavioral and EEG test of working memory. EEGs were recorded from 16 adults performing n-back working memory tasks, with 10 tested in morning and afternoon sessions over several years. Participants were also tested after ingesting non-prescription medications or recreational substances. Performance and EEG measures were analyzed to derive an Overall score and three constituent sub-scores characterizing changes in performance, cortical activation, and alertness from each individual's baseline. Long-term and within-day variability were determined for each score; medication effects were assessed by reference to each individual's normal day-to-day variability. Over the several year period, the mean Overall score and sub-scores were approximately zero with standard deviations less than one. Overall scores were lower and their variability higher in afternoon relative to morning sessions. At the group level, alcohol, diphenhydramine and marijuana produced significant effects, but there were large individual differences. Objective working memory measures incorporating performance and EEG are stable over time and sensitive at the level of individual subjects to interventions that affect neurocognitive function. With further research these measures may be suitable for use in individualized medical care by providing a sensitive assessment of incipient illness and response to treatment. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  19. Neural Correlates Associated with Successful Working Memory Performance in Older Adults as Revealed by Spatial ICA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saliasi, Emi; Geerligs, Linda; Lorist, Monicque M.; Maurits, Natasha M.

    2014-01-01

    To investigate which neural correlates are associated with successful working memory performance, fMRI was recorded in healthy younger and older adults during performance on an n-back task with varying task demands. To identify functional networks supporting working memory processes, we used independent component analysis (ICA) decomposition of the fMRI data. Compared to younger adults, older adults showed a larger neural (BOLD) response in the more complex (2-back) than in the baseline (0-back) task condition, in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) and in the right fronto-parietal network (FPN). Our results indicated that a higher BOLD response in the VLPFC was associated with increased performance accuracy in older adults, in both the baseline and the more complex task condition. This ‘BOLD-performance’ relationship suggests that the neural correlates linked with successful performance in the older adults are not uniquely related to specific working memory processes present in the complex but not in the baseline task condition. Furthermore, the selective presence of this relationship in older but not in younger adults suggests that increased neural activity in the VLPFC serves a compensatory role in the aging brain which benefits task performance in the elderly. PMID:24911016

  20. Working memory capacity and the spacing effect in cued recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delaney, Peter F; Godbole, Namrata R; Holden, Latasha R; Chang, Yoojin

    2018-07-01

    Spacing repetitions typically improves memory (the spacing effect). In three cued recall experiments, we explored the relationship between working memory capacity and the spacing effect. People with higher working memory capacity are more accurate on memory tasks that require retrieval relative to people with lower working memory capacity. The experiments used different retention intervals and lags between repetitions, but were otherwise similar. Working memory capacity and spacing of repetitions both improved memory in most of conditions, but they did not interact, suggesting additive effects. The results are consistent with the ACT-R model's predictions, and with a study-phase recognition process underpinning the spacing effect in cued recall.

  1. Working, declarative and procedural memory in specific language impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lum, Jarrad A.G.; Conti-Ramsden, Gina; Page, Debra; Ullman, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    According to the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH), abnormalities of brain structures underlying procedural memory largely explain the language deficits in children with specific language impairment (SLI). These abnormalities are posited to result in core deficits of procedural memory, which in turn explain the grammar problems in the disorder. The abnormalities are also likely to lead to problems with other, non-procedural functions, such as working memory, that rely at least partly on the affected brain structures. In contrast, declarative memory is expected to remain largely intact, and should play an important compensatory role for grammar. These claims were tested by examining measures of working, declarative and procedural memory in 51 children with SLI and 51 matched typically-developing (TD) children (mean age 10). Working memory was assessed with the Working Memory Test Battery for Children, declarative memory with the Children’s Memory Scale, and procedural memory with a visuo-spatial Serial Reaction Time task. As compared to the TD children, the children with SLI were impaired at procedural memory, even when holding working memory constant. In contrast, they were spared at declarative memory for visual information, and at declarative memory in the verbal domain after controlling for working memory and language. Visuo-spatial short-term memory was intact, whereas verbal working memory was impaired, even when language deficits were held constant. Correlation analyses showed neither visuo-spatial nor verbal working memory was associated with either lexical or grammatical abilities in either the SLI or TD children. Declarative memory correlated with lexical abilities in both groups of children. Finally, grammatical abilities were associated with procedural memory in the TD children, but with declarative memory in the children with SLI. These findings replicate and extend previous studies of working, declarative and procedural memory in SLI. Overall, we

  2. Short-term and working memory impairments in aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potagas, Constantin; Kasselimis, Dimitrios; Evdokimidis, Ioannis

    2011-08-01

    The aim of the present study is to investigate short-term memory and working memory deficits in aphasics in relation to the severity of their language impairment. Fifty-eight aphasic patients participated in this study. Based on language assessment, an aphasia score was calculated for each patient. Memory was assessed in two modalities, verbal and spatial. Mean scores for all memory tasks were lower than normal. Aphasia score was significantly correlated with performance on all memory tasks. Correlation coefficients for short-term memory and working memory were approximately of the same magnitude. According to our findings, severity of aphasia is related with both verbal and spatial memory deficits. Moreover, while aphasia score correlated with lower scores in both short-term memory and working memory tasks, the lack of substantial difference between corresponding correlation coefficients suggests a possible primary deficit in information retention rather than impairment in working memory. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Working Memory Load and Reminder Effect on Event-Based Prospective Memory of High- and Low-Achieving Students in Math.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Youzhen; Lian, Rong; Yang, Lixian; Liu, Jianrong; Meng, Yingfang

    The effects of working memory (WM) demand and reminders on an event-based prospective memory (PM) task were compared between students with low and high achievement in math. WM load (1- and 2-back tasks) was manipulated as a within-subject factor and reminder (with or without reminder) as a between-subject factor. Results showed that high-achieving students outperformed low-achieving students on all PM and n-back tasks. Use of a reminder improved PM performance and thus reduced prospective interference; the performance of ongoing tasks also improved for all students. Both PM and n-back performances in low WM load were better than in high WM load. High WM load had more influence on low-achieving students than on high-achieving students. Results suggest that low-achieving students in math were weak at PM and influenced more by high WM load. Thus, it is important to train these students to set up an obvious reminder for their PM and improve their WM.

  4. Assessing Working Memory in Children: The Comprehensive Assessment Battery for Children - Working Memory (CABC-WM).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabbage, Kathryn; Brinkley, Shara; Gray, Shelley; Alt, Mary; Cowan, Nelson; Green, Samuel; Kuo, Trudy; Hogan, Tiffany P

    2017-06-12

    The Comprehensive Assessment Battery for Children - Working Memory (CABC-WM) is a computer-based battery designed to assess different components of working memory in young school-age children. Working memory deficits have been identified in children with language-based learning disabilities, including dyslexia 1 , 2 and language impairment 3 , 4 , but it is not clear whether these children exhibit deficits in subcomponents of working memory, such as visuospatial or phonological working memory. The CABC-WM is administered on a desktop computer with a touchscreen interface and was specifically developed to be engaging and motivating for children. Although the long-term goal of the CABC-WM is to provide individualized working memory profiles in children, the present study focuses on the initial success and utility of the CABC-WM for measuring central executive, visuospatial, phonological loop, and binding constructs in children with typical development. Immediate next steps are to administer the CABC-WM to children with specific language impairment, dyslexia, and comorbid specific language impairment and dyslexia.

  5. Resource allocation models of auditory working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph, Sabine; Teki, Sundeep; Kumar, Sukhbinder; Husain, Masud; Griffiths, Timothy D

    2016-06-01

    Auditory working memory (WM) is the cognitive faculty that allows us to actively hold and manipulate sounds in mind over short periods of time. We develop here a particular perspective on WM for non-verbal, auditory objects as well as for time based on the consideration of possible parallels to visual WM. In vision, there has been a vigorous debate on whether WM capacity is limited to a fixed number of items or whether it represents a limited resource that can be allocated flexibly across items. Resource allocation models predict that the precision with which an item is represented decreases as a function of total number of items maintained in WM because a limited resource is shared among stored objects. We consider here auditory work on sequentially presented objects of different pitch as well as time intervals from the perspective of dynamic resource allocation. We consider whether the working memory resource might be determined by perceptual features such as pitch or timbre, or bound objects comprising multiple features, and we speculate on brain substrates for these behavioural models. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. The Auditory-Visual Speech Benefit on Working Memory in Older Adults with Hearing Impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frtusova, Jana B; Phillips, Natalie A

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the effect of auditory-visual (AV) speech stimuli on working memory in older adults with poorer-hearing (PH) in comparison to age- and education-matched older adults with better hearing (BH). Participants completed a working memory n-back task (0- to 2-back) in which sequences of digits were presented in visual-only (i.e., speech-reading), auditory-only (A-only), and AV conditions. Auditory event-related potentials (ERP) were collected to assess the relationship between perceptual and working memory processing. The behavioral results showed that both groups were faster in the AV condition in comparison to the unisensory conditions. The ERP data showed perceptual facilitation in the AV condition, in the form of reduced amplitudes and latencies of the auditory N1 and/or P1 components, in the PH group. Furthermore, a working memory ERP component, the P3, peaked earlier for both groups in the AV condition compared to the A-only condition. In general, the PH group showed a more robust AV benefit; however, the BH group showed a dose-response relationship between perceptual facilitation and working memory improvement, especially for facilitation of processing speed. Two measures, reaction time and P3 amplitude, suggested that the presence of visual speech cues may have helped the PH group to counteract the demanding auditory processing, to the level that no group differences were evident during the AV modality despite lower performance during the A-only condition. Overall, this study provides support for the theory of an integrated perceptual-cognitive system. The practical significance of these findings is also discussed.

  7. DRD2/CHRNA5 interaction on prefrontal biology and physiology during working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annabella Di Giorgio

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Prefrontal behavior and activity in humans are heritable. Studies in animals demonstrate an interaction between dopamine D2 receptors and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on prefrontal behavior but evidence in humans is weak. Therefore, we hypothesize that genetic variation regulating dopamine D2 and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor signaling impact prefrontal cortex activity and related cognition. To test this hypothesis in humans, we explored the interaction between functional genetic variants in the D2 receptor gene (DRD2, rs1076560 and in the nicotinic receptor α5 gene (CHRNA5, rs16969968 on both dorsolateral prefrontal cortex mediated behavior and physiology during working memory and on prefrontal gray matter volume. METHODS: A large sample of healthy subjects was compared for genotypic differences for DRD2 rs1076560 (G>T and CHNRA5 rs16969968 (G>A on prefrontal phenotypes, including cognitive performance at the N-Back task, prefrontal physiology with BOLD fMRI during performance of the 2-Back working memory task, and prefrontal morphometry with structural MRI. RESULTS: We found that DRD2 rs1076560 and CHNRA5 rs16969968 interact to modulate cognitive function, prefrontal physiology during working memory, and prefrontal gray matter volume. More specifically, CHRNA5-AA/DRD2-GT subjects had greater behavioral performance, more efficient prefrontal cortex activity at 2Back working memory task, and greater prefrontal gray matter volume than the other genotype groups. CONCLUSIONS: The present data extend previous studies in animals and enhance our understanding of dopamine and acetylcholine signaling in the human prefrontal cortex, demonstrating interactions elicited by working memory that are modulated by genetic variants in DRD2 and CHRNA5.

  8. DRD2/CHRNA5 interaction on prefrontal biology and physiology during working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Giorgio, Annabella; Smith, Ryan M; Fazio, Leonardo; D'Ambrosio, Enrico; Gelao, Barbara; Tomasicchio, Aldo; Selvaggi, Pierluigi; Taurisano, Paolo; Quarto, Tiziana; Masellis, Rita; Rampino, Antonio; Caforio, Grazia; Popolizio, Teresa; Blasi, Giuseppe; Sadee, Wolfgang; Bertolino, Alessandro

    2014-01-01

    Prefrontal behavior and activity in humans are heritable. Studies in animals demonstrate an interaction between dopamine D2 receptors and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on prefrontal behavior but evidence in humans is weak. Therefore, we hypothesize that genetic variation regulating dopamine D2 and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor signaling impact prefrontal cortex activity and related cognition. To test this hypothesis in humans, we explored the interaction between functional genetic variants in the D2 receptor gene (DRD2, rs1076560) and in the nicotinic receptor α5 gene (CHRNA5, rs16969968) on both dorsolateral prefrontal cortex mediated behavior and physiology during working memory and on prefrontal gray matter volume. A large sample of healthy subjects was compared for genotypic differences for DRD2 rs1076560 (G>T) and CHNRA5 rs16969968 (G>A) on prefrontal phenotypes, including cognitive performance at the N-Back task, prefrontal physiology with BOLD fMRI during performance of the 2-Back working memory task, and prefrontal morphometry with structural MRI. We found that DRD2 rs1076560 and CHNRA5 rs16969968 interact to modulate cognitive function, prefrontal physiology during working memory, and prefrontal gray matter volume. More specifically, CHRNA5-AA/DRD2-GT subjects had greater behavioral performance, more efficient prefrontal cortex activity at 2Back working memory task, and greater prefrontal gray matter volume than the other genotype groups. The present data extend previous studies in animals and enhance our understanding of dopamine and acetylcholine signaling in the human prefrontal cortex, demonstrating interactions elicited by working memory that are modulated by genetic variants in DRD2 and CHRNA5.

  9. Neurophysiological capacity in a working memory task differentiates dependent from nondependent heavy drinkers and controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wesley, Michael J; Lile, Joshua A; Fillmore, Mark T; Porrino, Linda J

    2017-06-01

    Determining the neurobehavioral profiles that differentiate heavy drinkers who are and are not alcohol dependent will inform treatment efforts. Working memory is linked to substance use disorders and can serve as a representation of the demand placed on the neurophysiology associated with cognitive control. Behavior and brain activity (via fMRI) were recorded during an N-Back working memory task in controls (CTRL), nondependent heavy drinkers (A-ND) and dependent heavy drinkers (A-D). Typical and novel step-wise analyses examined profiles of working memory load and increasing task demand, respectively. Performance was significantly decreased in A-D during high working memory load (2-Back), compared to CTRL and A-ND. Analysis of brain activity during high load (0-Back vs. 2- Back) showed greater responses in the dorsal lateral and medial prefrontal cortices of A-D than CTRL, suggesting increased but failed compensation. The step-wise analysis revealed that the transition to Low Demand (0-Back to 1-Back) was associated with robust increases and decreases in cognitive control and default-mode brain regions, respectively, in A-D and A-ND but not CTRL. The transition to High Demand (1-Back to 2-Back) resulted in additional engagement of these networks in A-ND and CTRL, but not A-D. Heavy drinkers engaged working memory neural networks at lower demand than controls. As demand increased, nondependent heavy drinkers maintained control performance but relied on additional neurophysiological resources, and dependent heavy drinkers did not display further resource engagement and had poorer performance. These results support targeting these brain areas for treatment interventions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. The Auditory-Visual Speech Benefit on Working Memory in Older Adults with Hearing Impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jana B. Frtusova

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This study examined the effect of auditory-visual (AV speech stimuli on working memory in hearing impaired participants (HIP in comparison to age- and education-matched normal elderly controls (NEC. Participants completed a working memory n-back task (0- to 2-back in which sequences of digits were presented in visual-only (i.e., speech-reading, auditory-only (A-only, and AV conditions. Auditory event-related potentials (ERP were collected to assess the relationship between perceptual and working memory processing. The behavioural results showed that both groups were faster in the AV condition in comparison to the unisensory conditions. The ERP data showed perceptual facilitation in the AV condition, in the form of reduced amplitudes and latencies of the auditory N1 and/or P1 components, in the HIP group. Furthermore, a working memory ERP component, the P3, peaked earlier for both groups in the AV condition compared to the A-only condition. In general, the HIP group showed a more robust AV benefit; however, the NECs showed a dose-response relationship between perceptual facilitation and working memory improvement, especially for facilitation of processing speed. Two measures, reaction time and P3 amplitude, suggested that the presence of visual speech cues may have helped the HIP to counteract the demanding auditory processing, to the level that no group differences were evident during the AV modality despite lower performance during the A-only condition. Overall, this study provides support for the theory of an integrated perceptual-cognitive system. The practical significance of these findings is also discussed.

  11. Stress Effects on Working Memory, Explicit Memory, and Implicit Memory for Neutral and Emotional Stimuli in Healthy Men

    OpenAIRE

    Luethi, Mathias; Meier, Beat; Sandi, Carmen

    2009-01-01

    Stress is a strong modulator of memory function. However, memory is not a unitary process and stress seems to exert different effects depending on the memory type under study. Here, we explored the impact of social stress on different aspects of human memory, including tests for explicit memory and working memory (for neutral materials), as well as implicit memory (perceptual priming, contextual priming and classical conditioning for emotional stimuli). A total of 35 young adult...

  12. Emotion processing facilitates working memory performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindström, Björn R; Bohlin, Gunilla

    2011-11-01

    The effect of emotional stimulus content on working memory performance has been investigated with conflicting results, as both emotion-dependent facilitation and impairments are reported in the literature. To clarify this issue, 52 adult participants performed a modified visual 2-back task with highly arousing positive stimuli (sexual scenes), highly arousing negative stimuli (violent death) and low-arousal neutral stimuli. Emotional stimulus processing was found to facilitate task performance relative to that of neutral stimuli, both in regards to response accuracy and reaction times. No emotion-dependent differences in false-alarm rates were found. These results indicate that emotional information can have a facilitating effect on working memory maintenance and processing of information.

  13. A Working Memory Test Battery: Java-Based Collection of Seven Working Memory Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James M Stone

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Working memory is a key construct within cognitive science. It is an important theory in its own right, but the influence of working memory is enriched due to the widespread evidence that measures of its capacity are linked to a variety of functions in wider cognition. To facilitate the active research environment into this topic, we describe seven computer-based tasks that provide estimates of short-term and working memory incorporating both visuospatial and verbal material. The memory span tasks provided are; digit span, matrix span, arrow span, reading span, operation span, rotation span, and symmetry span. These tasks are built to be simple to use, flexible to adapt to the specific needs of the research design, and are open source. All files can be downloaded from the project website http://www.cognitivetools.uk and the source code is available via Github.

  14. The hippocampus, time and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlins, J N; Tsaltas, E

    1983-12-01

    Rats were trained on a discrete trial working memory leverpress alternation task, following hippocampal lesions (HC), cortical control lesions (CC) or sham operations (SO). Each trial consisted of a forced information response, for which a randomly selected lever was presented followed by a free choice stage, when both levers were presented. The rats were rewarded for pressing the lever which had not been presented at the information stage. When the information response was not rewarded, all rats learnt the task equally well at IRIs of up to 12.75 sec. When the information response was rewarded, the HC rats showed impaired choice accuracy. The extent of this impairment depended on the IRI, being greatest at long IRIs, and least at short ones. Varying the number of leverpresses required to complete the information response affected choice accuracy equivalently in all groups: all rats chose significantly less accurately when only one leverpress was required than when ten leverpresses were required. There was no interaction between the lesion treatments and the information response requirements. It was concluded that both the length of the IRI and the occurrence of events during the IRI determine the extent of the hippocampal lesion-induced performance deficit in working memory tasks. It is proposed that hippocampal damage disrupts an intermediate-term, high-capacity memory buffer, but leaves both a residual short-term memory system and the long-term retention of associations unaffected. This proposal leads to the prediction that reference memory tasks should also be affected by hippocampal lesions when a delay is introduced between making a response and being rewarded for doing so.

  15. Is the Link from Working Memory to Analogy Causal? No Analogy Improvements following Working Memory Training Gains

    OpenAIRE

    Richey, J. Elizabeth; Phillips, Jeffrey S.; Schunn, Christian D.; Schneider, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data [1], but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation [2]. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working mem...

  16. Verbal declarative memory impairments in specific language impairment are related to working memory deficits

    OpenAIRE

    Lum, Jarrad A.G.; Ullman, Michael T.; Conti-Ramsden, Gina

    2015-01-01

    This study examined verbal declarative memory functioning in SLI and its relationship to working memory. Encoding, recall, and recognition of verbal information was examined in children with SLI who had below average working memory (SLILow WM), children with SLI who had average working memory (SLIAvg. WM) and, a group of non-language impaired children with average working memory (TDAvg. WM). The SLILow WM group was significantly worse than both the SLIAvg. WM and TDAvg. WM groups at encoding ...

  17. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT Genotype Affects Age-Related Changes in Plasticity in Working Memory: A Pilot Study

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    Stephan Heinzel

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objectives. Recent work suggests that a genetic variation associated with increased dopamine metabolism in the prefrontal cortex (catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met; COMT amplifies age-related changes in working memory performance. Research on younger adults indicates that the influence of dopamine-related genetic polymorphisms on working memory performance increases when testing the cognitive limits through training. To date, this has not been studied in older adults. Method. Here we investigate the effect of COMT genotype on plasticity in working memory in a sample of 14 younger (aged 24–30 years and 25 older (aged 60–75 years healthy adults. Participants underwent adaptive training in the n-back working memory task over 12 sessions under increasing difficulty conditions. Results. Both younger and older adults exhibited sizeable behavioral plasticity through training (P<.001, which was larger in younger as compared to older adults (P<.001. Age-related differences were qualified by an interaction with COMT genotype (P<.001, and this interaction was due to decreased behavioral plasticity in older adults carrying the Val/Val genotype, while there was no effect of genotype in younger adults. Discussion. Our findings indicate that age-related changes in plasticity in working memory are critically affected by genetic variation in prefrontal dopamine metabolism.

  18. Working memory and language: an overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan

    2003-01-01

    Working memory involves the temporary storage and manipulation of information that is assumed to be necessary for a wide range of complex cognitive activities. In 1974, Baddeley and Hitch proposed that it could be divided into three subsystems, one concerned with verbal and acoustic information, the phonological loop, a second, the visuospatial sketchpad providing its visual equivalent, while both are dependent upon a third attentionally-limited control system, the central executive. A fourth subsystem, the episodic buffer, has recently been proposed. These are described in turn, with particular reference to implications for both the normal processing of language, and its potential disorders. The reader will be introduced to the concept of a multi-component working memory. Particular emphasis will be placed on the phonological loop component, and (a) its fractionation into a storage and processing component, (b) the neuropsychological evidence for this distinction, and (c) its implication for both native and second language learning. This will be followed by (d) a brief overview of the visuospatial sketchpad and its possible role in language, culminating in (e) discussion of the higher-level control functions of working memory which include (f) the central executive and its multi-dimensional storage system, the episodic buffer. An attempt throughout is made to link the model to its role in both normal and disordered language functions.

  19. Working memory capacity as a dynamic process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa R Simmering

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A well-known characteristic of working memory is its limited capacity. The source of such limitations, however, is a continued point of debate. Developmental research is positioned to address this debate by jointly identifying the source(s of limitations and the mechanism(s underlying capacity increases. Here we provide a cross-domain survey of studies and theories of working memory capacity development, which reveals a complex picture: dozens of studies from 50 papers show nearly universal increases in capacity estimates with age, but marked variation across studies, tasks, and domains. We argue that the full pattern of performance cannot be captured through traditional approaches emphasizing single causes, or even multiple separable causes, underlying capacity development. Rather, we consider working memory capacity as a dynamic process that emerges from a unified cognitive system flexibly adapting to the context and demands of each task. We conclude by enumerating specific challenges for researchers and theorists that will need to be met in order to move our understanding forward.

  20. Working memory predicts children's analogical reasoning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simms, Nina K; Frausel, Rebecca R; Richland, Lindsey E

    2018-02-01

    Analogical reasoning is the cognitive skill of drawing relationships between representations, often between prior knowledge and new representations, that allows for bootstrapping cognitive and language development. Analogical reasoning proficiency develops substantially during childhood, although the mechanisms underlying this development have been debated, with developing cognitive resources as one proposed mechanism. We explored the role of executive function (EF) in supporting children's analogical reasoning development, with the goal of determining whether predicted aspects of EF were related to analogical development at the level of individual differences. We assessed 5- to 11-year-old children's working memory, inhibitory control, and cognitive flexibility using measures from the National Institutes of Health Toolbox Cognition battery. Individual differences in children's working memory best predicted performance on an analogical mapping task, even when controlling for age, suggesting a fundamental interrelationship between analogical reasoning and working memory development. These findings underscore the need to consider cognitive capacities in comprehensive theories of children's reasoning development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Training working memory updating in young adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linares, Rocío; Borella, Erika; Lechuga, M Teresa; Carretti, Barbara; Pelegrina, Santiago

    2018-05-01

    Working memory updating (WMU) is a core mechanism in the human mental architecture and a good predictor of a wide range of cognitive processes. This study analyzed the benefits of two different WMU training procedures, near transfer effects on a working memory measure, and far transfer effects on nonverbal reasoning. Maintenance of any benefits a month later was also assessed. Participants were randomly assigned to: an adaptive training group that performed two numerical WMU tasks during four sessions; a non-adaptive training group that performed the same tasks but on a constant and less demanding level of difficulty; or an active control group that performed other tasks unrelated with working memory. After the training, all three groups showed improvements in most of the tasks, and these benefits were maintained a month later. The gain in one of the two WMU measures was larger for the adaptive and non-adaptive groups than for the control group. This specific gain in a task similar to the one trained would indicate the use of a better strategy for performing the task. Besides this nearest transfer effect, no other transfer effects were found. The adaptability of the training procedure did not produce greater improvements. These results are discussed in terms of the training procedure and the feasibility of training WMU.

  2. Supramodal parametric working memory processing in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spitzer, Bernhard; Blankenburg, Felix

    2012-03-07

    Previous studies of delayed-match-to-sample (DMTS) frequency discrimination in animals and humans have succeeded in delineating the neural signature of frequency processing in somatosensory working memory (WM). During retention of vibrotactile frequencies, stimulus-dependent single-cell and population activity in prefrontal cortex was found to reflect the task-relevant memory content, whereas increases in occipital alpha activity signaled the disengagement of areas not relevant for the tactile task. Here, we recorded EEG from human participants to determine the extent to which these mechanisms can be generalized to frequency retention in the visual and auditory domains. Subjects performed analogous variants of a DMTS frequency discrimination task, with the frequency information presented either visually, auditorily, or by vibrotactile stimulation. Examining oscillatory EEG activity during frequency retention, we found characteristic topographical distributions of alpha power over visual, auditory, and somatosensory cortices, indicating systematic patterns of inhibition and engagement of early sensory areas, depending on stimulus modality. The task-relevant frequency information, in contrast, was found to be represented in right prefrontal cortex, independent of presentation mode. In each of the three modality conditions, parametric modulations of prefrontal upper beta activity (20-30 Hz) emerged, in a very similar manner as recently found in vibrotactile tasks. Together, the findings corroborate a view of parametric WM as supramodal internal scaling of abstract quantity information and suggest strong relevance of previous evidence from vibrotactile work for a more general framework of quantity processing in human working memory.

  3. Postural responses to specific types of working memory tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ramenzoni, V.C.; Riley, M.A.; Shockley, K.; Chiu, C.Y.P.

    2007-01-01

    Standing participants performed working memory tasks that varied along three dimensions: (1) type of information presented (verbal or visual); (2) the primary cognitive process engaged (encoding or rehearsal); and (3) interference that targeted the working memory components (phonological loop and

  4. Right prefrontal activity reflects the ability to overcome sleepiness during working memory tasks: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.

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    Motoyasu Honma

    Full Text Available It has been speculated that humans have an inherent ability to overcome sleepiness that counteracts homeostatic sleep pressure. However, it remains unclear which cortical substrate activities are involved in the ability to overcome sleepiness during the execution of cognitive tasks. Here we sought to confirm that this ability to overcome sleepiness in task execution improves performance on cognitive tasks, showing activation of neural substrates in the frontal cortex, by using a modified n-back (2- and 0-back working memory task and functional near-infrared spectroscopy. The change in alertness was just correlated with performances on the 2-back task. Activity in the right prefrontal cortex changed depending on alertness changes on the 2- and 0-back tasks independently, which indicates that activity in this region clearly reflects the ability to overcome sleepiness; it may contribute to the function of providing sufficient activity to meet the task load demands. This study reveals characteristics of the ability to overcome sleepiness during the n-back working memory task which goes beyond the attention-control function traditionally proposed.

  5. DRD2 genotype predicts prefrontal activity during working memory after stimulation of D2 receptors with bromocriptine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelao, Barbara; Fazio, Leonardo; Selvaggi, Pierluigi; Di Giorgio, Annabella; Taurisano, Paolo; Quarto, Tiziana; Romano, Raffaella; Porcelli, Annamaria; Mancini, Marina; Masellis, Rita; Ursini, Gianluca; De Simeis, Giuseppe; Caforio, Grazia; Ferranti, Laura; Lo Bianco, Luciana; Rampino, Antonio; Todarello, Orlando; Popolizio, Teresa; Blasi, Giuseppe; Bertolino, Alessandro

    2014-06-01

    Pharmacological stimulation of D2 receptors modulates prefrontal neural activity associated with working memory (WM) processing. The T allele of a functional single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) within DRD2 (rs1076560 G > T) predicts reduced relative expression of the D2S receptor isoform and less efficient neural cortical responses during WM tasks. We used functional MRI to test the hypothesis that DRD2 rs1076560 genotype interacts with pharmacological stimulation of D2 receptors with bromocriptine on prefrontal responses during different loads of a spatial WM task (N-Back). Fifty-three healthy subjects (38 GG and 15 GT) underwent two 3-T functional MRI scans while performing the 1-, 2- and 3-Back versions of the N-Back WM task. Before the imaging sessions, either bromocriptine or placebo was administered to all subjects in a counterbalanced order. A factorial repeated-measures ANOVA within SPM8 (p < 0.05, family-wise error corrected) was used. On bromocriptine, GG subjects had reduced prefrontal activity at 3-Back together with a significant decrement in performance, compared with placebo. On the other hand, GT subjects had lower activity for the same level of performance at 1-Back but a trend for reduced behavioral performance in the face of unchanged activity at 2-Back. These results indicate that bromocriptine stimulation modulates prefrontal activity in terms of disengagement or of efficiency depending on DRD2 genotype and working memory load.

  6. THE COGNITIVE NEUROSCIENCE OF WORKING MEMORY

    Science.gov (United States)

    D’Esposito, Mark; Postle, Bradley R.

    2015-01-01

    For over 50 years, psychologists and neuroscientists have recognized the importance of a “working memory” to coordinate processing when multiple goals are active, and to guide behavior with information that is not present in the immediate environment. In recent years, psychological theory and cognitive neuroscience data have converged on the idea that information is encoded into working memory via the allocation of attention to internal representations – be they semantic long-term memory (e.g., letters, digits, words), sensory, or motoric. Thus, information-based multivariate analyses of human functional MRI data typically find evidence for the temporary representation of stimuli in regions that also process this information in nonworking-memory contexts. The prefrontal cortex, on the other hand, exerts control over behavior by biasing the salience of mnemonic representations, and adjudicating among competing, context-dependent rules. The “control of the controller” emerges from a complex interplay between PFC and striatal circuits, and ascending dopaminergic neuromodulatory signals. PMID:25251486

  7. Working memory load modulates microsaccadic rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalmaso, Mario; Castelli, Luigi; Scatturin, Pietro; Galfano, Giovanni

    2017-03-01

    Microsaccades are tiny eye movements that individuals perform unconsciously during fixation. Despite that the nature and the functions of microsaccades are still lively debated, recent evidence has shown an association between these micro eye movements and higher order cognitive processes. Here, in two experiments, we specifically focused on working memory and addressed whether differential memory load could be reflected in a modulation of microsaccade dynamics. In Experiment 1, participants memorized a numerical sequence composed of either two (low-load condition) or five digits (high-load condition), appearing at fixation. The results showed a reduction in the microsaccadic rate in the high-load compared to the low-load condition. In Experiment 2, five red or green digits were always presented at fixation. Participants either memorized the color (low-load condition) or the five digits (high-load condition). Hence, visual stimuli were exactly the same in both conditions. Consistent with Experiment 1, microsaccadic rate was lower in the high-load than in the low-load condition. Overall, these findings reveal that an engagement of working memory can have an impact on microsaccadic rate, consistent with the view that microsaccade generation is pervious to top-down processes.

  8. Phonological similarity in working memory span tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chow, Michael; Macnamara, Brooke N; Conway, Andrew R A

    2016-08-01

    In a series of four experiments, we explored what conditions are sufficient to produce a phonological similarity facilitation effect in working memory span tasks. By using the same set of memoranda, but differing the secondary-task requirements across experiments, we showed that a phonological similarity facilitation effect is dependent upon the semantic relationship between the memoranda and the secondary-task stimuli, and is robust to changes in the representation, ordering, and pool size of the secondary-task stimuli. These findings are consistent with interference accounts of memory (Brown, Neath, & Chater, Psychological Review, 114, 539-576, 2007; Oberauer, Lewandowsky, Farrell, Jarrold, & Greaves, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 19, 779-819, 2012), whereby rhyming stimuli provide a form of categorical similarity that allows distractors to be excluded from retrieval at recall.

  9. Working memory, long-term memory and language processing : issues and future directions

    OpenAIRE

    Collette, Fabienne; Van der Linden, Martial; Poncelet, Martine

    2000-01-01

    We examined different views of the relationships between working memory, long-term memory and language processing : working memory considered as a gateway between sensory input and long-term memory or rather as a workspace; working memory considered as not strictly tied to any particular cognitive system (and consequently viewed as separated from the language system) or rather as drawing on the operation and storage capacities of a subset of components involved in language processing. It is a...

  10. Teachers' Perceptions of Classroom Behaviour and Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alloway, Tracy Packiam

    2012-01-01

    Working memory, ability to remember and manipulate information, is crucial to academic attainment. The aim of the present study was to understand teachers' perception of working memory and how it impacts classroom behaviour. A semi-structured interview was used to explore teachers' ability to define working memory, identify these difficulties in…

  11. Spatial working memory maintenance: does attention play a role?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chan, L.K.; Hayward, W.G.; Theeuwes, J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent studies have proposed that a common mechanism may underlie spatial attention and spatial working memory. One proposal is that spatial working memory is maintained by attention-based rehearsal [Awh, E., Jonides, J., & Reuter-Lorenz, P. A. (1998). Rehearsal in spatial working memory. Journal of

  12. Predictors of Verbal Working Memory in Children with Cerebral Palsy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peeters, Marieke; Verhoeven, Ludo; de Moor, Jan

    2009-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to examine the precursors of verbal working memory in 52 children with cerebral palsy with varying degrees of speech impairments in the first grade of special education. Following Baddeley's model of working memory, children's verbal working memory was measured by means of a forced-recognition task. As precursors…

  13. Predictors of verbal working memory in children with cerebral palsy.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peeters, M.; Verhoeven, L.; Moor, J.M.H. de

    2009-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to examine the precursors of verbal working memory in 52 children with cerebral palsy with varying degrees of speech impairments in the first grade of special education. Following Baddeley's model of working memory, children's verbal working memory was measured by

  14. Reflections on Working Memory: Are the Two Models Complementary?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pascual-Leone, Juan

    2000-01-01

    Compares and contrasts working memory theory of Baddeley and theory of constructive operators of Pascual- Leone. Concludes that although the theory of constructive operators is complementary with working memory theory (explains developmental and individual differences that working memory theory cannot), the converse is not true; theory of…

  15. Predictors of verbal working memory in children with cerebral palsy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peeters, M.H.J.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.; Moor, J.M.H. de

    2009-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to examine the precursors of verbal working memory in 52 children with cerebral palsy with varying degrees of speech impairments in the first grade of special education. Following Baddeley's model of working memory, children's verbal working memory was measured by

  16. Verbal Working Memory in Children with Mild Intellectual Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Molen, M. J.; Van Luit, J. E. H.; Jongmans, M. J.; Van der Molen, M. W.

    2007-01-01

    Background: Previous research into working memory of individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) has established clear deficits. The current study examined working memory in children with mild ID (IQ 55-85) within the framework of the Baddeley model, fractionating working memory into a central executive and two slave systems, the phonological…

  17. Differential Age Effects on Spatial and Visual Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oosterman, Joukje M.; Morel, Sascha; Meijer, Lisette; Buvens, Cleo; Kessels, Roy P. C.; Postma, Albert

    2011-01-01

    The present study was intended to compare age effects on visual and spatial working memory by using two versions of the same task that differed only in presentation mode. The working memory task contained both a simultaneous and a sequential presentation mode condition, reflecting, respectively, visual and spatial working memory processes. Young…

  18. Working Memory Interventions with Children: Classrooms or Computers?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colmar, Susan; Double, Kit

    2017-01-01

    The importance of working memory to classroom functioning and academic outcomes has led to the development of many interventions designed to enhance students' working memory. In this article we briefly review the evidence for the relative effectiveness of classroom and computerised working memory interventions in bringing about measurable and…

  19. Working Memory and Learning: A Practical Guide for Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gathercole, Susan E.; Alloway, Tracy Packiam

    2008-01-01

    A good working memory is crucial to becoming a successful leaner, yet there is very little material available in an easy-to-use format that explains the concept and offers practitioners ways to support children with poor working memory in the classroom. This book provides a coherent overview of the role played by working memory in learning during…

  20. Pitch Perception, Working Memory, and Second-Language Phonological Production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Posedel, James; Emery, Lisa; Souza, Benjamin; Fountain, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Previous research has suggested that training on a musical instrument is associated with improvements in working memory and musical pitch perception ability. Good working memory and musical pitch perception ability, in turn, have been linked to certain aspects of language production. The current study examines whether working memory and/or pitch…

  1. Distinction between perceptual and attentional processing in working memory tasks: a study of phase-locked and induced oscillatory brain dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deiber, Marie-Pierre; Missonnier, Pascal; Bertrand, Olivier; Gold, Gabriel; Fazio-Costa, Lara; Ibañez, Vicente; Giannakopoulos, Panteleimon

    2007-01-01

    Working memory involves the short-term storage and manipulation of information necessary for cognitive performance, including comprehension, learning, reasoning and planning. Although electroencephalogram (EEG) rhythms are modulated during working memory, the temporal relationship of EEG oscillations with the eliciting event has not been well studied. In particular, the dynamics of the neural network supporting memory processes may be best captured in induced oscillations, characterized by a loose temporal link with the stimulus. In order to differentiate induced from evoked functional processes, the present study proposes a time-frequency analysis of the 3 to 30 Hz EEG oscillatory activity in a verbal n-back working memory paradigm. Control tasks were designed to identify oscillatory activity related to stimulus presentation (passive task) and focused attention to the stimulus (detection task). Evoked theta activity (4-8 Hz) phase-locked to the visual stimulus was evidenced in the parieto-occipital region for all tasks. In parallel, induced theta activity was recorded in the frontal region for detection and n-back memory tasks, but not for the passive task, suggesting its dependency on focused attention to the stimulus. Sustained induced oscillatory activity was identified in relation to working memory in the theta and beta (15-25 Hz) frequency bands, larger for the highest memory load. Its late occurrence limited to nonmatched items suggests that it could be related to item retention and active maintenance for further task requirements. Induced theta and beta activities displayed respectively a frontal and parietal topographical distribution, providing further functional information on the fronto-posterior network supporting working memory.

  2. Localized Fluctuant Oscillatory Activity by Working Memory Load: A Simultaneous EEG-fMRI Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaojie Zhao

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Working memory (WM is a resource-limited memory system for temporary storage and processing of brain information during the execution of cognitive tasks. Increased WM load will increase the amount and difficulty of memory information. Several studies have used electroencephalography (EEG or functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to explore load-dependent cognition processing according to the time courses of electrophysiological activity or the spatial pattern of blood oxygen metabolic activity. However, the relationships between these two activities and the underlying neural mechanism are still unclear. In this study, using simultaneously collected EEG and fMRI data under an n-back verbal WM task, we modeled the spectral perturbation of EEG oscillation and fMRI activation through joint independent component analysis (JICA. Multi-channel oscillation features were also introduced into the JICA model for further analysis. The results showed that time-locked activity of theta and beta were modulated by memory load in the early stimuli evaluation stage, corresponding to the enhanced activation in the frontal and parietal lobe, which were involved in stimulus discrimination, information encoding and delay-period activity. In the late response selection stage, alpha and gamma activity changes dependent on the load correspond to enhanced activation in the areas of frontal, temporal and parietal lobes, which played important roles in attention, information extraction and memory retention. These findings suggest that the increases in memory load not only affect the intensity and time course of the EEG activities, but also lead to the enhanced activation of brain regions which plays different roles during different time periods of cognitive process of WM.

  3. Localized Fluctuant Oscillatory Activity by Working Memory Load: A Simultaneous EEG-fMRI Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xiaojie; Li, Xiaoyun; Yao, Li

    2017-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is a resource-limited memory system for temporary storage and processing of brain information during the execution of cognitive tasks. Increased WM load will increase the amount and difficulty of memory information. Several studies have used electroencephalography (EEG) or functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to explore load-dependent cognition processing according to the time courses of electrophysiological activity or the spatial pattern of blood oxygen metabolic activity. However, the relationships between these two activities and the underlying neural mechanism are still unclear. In this study, using simultaneously collected EEG and fMRI data under an n-back verbal WM task, we modeled the spectral perturbation of EEG oscillation and fMRI activation through joint independent component analysis (JICA). Multi-channel oscillation features were also introduced into the JICA model for further analysis. The results showed that time-locked activity of theta and beta were modulated by memory load in the early stimuli evaluation stage, corresponding to the enhanced activation in the frontal and parietal lobe, which were involved in stimulus discrimination, information encoding and delay-period activity. In the late response selection stage, alpha and gamma activity changes dependent on the load correspond to enhanced activation in the areas of frontal, temporal and parietal lobes, which played important roles in attention, information extraction and memory retention. These findings suggest that the increases in memory load not only affect the intensity and time course of the EEG activities, but also lead to the enhanced activation of brain regions which plays different roles during different time periods of cognitive process of WM.

  4. Dissociation of Procedural and Working Memory in Pigeons (Columba livia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walter T. Herbranson

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available A new method was developed to concurrently investigate procedural memory and working memory in pigeons. Pigeons performed a sequence of keypecks across 3 response keys in a serial response task, with periodic choice probes for the location of a recently produced response. Procedural memory was operationally defined as decreasing response times to predictable cues in the sequence. Working memory was reflected by accurate responses to the choice probes. Changing the sequence of required keypecks to a random sequence interfered with procedural memory in the form of slowed response times, but did not prevent pigeons from effectively using working memory to remember specific cue locations. Conversely, changing exposure duration of to a cue location influenced working memory but had no effect on procedural memory. Double dissociations such as this have supported the multiple systems approach to the study of memory in cognitive psychology and neuroscience, and they encourage a similar approach in comparative psychology.

  5. Value conditioning modulates visual working memory processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Paul M J; FitzGibbon, Lily; Raymond, Jane E

    2016-01-01

    Learning allows the value of motivationally salient events to become associated with stimuli that predict those events. Here, we asked whether value associations could facilitate visual working memory (WM), and whether such effects would be valence dependent. Our experiment was specifically designed to isolate value-based effects on WM from value-based effects on selective attention that might be expected to bias encoding. In a simple associative learning task, participants learned to associate the color of tinted faces with gaining or losing money or neither. Tinted faces then served as memoranda in a face identity WM task for which previously learned color associations were irrelevant and no monetary outcomes were forthcoming. Memory was best for faces with gain-associated tints, poorest for faces with loss-associated tints, and average for faces with no-outcome-associated tints. Value associated with 1 item in the WM array did not modulate memory for other items in the array. Eye movements when studying faces did not depend on the valence of previously learned color associations, arguing against value-based biases being due to differential encoding. This valence-sensitive value-conditioning effect on WM appears to result from modulation of WM maintenance processes. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  6. Working memory overload: fronto-limbic interactions and effects on subsequent working memory function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, Richard J; Krystal, John H; Mathalon, Daniel H

    2010-03-01

    The human working memory system provides an experimentally useful model for examination of neural overload effects on subsequent functioning of the overloaded system. This study employed functional magnetic resonance imaging in conjunction with a parametric working memory task to characterize the behavioral and neural effects of cognitive overload on subsequent cognitive performance, with particular attention to cognitive-limbic interactions. Overloading the working memory system was associated with varying degrees of subsequent decline in performance accuracy and reduced activation of brain regions central to both task performance and suppression of negative affect. The degree of performance decline was independently predicted by three separate factors operating during the overload condition: the degree of task failure, the degree of amygdala activation, and the degree of inverse coupling between the amygdala and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. These findings suggest that vulnerability to overload effects in cognitive functioning may be mediated by reduced amygdala suppression and subsequent amygdala-prefrontal interaction.

  7. Working memory: theories, models, and controversies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddeley, Alan

    2012-01-01

    I present an account of the origins and development of the multicomponent approach to working memory, making a distinction between the overall theoretical framework, which has remained relatively stable, and the attempts to build more specific models within this framework. I follow this with a brief discussion of alternative models and their relationship to the framework. I conclude with speculations on further developments and a comment on the value of attempting to apply models and theories beyond the laboratory studies on which they are typically based.

  8. Happiness increases verbal and spatial working memory capacity where sadness does not: Emotion, working memory and executive control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storbeck, Justin; Maswood, Raeya

    2016-08-01

    The effects of emotion on working memory and executive control are often studied in isolation. Positive mood enhances verbal and impairs spatial working memory, whereas negative mood enhances spatial and impairs verbal working memory. Moreover, positive mood enhances executive control, whereas negative mood has little influence. We examined how emotion influences verbal and spatial working memory capacity, which requires executive control to coordinate between holding information in working memory and completing a secondary task. We predicted that positive mood would improve both verbal and spatial working memory capacity because of its influence on executive control. Positive, negative and neutral moods were induced followed by completing a verbal (Experiment 1) or spatial (Experiment 2) working memory operation span task to assess working memory capacity. Positive mood enhanced working memory capacity irrespective of the working memory domain, whereas negative mood had no influence on performance. Thus, positive mood was more successful holding information in working memory while processing task-irrelevant information, suggesting that the influence mood has on executive control supersedes the independent effects mood has on domain-specific working memory.

  9. Coaching positively influences the effects of working memory training on visual working memory as well as mathematical ability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nelwan, M.; Vissers, C.T.W.M.; Kroesbergen, E.H.

    2018-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to test whether the amount of coaching influenced the results of working memory training on both visual and verbal working memory. Additionally, the effects of the working memory training on the amount of progress after specific training in mathematics were

  10. Neural correlates of the difference between working memory speed and simple sensorimotor speed: an fMRI study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hikaru Takeuchi

    Full Text Available The difference between the speed of simple cognitive processes and the speed of complex cognitive processes has various psychological correlates. However, the neural correlates of this difference have not yet been investigated. In this study, we focused on working memory (WM for typical complex cognitive processes. Functional magnetic resonance imaging data were acquired during the performance of an N-back task, which is a measure of WM for typical complex cognitive processes. In our N-back task, task speed and memory load were varied to identify the neural correlates responsible for the difference between the speed of simple cognitive processes (estimated from the 0-back task and the speed of WM. Our findings showed that this difference was characterized by the increased activation in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC and the increased functional interaction between the right DLPFC and right superior parietal lobe. Furthermore, the local gray matter volume of the right DLPFC was correlated with participants' accuracy during fast WM tasks, which in turn correlated with a psychometric measure of participants' intelligence. Our findings indicate that the right DLPFC and its related network are responsible for the execution of the fast cognitive processes involved in WM. Identified neural bases may underlie the psychometric differences between the speed with which subjects perform simple cognitive tasks and the speed with which subjects perform more complex cognitive tasks, and explain the previous traditional psychological findings.

  11. Memory – what is it and how it works?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanja Šešok

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: Memory system presents a basis for many cognitive functions and at the same time it itself depends on their normal function. The purpose of the article is to show how it works as an array of interacting systems, each capable of registring information, storing it, and making available by retrieval. In the case of the psychological study of memory, the most common model used for understanding memory functions is the time based model, which presume that memory can be divided into sensory memory, short-term or working memory and long-term memory. Memory is a process and the information processing approach to memory suggests that there are five processes involved in any type of memory: attention, encoding, storage, consolidation and retrieval. Several most common explanations of forgetting are described.

  12. The Effect of Rehearsal Rate and Memory Load on Verbal Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Fegen, David; Buchsbaum, Bradley R.; D’Esposito, Mark

    2014-01-01

    While many neuroimaging studies have investigated verbal working memory (WM) by manipulating memory load, the subvocal rehearsal rate at these various memory loads has generally been left uncontrolled. Therefore, the goal of this study was to investigate how mnemonic load and the rate of subvocal rehearsal modulate patterns of activity in the core neural circuits underlying verbal working memory. Using fMRI in healthy subjects, we orthogonally manipulated subvocal rehearsal rate and memory lo...

  13. Dynamic visual noise interferes with storage in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean, Graham M; Dewhurst, Stephen A; Whittaker, Annalise

    2008-01-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that dynamic visual noise (DVN) does not interfere with memory for random matrices. This has led to suggestions that (a) visual working memory is distinct from imagery, and (b) visual working memory is not a gateway between sensory input and long-term storage. A comparison of the interference effects of DVN with memory for matrices and colored textures shows that DVN can interfere with visual working memory, probably at a level of visual detail not easily supported by long-term memory structures or the recoding of the visual pattern elements. The results support a gateway model of visuospatial working memory and raise questions about the most appropriate ways to measure and model the different levels of representation of information that can be held in visual working memory.

  14. Working Memory From the Psychological and Neurosciences Perspectives: A Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Wen Jia; Abd Hamid, Aini Ismafairus; Abdullah, Jafri Malin

    2018-01-01

    Since the concept of working memory was introduced over 50 years ago, different schools of thought have offered different definitions for working memory based on the various cognitive domains that it encompasses. The general consensus regarding working memory supports the idea that working memory is extensively involved in goal-directed behaviors in which information must be retained and manipulated to ensure successful task execution. Before the emergence of other competing models, the concept of working memory was described by the multicomponent working memory model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch. In the present article, the authors provide an overview of several working memory-relevant studies in order to harmonize the findings of working memory from the neurosciences and psychological standpoints, especially after citing evidence from past studies of healthy, aging, diseased, and/or lesioned brains. In particular, the theoretical framework behind working memory, in which the related domains that are considered to play a part in different frameworks (such as memory's capacity limit and temporary storage) are presented and discussed. From the neuroscience perspective, it has been established that working memory activates the fronto-parietal brain regions, including the prefrontal, cingulate, and parietal cortices. Recent studies have subsequently implicated the roles of subcortical regions (such as the midbrain and cerebellum) in working memory. Aging also appears to have modulatory effects on working memory; age interactions with emotion, caffeine and hormones appear to affect working memory performances at the neurobiological level. Moreover, working memory deficits are apparent in older individuals, who are susceptible to cognitive deterioration. Another younger population with working memory impairment consists of those with mental, developmental, and/or neurological disorders such as major depressive disorder and others. A less coherent and organized neural

  15. A continuous time-resolved measure decoded from EEG oscillatory activity predicts working memory task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astrand, Elaine

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Working memory (WM), crucial for successful behavioral performance in most of our everyday activities, holds a central role in goal-directed behavior. As task demands increase, inducing higher WM load, maintaining successful behavioral performance requires the brain to work at the higher end of its capacity. Because it is depending on both external and internal factors, individual WM load likely varies in a continuous fashion. The feasibility to extract such a continuous measure in time that correlates to behavioral performance during a working memory task remains unsolved. Approach. Multivariate pattern decoding was used to test whether a decoder constructed from two discrete levels of WM load can generalize to produce a continuous measure that predicts task performance. Specifically, a linear regression with L2-regularization was chosen with input features from EEG oscillatory activity recorded from healthy participants while performing the n-back task, n\\in [1,2] . Main results. The feasibility to extract a continuous time-resolved measure that correlates positively to trial-by-trial working memory task performance is demonstrated (r  =  0.47, p  <  0.05). It is furthermore shown that this measure allows to predict task performance before action (r  =  0.49, p  <  0.05). We show that the extracted continuous measure enables to study the temporal dynamics of the complex activation pattern of WM encoding during the n-back task. Specifically, temporally precise contributions of different spectral features are observed which extends previous findings of traditional univariate approaches. Significance. These results constitute an important contribution towards a wide range of applications in the field of cognitive brain–machine interfaces. Monitoring mental processes related to attention and WM load to reduce the risk of committing errors in high-risk environments could potentially prevent many devastating consequences or

  16. Working, declarative and procedural memory in specific language impairment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lum, J. A. G.; Conti-Ramsden, G.; Page, D.

    2012-01-01

    at declarative memory for visual information, and at declarative memory in the verbal domain after controlling for working memory and language. Visuo-spatial short-term memory was intact, whereas verbal working memory was impaired, even when language deficits were held constant. Correlation analyses showed......According to the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH), abnormalities of brain structures underlying procedural memory largely explain the language deficits in children with specific language impairment (SLI). These abnormalities are posited to result in core deficits of procedural memory, which...... in turn explain the grammar problems in the disorder. The abnormalities are also likely to lead to problems with other, non-procedural functions, such as working memory, that rely at least partly on the affected brain structures. In contrast, declarative memory is expected to remain largely intact...

  17. Working Memory Load Strengthens Reward Prediction Errors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Anne G E; Ciullo, Brittany; Frank, Michael J; Badre, David

    2017-04-19

    Reinforcement learning (RL) in simple instrumental tasks is usually modeled as a monolithic process in which reward prediction errors (RPEs) are used to update expected values of choice options. This modeling ignores the different contributions of different memory and decision-making systems thought to contribute even to simple learning. In an fMRI experiment, we investigated how working memory (WM) and incremental RL processes interact to guide human learning. WM load was manipulated by varying the number of stimuli to be learned across blocks. Behavioral results and computational modeling confirmed that learning was best explained as a mixture of two mechanisms: a fast, capacity-limited, and delay-sensitive WM process together with slower RL. Model-based analysis of fMRI data showed that striatum and lateral prefrontal cortex were sensitive to RPE, as shown previously, but, critically, these signals were reduced when the learning problem was within capacity of WM. The degree of this neural interaction related to individual differences in the use of WM to guide behavioral learning. These results indicate that the two systems do not process information independently, but rather interact during learning. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Reinforcement learning (RL) theory has been remarkably productive at improving our understanding of instrumental learning as well as dopaminergic and striatal network function across many mammalian species. However, this neural network is only one contributor to human learning and other mechanisms such as prefrontal cortex working memory also play a key role. Our results also show that these other players interact with the dopaminergic RL system, interfering with its key computation of reward prediction errors. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/374332-11$15.00/0.

  18. Rethinking the Connection between Working Memory and Language Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, Lisa M. D.; Harder Griebeling, Katherine

    2016-01-01

    Background: Working memory deficits have been found for children with specific language impairment (SLI) on tasks imposing increasing short-term memory load with or without additional, consistent (and simple) processing load. Aims: To examine the processing function of working memory in children with low language (LL) by employing tasks imposing…

  19. Training Planning and Working Memory in Third Graders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldin, Andrea Paula; Segretin, Maria Soledad; Hermida, Maria Julia; Paz, Luciano; Lipina, Sebastian Javier; Sigman, Mariano

    2013-01-01

    Working memory and planning are fundamental cognitive skills supporting fluid reasoning. We show that 2 games that train working memory and planning skills in school-aged children promote transfer to 2 different tasks: an attentional test and a fluid reasoning test. We also show long-term improvement of planning and memory capacities in…

  20. Working Memory, Long-Term Memory, and Medial Temporal Lobe Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeneson, Annette; Squire, Larry R.

    2012-01-01

    Early studies of memory-impaired patients with medial temporal lobe (MTL) damage led to the view that the hippocampus and related MTL structures are involved in the formation of long-term memory and that immediate memory and working memory are independent of these structures. This traditional idea has recently been revisited. Impaired performance…

  1. Working Memory From the Psychological and Neurosciences Perspectives: A Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Wen Jia; Abd Hamid, Aini Ismafairus; Abdullah, Jafri Malin

    2018-01-01

    Since the concept of working memory was introduced over 50 years ago, different schools of thought have offered different definitions for working memory based on the various cognitive domains that it encompasses. The general consensus regarding working memory supports the idea that working memory is extensively involved in goal-directed behaviors in which information must be retained and manipulated to ensure successful task execution. Before the emergence of other competing models, the concept of working memory was described by the multicomponent working memory model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch. In the present article, the authors provide an overview of several working memory-relevant studies in order to harmonize the findings of working memory from the neurosciences and psychological standpoints, especially after citing evidence from past studies of healthy, aging, diseased, and/or lesioned brains. In particular, the theoretical framework behind working memory, in which the related domains that are considered to play a part in different frameworks (such as memory’s capacity limit and temporary storage) are presented and discussed. From the neuroscience perspective, it has been established that working memory activates the fronto-parietal brain regions, including the prefrontal, cingulate, and parietal cortices. Recent studies have subsequently implicated the roles of subcortical regions (such as the midbrain and cerebellum) in working memory. Aging also appears to have modulatory effects on working memory; age interactions with emotion, caffeine and hormones appear to affect working memory performances at the neurobiological level. Moreover, working memory deficits are apparent in older individuals, who are susceptible to cognitive deterioration. Another younger population with working memory impairment consists of those with mental, developmental, and/or neurological disorders such as major depressive disorder and others. A less coherent and organized

  2. Working Memory From the Psychological and Neurosciences Perspectives: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen Jia Chai

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Since the concept of working memory was introduced over 50 years ago, different schools of thought have offered different definitions for working memory based on the various cognitive domains that it encompasses. The general consensus regarding working memory supports the idea that working memory is extensively involved in goal-directed behaviors in which information must be retained and manipulated to ensure successful task execution. Before the emergence of other competing models, the concept of working memory was described by the multicomponent working memory model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch. In the present article, the authors provide an overview of several working memory-relevant studies in order to harmonize the findings of working memory from the neurosciences and psychological standpoints, especially after citing evidence from past studies of healthy, aging, diseased, and/or lesioned brains. In particular, the theoretical framework behind working memory, in which the related domains that are considered to play a part in different frameworks (such as memory’s capacity limit and temporary storage are presented and discussed. From the neuroscience perspective, it has been established that working memory activates the fronto-parietal brain regions, including the prefrontal, cingulate, and parietal cortices. Recent studies have subsequently implicated the roles of subcortical regions (such as the midbrain and cerebellum in working memory. Aging also appears to have modulatory effects on working memory; age interactions with emotion, caffeine and hormones appear to affect working memory performances at the neurobiological level. Moreover, working memory deficits are apparent in older individuals, who are susceptible to cognitive deterioration. Another younger population with working memory impairment consists of those with mental, developmental, and/or neurological disorders such as major depressive disorder and others. A less coherent

  3. The circadian regulation of sleep: impact of a functional ADA-polymorphism and its association to working memory improvements.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolin F Reichert

    Full Text Available Sleep is regulated in a time-of-day dependent manner and profits working memory. However, the impact of the circadian timing system as well as contributions of specific sleep properties to this beneficial effect remains largely unexplored. Moreover, it is unclear to which extent inter-individual differences in sleep-wake regulation depend on circadian phase and modulate the association between sleep and working memory. Here, sleep electroencephalography (EEG was recorded during a 40-h multiple nap protocol, and working memory performance was assessed by the n-back task 10 times before and after each scheduled nap sleep episode. Twenty-four participants were genotyped regarding a functional polymorphism in adenosine deaminase (rs73598374, 12 G/A-, 12 G/G-allele carriers, previously associated with differences in sleep-wake regulation. Our results indicate that genotype-driven differences in sleep depend on circadian phase: heterozygous participants were awake longer and slept less at the end of the biological day, while they exhibited longer non rapid eye movement (NREM sleep and slow wave sleep concomitant with reduced power between 8-16 Hz at the end of the biological night. Slow wave sleep and NREM sleep delta EEG activity covaried positively with overall working memory performance, independent of circadian phase and genotype. Moreover, REM sleep duration benefitted working memory particularly when occurring in the early morning hours and specifically in heterozygous individuals. Even though based on a small sample size and thus requiring replication, our results suggest genotype-dependent differences in circadian sleep regulation. They further indicate that REM sleep, being under strong circadian control, boosts working memory performance according to genotype in a time-of-day dependent manner. Finally, our data provide first evidence that slow wave sleep and NREM sleep delta activity, majorly regulated by sleep homeostatic mechanisms, is

  4. Working Memory, Reasoning, and Task Switching Training: Transfer Effects, Limitations, and Great Expectations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baniqued, Pauline L; Allen, Courtney M; Kranz, Michael B; Johnson, Kathryn; Sipolins, Aldis; Dickens, Charles; Ward, Nathan; Geyer, Alexandra; Kramer, Arthur F

    2015-01-01

    Although some studies have shown that cognitive training can produce improvements to untrained cognitive domains (far transfer), many others fail to show these effects, especially when it comes to improving fluid intelligence. The current study was designed to overcome several limitations of previous training studies by incorporating training expectancy assessments, an active control group, and "Mind Frontiers," a video game-based mobile program comprised of six adaptive, cognitively demanding training tasks that have been found to lead to increased scores in fluid intelligence (Gf) tests. We hypothesize that such integrated training may lead to broad improvements in cognitive abilities by targeting aspects of working memory, executive function, reasoning, and problem solving. Ninety participants completed 20 hour-and-a-half long training sessions over four to five weeks, 45 of whom played Mind Frontiers and 45 of whom completed visual search and change detection tasks (active control). After training, the Mind Frontiers group improved in working memory n-back tests, a composite measure of perceptual speed, and a composite measure of reaction time in reasoning tests. No training-related improvements were found in reasoning accuracy or other working memory tests, nor in composite measures of episodic memory, selective attention, divided attention, and multi-tasking. Perceived self-improvement in the tested abilities did not differ between groups. A general expectancy difference in problem-solving was observed between groups, but this perceived benefit did not correlate with training-related improvement. In summary, although these findings provide modest evidence regarding the efficacy of an integrated cognitive training program, more research is needed to determine the utility of Mind Frontiers as a cognitive training tool.

  5. Working Memory, Reasoning, and Task Switching Training: Transfer Effects, Limitations, and Great Expectations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baniqued, Pauline L.; Ward, Nathan; Geyer, Alexandra; Kramer, Arthur F.

    2015-01-01

    Although some studies have shown that cognitive training can produce improvements to untrained cognitive domains (far transfer), many others fail to show these effects, especially when it comes to improving fluid intelligence. The current study was designed to overcome several limitations of previous training studies by incorporating training expectancy assessments, an active control group, and “Mind Frontiers,” a video game-based mobile program comprised of six adaptive, cognitively demanding training tasks that have been found to lead to increased scores in fluid intelligence (Gf) tests. We hypothesize that such integrated training may lead to broad improvements in cognitive abilities by targeting aspects of working memory, executive function, reasoning, and problem solving. Ninety participants completed 20 hour-and-a-half long training sessions over four to five weeks, 45 of whom played Mind Frontiers and 45 of whom completed visual search and change detection tasks (active control). After training, the Mind Frontiers group improved in working memory n-back tests, a composite measure of perceptual speed, and a composite measure of reaction time in reasoning tests. No training-related improvements were found in reasoning accuracy or other working memory tests, nor in composite measures of episodic memory, selective attention, divided attention, and multi-tasking. Perceived self-improvement in the tested abilities did not differ between groups. A general expectancy difference in problem-solving was observed between groups, but this perceived benefit did not correlate with training-related improvement. In summary, although these findings provide modest evidence regarding the efficacy of an integrated cognitive training program, more research is needed to determine the utility of Mind Frontiers as a cognitive training tool. PMID:26555341

  6. Working Memory, Reasoning, and Task Switching Training: Transfer Effects, Limitations, and Great Expectations?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauline L Baniqued

    Full Text Available Although some studies have shown that cognitive training can produce improvements to untrained cognitive domains (far transfer, many others fail to show these effects, especially when it comes to improving fluid intelligence. The current study was designed to overcome several limitations of previous training studies by incorporating training expectancy assessments, an active control group, and "Mind Frontiers," a video game-based mobile program comprised of six adaptive, cognitively demanding training tasks that have been found to lead to increased scores in fluid intelligence (Gf tests. We hypothesize that such integrated training may lead to broad improvements in cognitive abilities by targeting aspects of working memory, executive function, reasoning, and problem solving. Ninety participants completed 20 hour-and-a-half long training sessions over four to five weeks, 45 of whom played Mind Frontiers and 45 of whom completed visual search and change detection tasks (active control. After training, the Mind Frontiers group improved in working memory n-back tests, a composite measure of perceptual speed, and a composite measure of reaction time in reasoning tests. No training-related improvements were found in reasoning accuracy or other working memory tests, nor in composite measures of episodic memory, selective attention, divided attention, and multi-tasking. Perceived self-improvement in the tested abilities did not differ between groups. A general expectancy difference in problem-solving was observed between groups, but this perceived benefit did not correlate with training-related improvement. In summary, although these findings provide modest evidence regarding the efficacy of an integrated cognitive training program, more research is needed to determine the utility of Mind Frontiers as a cognitive training tool.

  7. The Development of Attention Systems and Working Memory in Infancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Greg D; Romano, Alexandra C

    2016-01-01

    In this article, we review research and theory on the development of attention and working memory in infancy using a developmental cognitive neuroscience framework. We begin with a review of studies examining the influence of attention on neural and behavioral correlates of an earlier developing and closely related form of memory (i.e., recognition memory). Findings from studies measuring attention utilizing looking measures, heart rate, and event-related potentials (ERPs) indicate significant developmental change in sustained and selective attention across the infancy period. For example, infants show gains in the magnitude of the attention related response and spend a greater proportion of time engaged in attention with increasing age (Richards and Turner, 2001). Throughout infancy, attention has a significant impact on infant performance on a variety of tasks tapping into recognition memory; however, this approach to examining the influence of infant attention on memory performance has yet to be utilized in research on working memory. In the second half of the article, we review research on working memory in infancy focusing on studies that provide insight into the developmental timing of significant gains in working memory as well as research and theory related to neural systems potentially involved in working memory in early development. We also examine issues related to measuring and distinguishing between working memory and recognition memory in infancy. To conclude, we discuss relations between the development of attention systems and working memory.

  8. The Development of Working Memory: Further Note on the Comparability of Two Models of Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Ribaupierre, Anik; Bailleux, Christine

    2000-01-01

    Summarizes similarities and differences between the working memory models of Pascual-Leone and Baddeley. Debates whether each model makes a specific contribution to explanation of Kemps, De Rammelaere, and Desmet's results. Argues for necessity of theoretical task analyses. Compares a study similar to that of Kemps et al. in which different…

  9. Asymmetric cross-domain interference between two working memory tasks : Implications for models of working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Morey, Candice C.; Morey, Richard D.; van der Reijden, Madeleine; Holweg, Margot

    2013-01-01

    Observations of higher dual-task costs for within-domain than cross-domain task combinations constitute classic evidence for multi-component models of working memory (e.g., Baddeley, 1986; Logie, 2011). However, we report an asymmetric pattern of interference between verbal and visual-spatial tasks,

  10. Working memory contents revive the neglected, but suppress the inhibited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Suk Won

    2015-12-01

    It is well known that attention is biased toward a stimulus matching working memory contents. However, it remains unknown whether the maintenance of information in working memory by itself is sufficient to create memory-driven attentional capture. Notably, in many previous studies showing the memory-driven attentional capture, the task settings might have explicitly or implicitly incentivized participants to strategically attend to a memory-matching stimulus. By innovating an experimental paradigm, the present study overcame this challenge and directly tested whether working memory contents capture attention in the absence of task-level attentional bias toward a memory-matching stimulus. I found that a stimulus that is usually outside the focus of attention, powerfully captured attention when it matched working memory contents, whereas a match between working memory and an inhibited stimulus suppressed attentional allocation toward the memory-matching stimulus. These findings suggest that in the absence of any task-level attentional bias toward memory-matching stimuli, attention is biased toward a memory-matching stimulus, but this memory-driven attentional capture is diminished when top-down inhibition is imposed on the stimulus. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Working memory limitations in children with severe language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Daal, John; Verhoeven, Ludo; van Leeuwe, Jan; van Balkom, Hans

    2008-01-01

    In the present study, the relations of various aspects of working memory to various aspects of language problems in a clinical sample of 97 Dutch speaking 5-year-old children with severe language problems were studied. The working memory and language abilities of the children were examined using an extensive battery of tests. Working memory was operationalized according to the model of Baddeley. Confirmative factor analyses revealed three memory factors: phonological, visual and central executive. Language was construed as a multifactorial construct, and confirmative factor analyses revealed four factors: lexical-semantic abilities, phonological abilities, syntactic abilities and speech production abilities. Moderate to high correlations were found between the memory and language factors. Structural equation modelling was used to further explore the relations between the different factors. Phonological memory was found to predict phonological abilities; central-executive memory predicted lexical-semantic abilities; and visual memory predicted speech production abilities. Phonological abilities also predicted syntactic abilities. Both the theoretical and clinical implications of the findings are discussed. The reader will be introduced to the concepts of multifactorial components of working memory as well as language impairment. Secondly the reader will recognize that working memory and language impairment factors can be related. Particular emphasis will be placed on phonological memory, central-executive memory and visual memory and their possible prediction of specific components of language impairment.

  12. Efficiency of working memory: Theoretical concept and practical application

    OpenAIRE

    Lalović Dejan

    2008-01-01

    Efficiency of working memory is the concept which connects psychology of memory with different fields of cognitive, differential and applied psychology. In this paper, the history of interest for the assessment of the capacity of short-term memory is presented in brief, as well as the different methods used nowadays to assess the individual differences in the efficiency of working memory. What follows is the consideration of studies that indicate the existence of significant links between the...

  13. Working memory, phonological awareness, and developing language skills

    OpenAIRE

    Engel de Abreu, Pascale; Gathercole, S

    2008-01-01

    The relationship between working memory, verbal short-term memory, phonological awareness, and developing language skills was explored longitudinally in children growing up in a multilingual society. A sample of 121 children from Luxembourg were followed from the end of Kindergarten to 1st Grade, and completed multiple assessments of verbal short-term memory, complex working memory, phonological awareness, native and foreign vocabulary knowledge, language comprehension, and reading. Resu...

  14. Manipulations of attention dissociate fragile visual short-term memory from visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandenbroucke, Annelinde R E; Sligte, Ilja G; Lamme, Victor A F

    2011-05-01

    People often rely on information that is no longer in view, but maintained in visual short-term memory (VSTM). Traditionally, VSTM is thought to operate on either a short time-scale with high capacity - iconic memory - or a long time scale with small capacity - visual working memory. Recent research suggests that in addition, an intermediate stage of memory in between iconic memory and visual working memory exists. This intermediate stage has a large capacity and a lifetime of several seconds, but is easily overwritten by new stimulation. We therefore termed it fragile VSTM. In previous studies, fragile VSTM has been dissociated from iconic memory by the characteristics of the memory trace. In the present study, we dissociated fragile VSTM from visual working memory by showing a differentiation in their dependency on attention. A decrease in attention during presentation of the stimulus array greatly reduced the capacity of visual working memory, while this had only a small effect on the capacity of fragile VSTM. We conclude that fragile VSTM is a separate memory store from visual working memory. Thus, a tripartite division of VSTM appears to be in place, comprising iconic memory, fragile VSTM and visual working memory. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Working memory and intelligibility of hearing-aid processed speech

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Pamela E.; Arehart, Kathryn H.; Shen, Jing; Anderson, Melinda; Kates, James M.

    2015-01-01

    Previous work suggested that individuals with low working memory capacity may be at a disadvantage in adverse listening environments, including situations with background noise or substantial modification of the acoustic signal. This study explored the relationship between patient factors (including working memory capacity) and intelligibility and quality of modified speech for older individuals with sensorineural hearing loss. The modification was created using a combination of hearing aid processing [wide-dynamic range compression (WDRC) and frequency compression (FC)] applied to sentences in multitalker babble. The extent of signal modification was quantified via an envelope fidelity index. We also explored the contribution of components of working memory by including measures of processing speed and executive function. We hypothesized that listeners with low working memory capacity would perform more poorly than those with high working memory capacity across all situations, and would also be differentially affected by high amounts of signal modification. Results showed a significant effect of working memory capacity for speech intelligibility, and an interaction between working memory, amount of hearing loss and signal modification. Signal modification was the major predictor of quality ratings. These data add to the literature on hearing-aid processing and working memory by suggesting that the working memory-intelligibility effects may be related to aggregate signal fidelity, rather than to the specific signal manipulation. They also suggest that for individuals with low working memory capacity, sensorineural loss may be most appropriately addressed with WDRC and/or FC parameters that maintain the fidelity of the signal envelope. PMID:25999874

  16. Coaching positively influences the effects of working memory training on visual working memory as well as mathematical ability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelwan, Michel; Vissers, Constance; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H

    2018-05-01

    The goal of the present study was to test whether the amount of coaching influenced the results of working memory training on both visual and verbal working memory. Additionally, the effects of the working memory training on the amount of progress after specific training in mathematics were evaluated. In this study, 23 children between 9 and 12 years of age with both attentional and mathematical difficulties participated in a working memory training program with a high amount of coaching, while another 25 children received no working memory training. Results of these groups were compared to 21 children who completed the training with a lower amount of coaching. The quality of working memory, as well as mathematic skills, were measured three times using untrained transfer tasks. Bayesian statistics were used to test informative hypotheses. After receiving working memory training, the highly coached group performed better than the group that received less coaching on visual working memory and mathematics, but not on verbal working memory. The highly coached group retained their advantage in mathematics, even though the effect on visual working memory decreased. However, no added effect of working memory training was found on the learning curve during mathematical training. Moreover, the less-coached group was outperformed by the group that did not receive working memory training, both in visual working memory and mathematics. These results suggest that motivation and proper coaching might be crucial for ensuring compliance and effects of working memory training, and that far transfer might be possible. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Selection History Modulates Working Memory Capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo-Cheng Kuo

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have shown that past selection history affects the allocation of attention on target selection. However, it is unclear whether context-driven selection history can modulate the efficacy of attention allocation on working memory (WM representations. This study tests the influences of selection history on WM capacity. A display of one item (low load or three/four items (high load was shown for the participants to hold in WM in a delayed response task. Participants then judged whether a probe item was in the memory display or not. Selection history was defined as the number of items attended across trials in the task context within a block, manipulated by the stimulus set-size in the contexts with fewer possible stimuli (4-item or 5-item context or more possible stimuli (8-item or 9-item context from which the memorized content was selected. The capacity measure (i.e. the K parameter was estimated to reflect the number of items that can be held in WM. Across four behavioral experiments, the results revealed that the capacity was significantly reduced in the context with more possible stimuli relative to the context with fewer possible stimuli. Moreover, the reduction in capacity was significant for high WM load and not observed when the focus was on only a single item. Together, these findings indicate that context-driven selection history and focused attention influence WM capacity.

  18. Modulation of steady state functional connectivity in the default mode and working memory networks by cognitive load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newton, Allen T; Morgan, Victoria L; Rogers, Baxter P; Gore, John C

    2011-10-01

    Interregional correlations between blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signals in the resting state have been interpreted as measures of connectivity across the brain. Here we investigate whether such connectivity in the working memory and default mode networks is modulated by changes in cognitive load. Functional connectivity was measured in a steady-state verbal identity N-back task for three different conditions (N = 1, 2, and 3) as well as in the resting state. We found that as cognitive load increases, the functional connectivity within both the working memory the default mode network increases. To test whether functional connectivity between the working memory and the default mode networks changed, we constructed maps of functional connectivity to the working memory network as a whole and found that increasingly negative correlations emerged in a dorsal region of the posterior cingulate cortex. These results provide further evidence that low frequency fluctuations in BOLD signals reflect variations in neural activity and suggests interaction between the default mode network and other cognitive networks. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Cholinergic blockade under working memory demands encountered by increased rehearsal strategies: evidence from fMRI in healthy subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voss, Bianca; Thienel, Renate; Reske, Martina; Kellermann, Thilo; Sheldrick, Abigail J; Halfter, Sarah; Radenbach, Katrin; Shah, Nadim J; Habel, Ute; Kircher, Tilo T J

    2012-06-01

    The connection between cholinergic transmission and cognitive performance has been established in behavioural studies. The specific contribution of the muscarinic receptor system on cognitive performance and brain activation, however, has not been evaluated satisfyingly. To investigate the specific contribution of the muscarinic transmission on neural correlates of working memory, we examined the effects of scopolamine, an antagonist of the muscarinic receptors, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Fifteen healthy male, non-smoking subjects performed a fMRI scanning session following the application of scopolamine (0.4 mg, i.v.) or saline in a placebo-controlled, repeated measure, pseudo-randomized, single-blind design. Working memory was probed using an n-back task. Compared to placebo, challenging the cholinergic transmission with scopolamine resulted in hypoactivations in parietal, occipital and cerebellar areas and hyperactivations in frontal and prefrontal areas. These alterations are interpreted as compensatory strategies used to account for downregulation due to muscarinic acetylcholine blockade in parietal and cerebral storage systems by increased activation in frontal and prefrontal areas related to working memory rehearsal. Our results further underline the importance of cholinergic transmission to working memory performance and determine the specific contribution of muscarinic transmission on cerebral activation associated with executive functioning.

  20. Components of working memory and visual selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnham, Bryan R; Sabia, Matthew; Langan, Catherine

    2014-02-01

    Load theory (Lavie, N., Hirst, A., De Fockert, J. W., & Viding, E. [2004]. Load theory of selective attention and cognitive control. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 133, 339-354.) proposes that control of attention depends on the amount and type of load that is imposed by current processing. Specifically, perceptual load should lead to efficient distractor rejection, whereas working memory load (dual-task coordination) should hinder distractor rejection. Studies support load theory's prediction that working memory load will lead to larger distractor effects; however, these studies used secondary tasks that required only verbal working memory and the central executive. The present study examined which other working memory components (visual, spatial, and phonological) influence visual selective attention. Subjects completed an attentional capture task alone (single-task) or while engaged in a working memory task (dual-task). Results showed that along with the central executive, visual and spatial working memory influenced selective attention, but phonological working memory did not. Specifically, attentional capture was larger when visual or spatial working memory was loaded, but phonological working memory load did not affect attentional capture. The results are consistent with load theory and suggest specific components of working memory influence visual selective attention. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  1. Examining procedural working memory processing in obsessive-compulsive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahar, Nitzan; Teodorescu, Andrei R; Anholt, Gideon E; Karmon-Presser, Anat; Meiran, Nachshon

    2017-07-01

    Previous research has suggested that a deficit in working memory might underlie the difficulty of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) patients to control their thoughts and actions. However, a recent meta-analyses found only small effect sizes for working memory deficits in OCD. Recently, a distinction has been made between declarative and procedural working memory. Working memory in OCD was tested mostly using declarative measurements. However, OCD symptoms typically concerns actions, making procedural working-memory more relevant. Here, we tested the operation of procedural working memory in OCD. Participants with OCD and healthy controls performed a battery of choice reaction tasks under high and low procedural working memory demands. Reaction-times (RT) were estimated using ex-Gaussian distribution fitting, revealing no group differences in the size of the RT distribution tail (i.e., τ parameter), known to be sensitive to procedural working memory manipulations. Group differences, unrelated to working memory manipulations, were found in the leading-edge of the RT distribution and analyzed using a two-stage evidence accumulation model. Modeling results suggested that perceptual difficulties might underlie the current group differences. In conclusion, our results suggest that procedural working-memory processing is most likely intact in OCD, and raise a novel, yet untested assumption regarding perceptual deficits in OCD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Working memory capacity and overgeneral autobiographical memory in young and older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ros, Laura; Latorre, José Miguel; Serrano, Juan Pedro

    2010-01-01

    The objectives of this study are to compare the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT) performance of two healthy samples of younger and older adults and to analyse the relationship between overgeneral memory (OGM) and working memory executive processes (WMEP) using a structural equation modelling with latent variables. The AMT and sustained attention, short-term memory and working memory tasks were administered to a group of young adults (N = 50) and a group of older adults (N = 46). On the AMT, the older adults recalled a greater number of categorical memories (p = .000) and fewer specific memories (p = .000) than the young adults, confirming that OGM occurs in the normal population and increases with age. WMEP was measured by reading span and a working memory with sustained attention load task. Structural equation modelling reflects that WMEP shows a strong relationship with OGM: lower scores on WMEP reflect an OGM phenomenon characterized by higher categorical and lower specific memories.

  3. Visually encoded working memory is closely associated with mobility in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawagoe, Toshikazu; Sekiyama, Kaoru

    2014-06-01

    Previous research suggests that older adults' motor performance is associated with cognitive function. Although this has been reported especially for executive function, it is not yet clear for various types of working memory (WM). In fact, age-related decline in WM is more severe for faces than other types of visual objects. The present study focused on the relationship between diverse WM and two types of motor performance (mobility and manual dexterity), which are implicated in pathological decline. To measure diverse WM, we adopted N-back tasks using three distinct types of stimuli (numbers, locations, and faces). Mobility was measured with the timed up and go test and manual dexterity was measured with the Pegboard Test. Participants were community-dwelling older adults (age: mean 78.6 years). Comparisons of younger and older adults' N-back performances indicated that WM for faces is more sensitive to aging compared with WM for the other stimuli. Correlation analyses within the older group indicated that WM tasks mainly correlated with mobility, but less so with manual dexterity. Among the three types of WM, spatial WM and face WM had significant partial correlation coefficients with mobility after age and general cognitive decline were controlled. These results indicate that visually encoded WM is associated only with mobility, although general cognitive function is related to both motor abilities. The selective association between the visually encoded WM and mobility is discussed in terms of the interactive processes between executive processing and perceptual encoding, where dynamic visual processing for locomotion plays a role.

  4. Time and interference: Effects on working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botto, Marta; Palladino, Paola

    2016-05-01

    This study tested predictions from the time-based resource-sharing (TBRS) model with a classical verbal working memory (WM) task, where target and non-target information interfere strongly with each other. Different predictions can be formulated according to the dominant perspectives (TBRS and interference hypothesis) on the role of inhibitory control in WM task performance. Here, we aimed to trace the activation of irrelevant information, examining priming effects in a lexical decision task immediately following WM recall. Results indicate the roles of both time and interference constraints in determining task performance. In particular, the role of time available seemed crucial at the highest WM loads (i.e., 3 and 4 memoranda). These were also associated with a higher activation of no-longer-relevant information but, in this case, independently from time available for processing. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.

  5. Working memory for speech and music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze, Katrin; Koelsch, Stefan

    2012-04-01

    The present paper reviews behavioral and neuroimaging findings on similarities and differences between verbal and tonal working memory (WM), the influence of musical training, and the effect of strategy use on WM for tones. Whereas several studies demonstrate an overlap of core structures (Broca's area, premotor cortex, inferior parietal lobule), preliminary findings are discussed that imply, if confirmed, the existence of a tonal and a phonological loop in musicians. This conclusion is based on the findings of partly differing neural networks underlying verbal and tonal WM in musicians, suggesting that functional plasticity has been induced by musical training. We further propose a strong link between production and auditory WM: data indicate that both verbal and tonal auditory WM are based on the knowledge of how to produce the to-be-remembered sounds and, therefore, that sensorimotor representations are involved in the temporary maintenance of auditory information in WM. © 2012 New York Academy of Sciences.

  6. Executive working memory load induces inattentional blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fougnie, Daryl; Marois, René

    2007-02-01

    When attention is engaged in a task, unexpected events in the visual scene may go undetected, a phenomenon known as inattentional blindness (IB). At what stage of information processing must attention be engaged for IB to occur? Although manipulations that tax visuospatial attention can induce IB, the evidence is more equivocal for tasks that engage attention at late, central stages of information processing. Here, we tested whether IB can be specifically induced by central executive processes. An unexpected visual stimulus was presented during the retention interval of a working memory task that involved either simply maintaining verbal material or rearranging the material into alphabetical order. The unexpected stimulus was more likely to be missed during manipulation than during simple maintenance of the verbal information. Thus, the engagement of executive processes impairs the ability to detect unexpected, task-irrelevant stimuli, suggesting that IB can result from central, amodal stages of processing.

  7. The Development of Time-Based Prospective Memory in Childhood: The Role of Working Memory Updating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voigt, Babett; Mahy, Caitlin E. V.; Ellis, Judi; Schnitzspahn, Katharina; Krause, Ivonne; Altgassen, Mareike; Kliegel, Matthias

    2014-01-01

    This large-scale study examined the development of time-based prospective memory (PM) across childhood and the roles that working memory updating and time monitoring play in driving age effects in PM performance. One hundred and ninety-seven children aged 5 to 14 years completed a time-based PM task where working memory updating load was…

  8. Visual working memory buffers information retrieved from visual long-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukuda, Keisuke; Woodman, Geoffrey F

    2017-05-16

    Human memory is thought to consist of long-term storage and short-term storage mechanisms, the latter known as working memory. Although it has long been assumed that information retrieved from long-term memory is represented in working memory, we lack neural evidence for this and need neural measures that allow us to watch this retrieval into working memory unfold with high temporal resolution. Here, we show that human electrophysiology can be used to track information as it is brought back into working memory during retrieval from long-term memory. Specifically, we found that the retrieval of information from long-term memory was limited to just a few simple objects' worth of information at once, and elicited a pattern of neurophysiological activity similar to that observed when people encode new information into working memory. Our findings suggest that working memory is where information is buffered when being retrieved from long-term memory and reconcile current theories of memory retrieval with classic notions about the memory mechanisms involved.

  9. Concurrent performance of two memory tasks: evidence for domain-specific working memory systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cocchini, Gianna; Logie, Robert H; Della Sala, Sergio; MacPherson, Sarah E; Baddeley, Alan D

    2002-10-01

    Previous studies of dual-task coordination in working memory have shown a lack of dual-task interference when a verbal memory task is combined with concurrent perceptuomotor tracking. Two experiments are reported in which participants were required to perform pairwise combinations of (1) a verbal memory task, a visual memory task, and perceptuomotor tracking (Experiment 1), and (2) pairwise combinations of the two memory tasks and articulatory suppression (Experiment 2). Tracking resulted in no disruption of the verbal memory preload over and above the impact of a delay in recall and showed only minimal disruption of the retention of the visual memory load. Performing an ongoing verbal memory task had virtually no impact on retention of a visual memory preload or vice versa, indicating that performing two demanding memory tasks results in little mutual interference. Experiment 2 also showed minimal disruption when the two memory tasks were combined, although verbal memory (but not visual memory) was clearly disrupted by articulatory suppression interpolated between presentation and recall. These data suggest that a multiple-component working memory model provides a better account for performance in concurrent immediate memory tasks than do theories that assume a single processing and storage system or a limited-capacity attentional system coupled with activated memory traces.

  10. Effects of the D1 dopamine receptor agonist dihydrexidine (DAR-0100A) on working memory in schizotypal personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosell, Daniel R; Zaluda, Lauren C; McClure, Margaret M; Perez-Rodriguez, M Mercedes; Strike, K Sloan; Barch, Deanna M; Harvey, Philip D; Girgis, Ragy R; Hazlett, Erin A; Mailman, Richard B; Abi-Dargham, Anissa; Lieberman, Jeffrey A; Siever, Larry J

    2015-01-01

    Pharmacological enhancement of prefrontal D1 dopamine receptor function remains a promising therapeutic approach to ameliorate schizophrenia-spectrum working memory deficits, but has yet to be rigorously evaluated clinically. This proof-of-principle study sought to determine whether the active enantiomer of the selective and full D1 receptor agonist dihydrexidine (DAR-0100A) could attenuate working memory impairments in unmedicated patients with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD). We performed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of DAR-0100A (15 mg/150 ml of normal saline administered intravenously over 30 min) in medication-free patients with SPD (n=16) who met the criteria for cognitive impairment (ie, scoring below the 25th percentile on tests of working memory). We employed two measures of verbal working memory that are salient to schizophrenia-spectrum cognitive deficits, and that clinical data implicate as being associated with prefrontal D1 availability: (1) the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT); and (2) the N-back test (ratio of 2-back:0-back scores). Study procedures occurred over four consecutive days, with working memory testing on Days 1 and 4, and DAR-0100A/placebo administration on Days 2-4. Treatment with DAR-0100A was associated with significantly improved PASAT performance relative to placebo, with a very large effect size (Cohen's d=1.14). Performance on the N-back ratio was also significantly improved; however, this effect rested on both a non-significant enhancement and diminution of 2-back and 0-back performance, respectively; therefore interpretation of this finding is more complicated. DAR-0100A was generally well tolerated, with no serious medical or psychiatric adverse events; common side effects were mild to moderate and transient, consisting mainly of sedation, lightheadedness, tachycardia, and hypotension; however, we were able to minimize these effects, without altering the dose, with supportive

  11. The effects of nicotine and non-nicotine smoking factors on working memory and associated brain function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClernon, Francis Joseph; Froeliger, Brett; Rose, Jed E; Kozink, Rachel V; Addicott, Merideth A; Sweitzer, Maggie M; Westman, Eric C; Van Wert, Dana M

    2016-07-01

    Smoking abstinence impairs executive function, which may promote continued smoking behavior and relapse. The differential influence of nicotine and non-nicotine (i.e. sensory, motor) smoking factors and related neural substrates is not known. In a fully factorial, within-subjects design, 33 smokers underwent fMRI scanning following 24 hours of wearing a nicotine or placebo patch while smoking very low nicotine content cigarettes or remaining abstinent from smoking. During scanning, blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) signal was acquired while participants performed a verbal N-back task. Following 24-hour placebo (versus nicotine) administration, accuracy on the N-back task was significantly worse and task-related BOLD signal lower in dorsomedial frontal cortex. These effects were observed irrespective of smoking. Our data provide novel evidence that abstinence-induced deficits in working memory and changes in underlying brain function are due in large part to abstinence from nicotine compared with non-nicotine factors. This work has implications both for designing interventions that target abstinence-induced cognitive deficits and for nicotine-reduction policy. © 2015 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  12. Working-memory training improves developmental dyslexia in Chinese children

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yan Luo; Jing Wang; Hanrong Wu; Dongmei Zhu; Yu Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Although plasticity in the neural system underlies working memory, and working memory can be improved by training, there is thus far no evidence that children with developmental dyslexia can were recruited from an elementary school in Wuhan, China. They received working-memory training, including training in visuospatial memory, verbal memory, and central executive tasks. The difficulty of the tasks was adjusted based on the performance of each subject, and the training sessions lasted 40 minutes per day, for 5 weeks. The results showed that working-memory training significantly enhanced performance on the nontrained working memory tasks such as the visuospatial, the verbal domains, and central executive tasks in children with developmental dyslexia. More importantly, the visual rhyming task and reading fluency task were also significantly improved by training. Progress on working memory measures was related to changes in reading skills. These experimental findings indicate that working memory is a pivotal factor in reading development among children with developmental dyslexia, and interventions to improve working memory may help dyslexic children to become more proficient in reading.

  13. The Sensory Components of High-Capacity Iconic Memory and Visual Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Bradley, Claire; Pearson, Joel

    2012-01-01

    Early visual memory can be split into two primary components: a high-capacity, short-lived iconic memory followed by a limited-capacity visual working memory that can last many seconds. Whereas a large number of studies have investigated visual working memory for low-level sensory features, much research on iconic memory has used more “high-level” alphanumeric stimuli such as letters or numbers. These two forms of memory are typically examined separately, despite an intrinsic overlap in their...

  14. The sensory components of high-capacity iconic memory and visual working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Claire eBradley; Claire eBradley; Joel ePearson

    2012-01-01

    Early visual memory can be split into two primary components: a high-capacity, short-lived iconic memory followed by a limited-capacity visual working memory that can last many seconds. Whereas a large number of studies have investigated visual working memory for low-level sensory features, much research on iconic memory has used more high-level alphanumeric stimuli such as letters or numbers. These two forms of memory are typically examined separately, despite an intrinsic overlap in their c...

  15. Neural activity reveals perceptual grouping in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbitt, Laura R; Roberts, Daniel M; McDonald, Craig G; Peterson, Matthew S

    2017-03-01

    There is extensive evidence that the contralateral delay activity (CDA), a scalp recorded event-related brain potential, provides a reliable index of the number of objects held in visual working memory. Here we present evidence that the CDA not only indexes visual object working memory, but also the number of locations held in spatial working memory. In addition, we demonstrate that the CDA can be predictably modulated by the type of encoding strategy employed. When individual locations were held in working memory, the pattern of CDA modulation mimicked previous findings for visual object working memory. Specifically, CDA amplitude increased monotonically until working memory capacity was reached. However, when participants were instructed to group individual locations to form a constellation, the CDA was prolonged and reached an asymptote at two locations. This result provides neural evidence for the formation of a unitary representation of multiple spatial locations. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  16. Compression in Working Memory and Its Relationship With Fluid Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chekaf, Mustapha; Gauvrit, Nicolas; Guida, Alessandro; Mathy, Fabien

    2018-06-01

    Working memory has been shown to be strongly related to fluid intelligence; however, our goal is to shed further light on the process of information compression in working memory as a determining factor of fluid intelligence. Our main hypothesis was that compression in working memory is an excellent indicator for studying the relationship between working-memory capacity and fluid intelligence because both depend on the optimization of storage capacity. Compressibility of memoranda was estimated using an algorithmic complexity metric. The results showed that compressibility can be used to predict working-memory performance and that fluid intelligence is well predicted by the ability to compress information. We conclude that the ability to compress information in working memory is the reason why both manipulation and retention of information are linked to intelligence. This result offers a new concept of intelligence based on the idea that compression and intelligence are equivalent problems. Copyright © 2018 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  17. Storage of features, conjunctions and objects in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, E K; Woodman, G F; Luck, S J

    2001-02-01

    Working memory can be divided into separate subsystems for verbal and visual information. Although the verbal system has been well characterized, the storage capacity of visual working memory has not yet been established for simple features or for conjunctions of features. The authors demonstrate that it is possible to retain information about only 3-4 colors or orientations in visual working memory at one time. Observers are also able to retain both the color and the orientation of 3-4 objects, indicating that visual working memory stores integrated objects rather than individual features. Indeed, objects defined by a conjunction of four features can be retained in working memory just as well as single-feature objects, allowing many individual features to be retained when distributed across a small number of objects. Thus, the capacity of visual working memory must be understood in terms of integrated objects rather than individual features.

  18. High Working Memory Capacity Predicts Less Retrieval Induced Forgetting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mall, Jonathan T.; Morey, Candice C.

    2013-01-01

    Background : Working Memory Capacity (WMC) is thought to be related to executive control and focused memory search abilities. These two hypotheses make contrasting predictions regarding the effects of retrieval on forgetting. Executive control during memory retrieval is believed to lead to retrieval

  19. Storage and binding of object features in visual working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Bays, Paul M; Wu, Emma Y; Husain, Masud

    2010-01-01

    An influential conception of visual working memory is of a small number of discrete memory “slots”, each storing an integrated representation of a single visual object, including all its component features. When a scene contains more objects than there are slots, visual attention controls which objects gain access to memory.

  20. Evidence for Two Attentional Components in Visual Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Richard J.; Baddeley, Alan D.; Hitch, Graham J.

    2014-01-01

    How does executive attentional control contribute to memory for sequences of visual objects, and what does this reveal about storage and processing in working memory? Three experiments examined the impact of a concurrent executive load (backward counting) on memory for sequences of individually presented visual objects. Experiments 1 and 2 found…

  1. Neurocognition and PET: strategies for data analysis in activation studies on working memory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hautzel, H.; Mottaghy, F.M.; Schmidt, D.; Mueller, H.-W.; Krause, B. J.

    2003-01-01

    Aim: In cognitive neuroscience regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) imaging with positron-emission-tomography (PET) is a powerful tool to characterize different aspects of cognitive processes by using different data analysis approaches. By use of an n-back verbal working memory task (varied from 0- to 3-back) we present cognitive subtraction analysis as basic strategy as well as parametric and covariance analyses and discuss the results. Methods: Correlation analyses were performed using the individual performance rate as an external covariate, computing inter-regional correlations, an as network analysis applying structural equation modelling to evaluate the effective connectivity between the involved brain regions. Results: Subtraction analyses revealed a fronto-parietal neuronal network also including the anterior cingulate cortex and the cerebellum. With higher memory load the parametric analysis evidenced linear rCBF increases in prefrontal, pre-motor and inferior parietal areas including the precuneus as well as in the anterior cingulate cortex. The rCBF correlation with the individual performance as external covariate depicted negative correlations in bilateral prefrontal and inferior parietal regions, in the precuneus and the anterior cingulate cortex. The network analysis demonstrated mainly occipito-frontally directed interactions which were predominantly left-hemispheric. Additionally, strong linkages were found between extrastriate and parietal regions as well as within the parietal cortex. Conclusion: The data analysis approaches presented here contribute to an extended and more elaborated understanding of cognitive processes and their different sub-aspects. (orig.) [de

  2. Preexisting semantic representation improves working memory performance in the visuospatial domain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudner, Mary; Orfanidou, Eleni; Cardin, Velia; Capek, Cheryl M; Woll, Bencie; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2016-05-01

    Working memory (WM) for spoken language improves when the to-be-remembered items correspond to preexisting representations in long-term memory. We investigated whether this effect generalizes to the visuospatial domain by administering a visual n-back WM task to deaf signers and hearing signers, as well as to hearing nonsigners. Four different kinds of stimuli were presented: British Sign Language (BSL; familiar to the signers), Swedish Sign Language (SSL; unfamiliar), nonsigns, and nonlinguistic manual actions. The hearing signers performed better with BSL than with SSL, demonstrating a facilitatory effect of preexisting semantic representation. The deaf signers also performed better with BSL than with SSL, but only when WM load was high. No effect of preexisting phonological representation was detected. The deaf signers performed better than the hearing nonsigners with all sign-based materials, but this effect did not generalize to nonlinguistic manual actions. We argue that deaf signers, who are highly reliant on visual information for communication, develop expertise in processing sign-based items, even when those items do not have preexisting semantic or phonological representations. Preexisting semantic representation, however, enhances the quality of the gesture-based representations temporarily maintained in WM by this group, thereby releasing WM resources to deal with increased load. Hearing signers, on the other hand, may make strategic use of their speech-based representations for mnemonic purposes. The overall pattern of results is in line with flexible-resource models of WM.

  3. A Comparison of Laboratory and Clinical Working Memory Tests and Their Prediction of Fluid Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelton, Jill T.; Elliott, Emily M.; Hill, B. D.; Calamia, Matthew R.; Gouvier, Wm. Drew

    2010-01-01

    The working memory (WM) construct is conceptualized similarly across domains of psychology, yet the methods used to measure WM function vary widely. The present study examined the relationship between WM measures used in the laboratory and those used in applied settings. A large sample of undergraduates completed three laboratory-based WM measures (operation span, listening span, and n-back), as well as the WM subtests from the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III and the Wechsler Memory Scale-III. Performance on all of the WM subtests of the clinical batteries shared positive correlations with the lab measures; however, the Arithmetic and Spatial Span subtests shared lower correlations than the other WM tests. Factor analyses revealed that a factor comprising scores from the three lab WM measures and the clinical subtest, Letter-Number Sequencing (LNS), provided the best measurement of WM. Additionally, a latent variable approach was taken using fluid intelligence as a criterion construct to further discriminate between the WM tests. The results revealed that the lab measures, along with the LNS task, were the best predictors of fluid abilities. PMID:20161647

  4. Vulnerability of the frontal and parietal regions in hypertensive patients during working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xin; Wang, Wenxiao; Wang, Ailin; Li, Peng; Zhang, Junying; Tao, Wuhai; Zhang, Zhanjun

    2017-05-01

    Hypertension is related with cognitive decline in the elderly. The frontal-parietal executive system plays an important role in cognitive aging and is also vulnerable to damage in elderly patients with hypertension. Examination of the brain's functional characteristics in frontal-parietal regions of hypertension is likely to be important for understanding the neural mechanisms of hypertension's effect on cognitive aging. We address this issue by comparing hypertension and control-performers in a functional MRI study. Twenty-eight hypertensive patients and 32 elderly controls were tested with n-back task with two load levels. The hypertensive patients exhibited worse executive and memory abilities than control subjects. The patterns of brain activation changed under different working memory loads in the hypertensive patients, who exhibited reduced activation only in the precentral gyrus under low loads and reduced activation in the middle frontal gyrus, left medial superior frontal gyrus and right precuneus under high loads. Thus, more regions of diminished activation were observed in the frontal and parietal regions with increasing task difficulty. More importantly, we found that lower activation in changed frontal and parietal regions was associated with worse cognitive function in high loads. The results demonstrate the relationship between cognitive function and frontoparietal functional activation in hypertension and their relevance to cognitive aging risk. Our findings provide a better understanding of the mechanism of cognitive decline in hypertension and highlight the importance of brain protection in hypertension.

  5. Dynamic functional reorganizations and relationship with working memory performance in healthy aging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roser eSala-Llonch

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, several theories have been proposed in attempts to identify the neural mechanisms underlying successful cognitive aging. Old subjects show increased neural activity during the performance of tasks, mainly in prefrontal areas, which is interpreted as a compensatory mechanism linked to functional brain efficiency. Moreover, resting-state studies have concluded that elders show disconnection or disruption of large-scale functional networks. We used functional MRI during resting-state and a verbal n-back task with different levels of memory load in a cohort of young and old healthy adults to identify patterns of networks associated with working memory and brain default mode. We found that the disruption of resting-state networks in the elderly coexists with task-related overactivations of certain brain areas and with reorganizations within these functional networks. Moreover, elders who were able to activate additional areas and to recruit a more bilateral frontal pattern within the task-related network achieved successful performance on the task. We concluded that the balanced and plastic reorganization of brain networks underlies successful cognitive aging. This observation allows the integration of several theories that have been proposed to date regarding the aging brain.

  6. Improving everyday memory performance after acquired brain injury: An RCT on recollection and working memory training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Kim Merle; Mödden, Claudia; Eling, Paul; Hildebrandt, Helmut

    2018-04-26

    To show the effectiveness of a combined recognition and working memory training on everyday memory performance in patients suffering from organic memory disorders. In this double-blind, randomized controlled Study 36 patients with organic memory impairments, mainly attributable to stroke, were assigned to either the experimental or the active control group. In the experimental group a working memory training was combined with a recollection training based on the repetition-lag procedure. Patients in the active control group received the memory therapy usually provided in the rehabilitation center. Both groups received nine hours of therapy. Prior (T0) and subsequent (T1) to the therapy, patients were evaluated on an everyday memory test (EMT) as well as on a neuropsychological test battery. Based on factor analysis of the neuropsychological test scores at T0 we calculated composite scores for working memory, verbal learning and word fluency. After treatment, the intervention group showed a significantly greater improvement for WM performance compared with the active control group. More importantly, performance on the EMT also improved significantly in patients receiving the recollection and working memory training compared with patients with standard memory training. Our results show that combining working memory and recollection training significantly improves performance on everyday memory tasks, demonstrating far transfer effects. The present study argues in favor of a process-based approach for treating memory impairments. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  7. No differences in performance on test of working memory and executive functioning between healthy elderly postmenopausal women using or not using hormone therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grigorova, M; Sherwin, B B

    2006-06-01

    On average, ovarian function ceases at the age of 52 years so that estrogen (E) levels are chronically low following the menopause. Numerous studies have found that hormone therapy (HT) helps to protect verbal memory, a hippocampal function. Estrogen receptors are also found in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), suggesting that estrogen may modulate executive and working memory functions, both mediated by the PFC. The possible role of progesterone (P) on executive functions and working memory is unknown. To examine the relationship between neuropsychological performance, age of initiation of HT, and duration of HT use. In this cross-sectional study, the neuropsychological performance of 37 postmenopausal women (mean age, 65 years) who used either estrogen-only or sequential E + P (E-alone group)(n = 22) or E + P continuously (n = 15) was compared to that of 28 healthy postmenopausal women matched for age and education who had never used HT. It was hypothesized that the E-only users would perform better then the E + P and the never-users on neuropsychological tests of verbal memory, executive function and working memory. Results showed only minor between-group differences on working memory scores such that the E + P users were slowest to generate a response on the N-Back test of working memory. No group differences on tests of executive functions were found. There was no relationship between neuropsychological performance, age of initiation of HT, or duration of HT use.

  8. Working memory for braille is shaped by experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Henri; Scherzer, Peter; Viau, Robert; Voss, Patrice; Lepore, Franco

    2011-03-01

    Tactile working memory was found to be more developed in completely blind (congenital and acquired) than in semi-sighted subjects, indicating that experience plays a crucial role in shaping working memory. A model of working memory, adapted from the classical model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch1 and Baddeley2 is presented where the connection strengths of a highly cross-modal network are altered through experience.

  9. Working memory for braille is shaped by experience

    OpenAIRE

    Cohen, Henri; Scherzer, Peter; Viau, Robert; Voss, Patrice; Lepore, Franco

    2011-01-01

    Tactile working memory was found to be more developed in completely blind (congenital and acquired) than in semi-sighted subjects, indicating that experience plays a crucial role in shaping working memory. A model of working memory, adapted from the classical model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch1 and Baddeley2 is presented where the connection strengths of a highly cross-modal network are altered through experience.

  10. Resource-sharing in multiple-component working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Doherty, Jason M.; Logie, Robert H.

    2016-01-01

    Working memory research often focuses on measuring the capacity of the system and how it relates to other cognitive abilities. However, research into the structure of working memory is less concerned with an overall capacity measure but rather with the intricacies of underlying components and their contribution to different tasks. A number of models of working memory structure have been proposed, each with different assumptions and predictions, but none of which adequately accounts for the fu...

  11. Working memory load improves early stages of independent visual processing

    OpenAIRE

    Cocchi, Luca; Toepel, Ulrike; De Lucia, Marzia; Martuzzi, Roberto; Wood, Stephen J.; Carter, Olivia; Murray, Micah M.

    2010-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that working memory and perceptual processes are dynamically interrelated due to modulating activity in overlapping brain networks. However, the direct influence of working memory on the spatio-temporal brain dynamics of behaviorally relevant intervening information remains unclear. To investigate this issue, subjects performed a visual proximity grid perception task under three different visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) load conditions. VSWM load was manipula...

  12. Dieting and Food Cue-Related Working Memory Performance

    OpenAIRE

    Meule, Adrian

    2016-01-01

    Executive functioning (e.g., working memory) is tightly intertwined with self-regulation. For example, food cue-elicited craving has been found to impair working memory performance. Furthermore, current dieters have been found to show lower working memory performance than non-dieters. Recent research, however, suggests that it is crucial to consider dieting success in addition to current dieting status or restrained eating in order to reveal cognitive mechanisms that are associated with succe...

  13. The working memory networks of the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linden, David E J

    2007-06-01

    Working memory and short-term memory are closely related in their cognitive architecture, capacity limitations, and functional neuroanatomy, which only partly overlap with those of long-term memory. The author reviews the functional neuroimaging literature on the commonalities and differences between working memory and short-term memory and the interplay of areas with modality-specific and supramodal representations in the brain networks supporting these fundamental cognitive processes. Sensory stores in the visual, auditory, and somatosensory cortex play a role in short-term memory, but supramodal parietal and frontal areas are often recruited as well. Classical working memory operations such as manipulation, protection against interference, or updating almost certainly require at least some degree of prefrontal support, but many pure maintenance tasks involve these areas as well. Although it seems that activity shifts from more posterior regions during encoding to more anterior regions during delay, some studies reported sustained delay activity in sensory areas as well. This spatiotemporal complexity of the short-term memory/working memory networks is mirrored in the activation patterns that may explain capacity constraints, which, although most prominent in the parietal cortex, seem to be pervasive across sensory and premotor areas. Finally, the author highlights open questions for cognitive neuroscience research of working memory, such as that of the mechanisms for integrating different types of content (binding) or those providing the link to long-term memory.

  14. Memory – what is it and how it works?

    OpenAIRE

    Sanja Šešok

    2006-01-01

    Abstract: Memory system presents a basis for many cognitive functions and at the same time it itself depends on their normal function. The purpose of the article is to show how it works as an array of interacting systems, each capable of registring information, storing it, and making available by retrieval. In the case of the psychological study of memory, the most common model used for understanding memory functions is the time based model, which presume that memory can be divided into senso...

  15. Working memory and organizational skills problems in ADHD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kofler, Michael J; Sarver, Dustin E; Harmon, Sherelle L; Moltisanti, Allison; Aduen, Paula A; Soto, Elia F; Ferretti, Nicole

    2018-01-01

    This study tested model-driven predictions regarding working memory's role in the organizational problems associated with ADHD. Children aged 8-13 (M = 10.33, SD = 1.42) with and without ADHD (N = 103; 39 girls; 73% Caucasian/Non-Hispanic) were assessed on multiple, counterbalanced working memory tasks. Parents and teachers completed norm-referenced measures of organizational problems (Children's Organizational Skills Scale; COSS). Results confirmed large magnitude working memory deficits (d = 1.24) and organizational problems in ADHD (d = 0.85). Bias-corrected, bootstrapped conditional effects models linked impaired working memory with greater parent- and teacher-reported inattention, hyperactivity/impulsivity, and organizational problems. Working memory predicted organization problems across all parent and teacher COSS subscales (R 2  = .19-.23). Approximately 38%-57% of working memory's effect on organization problems was conveyed by working memory's association with inattentive behavior. Unique effects of working memory remained significant for both parent- and teacher-reported task planning, as well as for teacher-reported memory/materials management and overall organization problems. Attention problems uniquely predicted worse organizational skills. Hyperactivity was unrelated to parent-reported organizational skills, but predicted better teacher-reported task planning. Children with ADHD exhibit multisetting, broad-based organizational impairment. These impaired organizational skills are attributable in part to performance deficits secondary to working memory dysfunction, both directly and indirectly via working memory's role in regulating attention. Impaired working memory in ADHD renders it extraordinarily difficult for these children to consistently anticipate, plan, enact, and maintain goal-directed actions. © 2017 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.

  16. Unilateral prefrontal direct current stimulation effects are modulated by working memory load and gender.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meiron, Oded; Lavidor, Michal

    2013-05-01

    Recent studies revealed that anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) may improve verbal working memory (WM) performance in humans. In the present study, we evaluated executive attention, which is the core of WM capacity, considered to be significantly involved in tasks that require active maintenance of memory representations in interference-rich conditions, and is highly dependent on DLPFC function. We investigated verbal WM accuracy using a WM task that is highly sensitive to executive attention function. We were interested in how verbal WM accuracy may be affected by WM load, unilateral DLPFC stimulation, and gender, as previous studies showed gender-dependent brain activation during verbal WM tasks. We utilized a modified verbal n-Back task hypothesized to increase demands on executive attention. We examined "online" WM performance while participants received transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), and implicit learning performance in a post-stimulation WM task. Significant lateralized "online" stimulation effects were found only in the highest WM load condition revealing that males benefit from left DLPFC stimulation, while females benefit from right DLPFC stimulation. High WM load performance in the left DLPFC stimulation was significantly related to post-stimulation recall performance. Our findings support the idea that lateralized stimulation effects in high verbal WM load may be gender-dependent. Further, our post-stimulation results support the idea that increased left hemisphere activity may be important for encoding verbal information into episodic memory as well as for facilitating retrieval of context-specific targets from semantic memory. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. The effects of autobiographical memory and visual perspective on working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Zenghu; She, Yugui

    2018-08-01

    The present research aims to explore whether recalling and writing about autobiographical memory from different perspectives (first-person perspective vs. third-person perspective) could affect cognitive function. The participants first performed a working memory task to evaluate their working memory capacity as a baseline and then were instructed to recall (Study 1) or write about (Study 2) personal events (failures vs. successes) from the first-person perspective or the third-person perspective. Finally, they performed the working memory task again. The results suggested that autobiographical memory and perspective influence working memory interactively. When recalling a success, the participants who recalled from the third-person perspective performed better than those who recalled from the first-person perspective on the working memory capacity task; when recalling a failure, the opposite was true.

  18. Visuospatial imagery and working memory in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthews, Natasha L; Collins, Kathleen P; Thakkar, Katharine N; Park, Sohee

    2014-01-01

    The ability to form mental images that reconstruct former perceptual experiences is closely related to working memory (WM) ability. However, whereas WM deficits are established as a core feature of schizophrenia, an independent body of work suggests that mental imagery ability is enhanced in the disorder. Across two experiments we investigated mental imagery in schizophrenia and its relationship with WM. In Experiment 1, individuals with schizophrenia (SZ: n=15) and matched controls (CO: n=14) completed a mental imagery generation and inspection task and a spatial delayed-response WM task. In Experiment 2, SZ (n=16) and CO (n=16) completed a novel version of the mental imagery task modified to increase WM maintenance demand. In Experiment 1, SZ demonstrated enhanced mental imagery performance, as evidenced by faster response times relative to CO, with preserved accuracy. However, enhanced mental imagery in SZ was accompanied by impaired WM as assessed by the delayed-response task. In Experiment 2, when WM maintenance load was increased, SZ no longer showed superior imagery performance. We found evidence for enhanced imagery manipulation in SZ despite their WM maintenance deficit. However, this imagery enhancement was abolished when WM maintenance demands were increased. This profile of enhanced imagery manipulation but impaired maintenance could be used to implement novel remediation strategies in the disorder.

  19. Working memory, long-term memory, and medial temporal lobe function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeneson, Annette; Squire, Larry R.

    2012-01-01

    Early studies of memory-impaired patients with medial temporal lobe (MTL) damage led to the view that the hippocampus and related MTL structures are involved in the formation of long-term memory and that immediate memory and working memory are independent of these structures. This traditional idea has recently been revisited. Impaired performance in patients with MTL lesions on tasks with short retention intervals, or no retention interval, and neuroimaging findings with similar tasks have been interpreted to mean that the MTL is sometimes needed for working memory and possibly even for visual perception itself. We present a reappraisal of this interpretation. Our main conclusion is that, if the material to be learned exceeds working memory capacity, if the material is difficult to rehearse, or if attention is diverted, performance depends on long-term memory even when the retention interval is brief. This fundamental notion is better captured by the terms subspan memory and supraspan memory than by the terms short-term memory and long-term memory. We propose methods for determining when performance on short-delay tasks must depend on long-term (supraspan) memory and suggest that MTL lesions impair performance only when immediate memory and working memory are insufficient to support performance. In neuroimaging studies, MTL activity during encoding is influenced by the memory load and correlates positively with long-term retention of the material that was presented. The most parsimonious and consistent interpretation of all the data is that subspan memoranda are supported by immediate memory and working memory and are independent of the MTL. PMID:22180053

  20. Symbiosis of Executive and Selective Attention in Working Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André eVandierendonck

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The notion of working memory was introduced to account for the usage of short-term memory resources by other cognitive tasks such as reasoning, mental arithmetic, language comprehension, and many others. This collaboration between memory and other cognitive tasks can only be achieved by a dedicated working memory system that controls task coordination. To that end, working memory models include executive control. Nevertheless, other attention control systems may be involved in coordination of memory and cognitive tasks calling on memory resources. The present paper briefly reviews the evidence concerning the role of selective attention in working memory activities. A model is proposed in which selective attention control is directly linked to the executive control part of the working memory system. The model assumes that apart from storage of declarative information, the system also includes an executive working memory module that represents the current task set. Control processes are automatically triggered when particular conditions in these modules are met.. As each task set represents the parameter settings and the actions needed to achieve the task goal, it will depend on the specific settings and actions whether selective attention control will have to be shared among the active tasks. Only when such sharing is required, task performance will be affected by the capacity limits of the control system involved.

  1. Phonological working memory and FOXP2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze, Katrin; Vargha-Khadem, Faraneh; Mishkin, Mortimer

    2018-01-08

    The discovery and description of the affected members of the KE family (aKE) initiated research on how genes enable the unique human trait of speech and language. Many aspects of this genetic influence on speech-related cognitive mechanisms are still elusive, e.g. if and how cognitive processes not directly involved in speech production are affected. In the current study we investigated the effect of the FOXP2 mutation on Working Memory (WM). Half the members of the multigenerational KE family have an inherited speech-language disorder, characterised as a verbal and orofacial dyspraxia caused by a mutation of the FOXP2 gene. The core phenotype of the affected KE members (aKE) is a deficiency in repeating words, especially complex non-words, and in coordinating oromotor sequences generally. Execution of oromotor sequences and repetition of phonological sequences both require WM, but to date the aKE's memory ability in this domain has not been examined in detail. To do so we used a test series based on the Baddeley and Hitch WM model, which posits that the central executive (CE), important for planning and manipulating information, works in conjunction with two modality-specific components: The phonological loop (PL), specialized for processing speech-based information; and the visuospatial sketchpad (VSSP), dedicated to processing visual and spatial information. We compared WM performance related to CE, PL, and VSSP function in five aKE and 15 healthy controls (including three unaffected members of the KE family who do not have the FOXP2 mutation). The aKE scored significantly below this control group on the PL component, but not on the VSSP or CE components. Further, the aKE were impaired relative to the controls not only in motor (i.e. articulatory) output but also on the recognition-based PL subtest (word-list matching), which does not require speech production. These results suggest that the aKE's impaired phonological WM may be due to a defect in subvocal

  2. Endogenous-cue prospective memory involving incremental updating of working memory: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halahalli, Harsha N; John, John P; Lukose, Ammu; Jain, Sanjeev; Kutty, Bindu M

    2015-11-01

    Prospective memory paradigms are conventionally classified on the basis of event-, time-, or activity-based intention retrieval. In the vast majority of such paradigms, intention retrieval is provoked by some kind of external event. However, prospective memory retrieval cues that prompt intention retrieval in everyday life are commonly endogenous, i.e., linked to a specific imagined retrieval context. We describe herein a novel prospective memory paradigm wherein the endogenous cue is generated by incremental updating of working memory, and investigated the hemodynamic correlates of this task. Eighteen healthy adult volunteers underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging while they performed a prospective memory task where the delayed intention was triggered by an endogenous cue generated by incremental updating of working memory. Working memory and ongoing task control conditions were also administered. The 'endogenous-cue prospective memory condition' with incremental working memory updating was associated with maximum activations in the right rostral prefrontal cortex, and additional activations in the brain regions that constitute the bilateral fronto-parietal network, central and dorsal salience networks as well as cerebellum. In the working memory control condition, maximal activations were noted in the left dorsal anterior insula. Activation of the bilateral dorsal anterior insula, a component of the central salience network, was found to be unique to this 'endogenous-cue prospective memory task' in comparison to previously reported exogenous- and endogenous-cue prospective memory tasks without incremental working memory updating. Thus, the findings of the present study highlight the important role played by the dorsal anterior insula in incremental working memory updating that is integral to our endogenous-cue prospective memory task.

  3. Impairments of working memory in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder: the effect of history of psychotic symptoms and different aspects of cognitive task demands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota eFrydecka

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Comparisons of cognitive impairments between schizophrenia (SZ and bipolar disorder (BPD have produced mixed results. We applied different working memory (WM measures (Digit Span Forward and Backward, Short-delay and Long-delay CPT-AX, N-back to patients with SZ (n=23, psychotic BPD (n=19 and non-psychotic BPD (n=24, as well as to healthy controls (HC (n=18 in order to compare the level of WM impairments across the groups. With respect to the less demanding WM measures (Digit Span Forward and Backward, Short-delay CPT-AX, there were no between-groups differences in cognitive performance; however, with respect to the more demanding WM measures (Long-delay CPT-AX, N-back, we observed that the groups with psychosis (SZ, psychotic BPD did not differ from one another, but performed poorer than the group without history of psychosis (non-psychotic BPD. The history of psychotic symptoms may influence cognitive performance with respect to WM delay and load effects as measured by Long-delay CPT-AX and N-back tests respectively. We observed a positive correlation of WM performance with antipsychotic treatment and negative correlation with depressive symptoms in BPD and with negative symptoms in SZ subgroup. Our study suggests that WM dysfunctions are more closely related to the history of psychosis than to the diagnostic categories of SZ and BPD described by psychiatric classification systems.

  4. Daily variability in working memory is coupled with negative affect: the role of attention and motivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brose, Annette; Schmiedek, Florian; Lövdén, Martin; Lindenberger, Ulman

    2012-06-01

    Across days, individuals experience varying levels of negative affect, control of attention, and motivation. We investigated whether this intraindividual variability was coupled with daily fluctuations in working memory (WM) performance. In 100 days, 101 younger individuals worked on a spatial N-back task and rated negative affect, control of attention, and motivation. Results showed that individuals differed in how reliably WM performance fluctuated across days, and that subjective experiences were primarily linked to performance accuracy. WM performance was lower on days with higher levels of negative affect, reduced control of attention, and reduced task-related motivation. Thus, variables that were found to predict WM in between-subjects designs showed important relationships to WM at the within-person level. In addition, there was shared predictive variance among predictors of WM. Days with increased negative affect and reduced performance were also days with reduced control of attention and reduced motivation to work on tasks. These findings are in line with proposed mechanisms linking negative affect and cognitive performance.

  5. Effects of motor congruence on visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quak, Michel; Pecher, Diane; Zeelenberg, Rene

    2014-10-01

    Grounded-cognition theories suggest that memory shares processing resources with perception and action. The motor system could be used to help memorize visual objects. In two experiments, we tested the hypothesis that people use motor affordances to maintain object representations in working memory. Participants performed a working memory task on photographs of manipulable and nonmanipulable objects. The manipulable objects were objects that required either a precision grip (i.e., small items) or a power grip (i.e., large items) to use. A concurrent motor task that could be congruent or incongruent with the manipulable objects caused no difference in working memory performance relative to nonmanipulable objects. Moreover, the precision- or power-grip motor task did not affect memory performance on small and large items differently. These findings suggest that the motor system plays no part in visual working memory.

  6. Working memory biasing of visual perception without awareness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Yi; Lin, Bingyuan; Zhao, Yajun; Soto, David

    2014-10-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that the contents of visual working memory can bias visual processing in favor of matching stimuli in the scene. However, the extent to which such top-down, memory-driven biasing of visual perception is contingent on conscious awareness remains unknown. Here we showed that conscious awareness of critical visual cues is dispensable for working memory to bias perceptual selection mechanisms. Using the procedure of continuous flash suppression, we demonstrated that "unseen" visual stimuli during interocular suppression can gain preferential access to awareness if they match the contents of visual working memory. Strikingly, the very same effect occurred even when the visual cue to be held in memory was rendered nonconscious by masking. Control experiments ruled out the alternative accounts of repetition priming and different detection criteria. We conclude that working memory biases of visual perception can operate in the absence of conscious awareness.

  7. GABA level, gamma oscillation, and working memory performance in schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chi-Ming A. Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A relationship between working memory impairment, disordered neuronal oscillations, and abnormal prefrontal GABA function has been hypothesized in schizophrenia; however, in vivo GABA measurements and gamma band neural synchrony have not yet been compared in schizophrenia. This case–control pilot study (N = 24 compared baseline and working memory task-induced neuronal oscillations acquired with high-density electroencephalograms (EEGs to GABA levels measured in vivo with magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Working memory performance, baseline GABA level in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, and measures of gamma oscillations from EEGs at baseline and during a working memory task were obtained. A major limitation of this study is a relatively small sample size for several analyses due to the integration of diverse methodologies and participant compliance. Working memory performance was significantly lower for patients than for controls. During the working memory task, patients (n = 7 had significantly lower amplitudes in gamma oscillations than controls (n = 9. However, both at rest and across working memory stages, there were significant correlations between gamma oscillation amplitude and left DLPFC GABA level. Peak gamma frequency during the encoding stage of the working memory task (n = 16 significantly correlated with GABA level and working memory performance. Despite gamma band amplitude deficits in patients across working memory stages, both baseline and working memory-induced gamma oscillations showed strong dependence on baseline GABA levels in patients and controls. These findings suggest a critical role for GABA function in gamma band oscillations, even under conditions of system and cognitive impairments as seen in schizophrenia.

  8. GABA level, gamma oscillation, and working memory performance in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chi-Ming A; Stanford, Arielle D; Mao, Xiangling; Abi-Dargham, Anissa; Shungu, Dikoma C; Lisanby, Sarah H; Schroeder, Charles E; Kegeles, Lawrence S

    2014-01-01

    A relationship between working memory impairment, disordered neuronal oscillations, and abnormal prefrontal GABA function has been hypothesized in schizophrenia; however, in vivo GABA measurements and gamma band neural synchrony have not yet been compared in schizophrenia. This case-control pilot study (N = 24) compared baseline and working memory task-induced neuronal oscillations acquired with high-density electroencephalograms (EEGs) to GABA levels measured in vivo with magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Working memory performance, baseline GABA level in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), and measures of gamma oscillations from EEGs at baseline and during a working memory task were obtained. A major limitation of this study is a relatively small sample size for several analyses due to the integration of diverse methodologies and participant compliance. Working memory performance was significantly lower for patients than for controls. During the working memory task, patients (n = 7) had significantly lower amplitudes in gamma oscillations than controls (n = 9). However, both at rest and across working memory stages, there were significant correlations between gamma oscillation amplitude and left DLPFC GABA level. Peak gamma frequency during the encoding stage of the working memory task (n = 16) significantly correlated with GABA level and working memory performance. Despite gamma band amplitude deficits in patients across working memory stages, both baseline and working memory-induced gamma oscillations showed strong dependence on baseline GABA levels in patients and controls. These findings suggest a critical role for GABA function in gamma band oscillations, even under conditions of system and cognitive impairments as seen in schizophrenia.

  9. Alpha desynchronization/synchronization during working memory testing is compromised in acute mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arakaki, Xianghong; Shoga, Michael; Li, Lianyang; Zouridakis, George; Tran, Thao; Fonteh, Alfred N; Dawlaty, Jessica; Goldweber, Robert; Pogoda, Janice M; Harrington, Michael G

    2018-01-01

    Diagnosing and monitoring recovery of patients with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is challenging because of the lack of objective, quantitative measures. Diagnosis is based on description of injuries often not witnessed, subtle neurocognitive symptoms, and neuropsychological testing. Since working memory (WM) is at the center of cognitive functions impaired in mTBI, this study was designed to define objective quantitative electroencephalographic (qEEG) measures of WM processing that may correlate with cognitive changes associated with acute mTBI. First-time mTBI patients and mild peripheral (limb) trauma controls without head injury were recruited from the emergency department. WM was assessed by a continuous performance task (N-back). EEG recordings were obtained during N-back testing on three occasions: within five days, two weeks, and one month after injury. Compared with controls, mTBI patients showed abnormal induced and evoked alpha activity including event-related desynchronization (ERD) and synchronization (ERS). For induced alpha power, TBI patients had excessive frontal ERD on their first and third visit. For evoked alpha, mTBI patients had lower parietal ERD/ERS at the second and third visits. These exploratory qEEG findings offer new and non-invasive candidate measures to characterize the evolution of injury over the first month, with potential to provide much-needed objective measures of brain dysfunction to diagnose and monitor the consequences of mTBI.

  10. Have We Forgotten Auditory Sensory Memory? Retention Intervals in Studies of Nonverbal Auditory Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nees, Michael A

    2016-01-01

    Researchers have shown increased interest in mechanisms of working memory for nonverbal sounds such as music and environmental sounds. These studies often have used two-stimulus comparison tasks: two sounds separated by a brief retention interval (often 3-5 s) are compared, and a "same" or "different" judgment is recorded. Researchers seem to have assumed that sensory memory has a negligible impact on performance in auditory two-stimulus comparison tasks. This assumption is examined in detail in this comment. According to seminal texts and recent research reports, sensory memory persists in parallel with working memory for a period of time following hearing a stimulus and can influence behavioral responses on memory tasks. Unlike verbal working memory studies that use serial recall tasks, research paradigms for exploring nonverbal working memory-especially two-stimulus comparison tasks-may not be differentiating working memory from sensory memory processes in analyses of behavioral responses, because retention interval durations have not excluded the possibility that the sensory memory trace drives task performance. This conflation of different constructs may be one contributor to discrepant research findings and the resulting proliferation of theoretical conjectures regarding mechanisms of working memory for nonverbal sounds.

  11. Everyday memory and working memory in adolescents with mild intellectual disability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Molen, M.J.; van Luit, J.E.H.; van der Molen, M.W.; Jongmans, M.J.

    2010-01-01

    Everyday memory and its relationship to working memory was investigated in adolescents with mild intellectual disability and compared to typically developing adolescents of the same age (CA) and younger children matched on mental age (MA). Results showed a delay on almost all memory measures for the

  12. Working Memory and Short-Term Memory Abilities in Accomplished Multilinguals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biedron, Adriana; Szczepaniak, Anna

    2012-01-01

    The role of short-term memory and working memory in accomplished multilinguals was investigated. Twenty-eight accomplished multilinguals were compared to 36 mainstream philology students. The following instruments were used in the study: three memory subtests of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale (Digit Span, Digit-Symbol Coding, and Arithmetic,…

  13. Manipulations of attention dissociate fragile visual short-term memory from visual working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vandenbroucke, A.R.E.; Sligte, I.G.; Lamme, V.A.F.

    2011-01-01

    People often rely on information that is no longer in view, but maintained in visual short-term memory (VSTM). Traditionally, VSTM is thought to operate on either a short time-scale with high capacity - iconic memory - or a long time scale with small capacity - visual working memory. Recent research

  14. Everyday Memory and Working Memory in Adolescents with Mild Intellectual Disability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Molen, M. J.; Van Luit, J. E. H.; Van der Molen, Maurits W.; Jongmans, Marian J.

    2010-01-01

    Everyday memory and its relationship to working memory was investigated in adolescents with mild intellectual disability and compared to typically developing adolescents of the same age (CA) and younger children matched on mental age (MA). Results showed a delay on almost all memory measures for the adolescents with mild intellectual disability…

  15. Neural Correlates of Visual Short-term Memory Dissociate between Fragile and Working Memory Representations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vandenbroucke, A.R.; Sligte, I.G.; Vries, J.G. de; Cohen, M.S.; Lamme, V.A.F.

    2015-01-01

    Evidence is accumulating that the classic two-stage model of visual STM (VSTM), comprising iconic memory (IM) and visual working memory (WM), is incomplete. A third memory stage, termed fragile VSTM (FM), seems to exist in between IM and WM [Vandenbroucke, A. R. E., Sligte, I. G., & Lamme, V. A. F.

  16. Neural correlates of visual short-term memory dissociate between fragile and working memory representations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vandenbroucke, A.R.E.; Sligte, I.G.; de Vries, J.G.; Cohen, M.X.; Lamme, V.A.F.

    2015-01-01

    Evidence is accumulating that the classic two-stage model of visual STM (VSTM), comprising iconic memory (IM) and visual working memory (WM), is incomplete. A third memory stage, termed fragile VSTM (FM), seems to exist in between IM and WM [Vandenbroucke, A. R. E., Sligte, I. G., & Lamme, V. A. F.

  17. Introduction to the special issue on visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Jeremy M

    2014-10-01

    Visual working memory is a volatile, limited-capacity memory that appears to play an important role in our impression of a visual world that is continuous in time. It also mediates between the contents of the mind and the contents of that visual world. Research on visual working memory has become increasingly prominent in recent years. The articles in this special issue of Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics describe new empirical findings and theoretical understandings of the topic.

  18. Working Memory, Language Skills, and Autism Symptomatology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jillian M. Schuh

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available While many studies have reported working memory (WM impairments in autism spectrum disorders, others do not. Sample characteristics, WM domain, and task complexity likely contribute to these discrepancies. Although deficits in visuospatial WM have been more consistently documented, there is much controversy regarding verbal WM in autism. The goal of the current study was to explore visuospatial and verbal WM in a well-controlled sample of children with high-functioning autism (HFA and typical development. Individuals ages 9–17 with HFA (n = 18 and typical development (n = 18, were carefully matched on gender, age, IQ, and language, and were administered a series of standardized visuospatial and verbal WM tasks. The HFA group displayed significant impairment across WM domains. No differences in performance were noted across WM tasks for either the HFA or typically developing groups. Over and above nonverbal cognition, WM abilities accounted for significant variance in language skills and symptom severity. The current study suggests broad WM limitations in HFA. We further suggest that deficits in verbal WM are observed in more complex tasks, as well as in simpler tasks, such as phonological WM. Increased task complexity and linguistic demands may influence WM abilities.

  19. Working memory for pitch, timbre, and words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillmann, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    Aiming to further our understanding of fundamental mechanisms of auditory working memory (WM), the present study compared performance for three auditory materials (words, tones, timbres). In a forward recognition task (Experiment 1) participants indicated whether the order of the items in the second sequence was the same as in the first sequence. In a backward recognition task (Experiment 2) participants indicated whether the items of the second sequence were played in the correct backward order. In Experiment 3 participants performed an articulatory suppression task during the retention delay of the backward task. To investigate potential length effects the number of items per sequence was manipulated. Overall findings underline the benefit of a cross-material experimental approach and suggest that human auditory WM is not a unitary system. Whereas WM processes for timbres differed from those for tones and words, similarities and differences were observed for words and tones: Both types of stimuli appear to rely on rehearsal mechanisms, but might differ in the involved sensorimotor codes. PMID:23116413

  20. Working Memory Capacity as a Dynamic Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmering, Vanessa R.; Perone, Sammy

    2013-01-01

    A well-known characteristic of working memory (WM) is its limited capacity. The source of such limitations, however, is a continued point of debate. Developmental research is positioned to address this debate by jointly identifying the source(s) of limitations and the mechanism(s) underlying capacity increases. Here we provide a cross-domain survey of studies and theories of WM capacity development, which reveals a complex picture: dozens of studies from 50 papers show nearly universal increases in capacity estimates with age, but marked variation across studies, tasks, and domains. We argue that the full pattern of performance cannot be captured through traditional approaches emphasizing single causes, or even multiple separable causes, underlying capacity development. Rather, we consider WM capacity as a dynamic process that emerges from a unified cognitive system flexibly adapting to the context and demands of each task. We conclude by enumerating specific challenges for researchers and theorists that will need to be met in order to move our understanding forward. PMID:23335902

  1. Emotional working memory during sustained wakefulness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tempesta, Daniela; De Gennaro, Luigi; Presaghi, Fabio; Ferrara, Michele

    2014-12-01

    In the present study we investigated whether one night of sleep deprivation can affect working memory (WM) performance with emotional stimuli. Twenty-five subjects were tested after one night of sleep deprivation and after one night of undisturbed sleep at home. As a second aim of the study, to evaluate the cumulative effects of sleep loss and of time-of-day changes on emotional WM ability, the subjects were tested every 4 h, from 22:00 to 10:00 hours, in four testing sessions during the sleep deprivation period (deprivation sessions: D1, D2, D3 and D4). Subjects performed the following test battery: Psychomotor Vigilance Task, 0-back task, 2-back task and an 'emotional 2-back task' with neutral, positive and negative emotional pictures selected from the International Affective Picture System. Results showed lower accuracy in the emotional WM task when the participants were sleep-deprived relative to when they had slept, suggesting the crucial role of sleep for preserving WM ability. In addition, the accuracy for the negative pictures remains stable during the sessions performed from 22:00 to 06:00 hours (D1, D2 and D3), while it drops at the D4 session, when the participants had accumulated the longest sleep debt. It is suggested that, during sleep loss, attentional and WM mechanisms may be sustained by the higher arousing characteristics of the emotional (negative) stimuli. © 2014 European Sleep Research Society.

  2. Working memory and planning during sentence production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Randi C; Yan, Hao; Schnur, Tatiana T

    2014-10-01

    Speakers retrieve conceptual, syntactic and lexical information in advance of articulation during sentence production. What type of working memory (WM) store is used to hold the planned information before speaking? To address this question, we measured onset latencies when subjects produced sentences that began with either a complex or a simple initial noun phrase, while holding semantic, phonological or spatial information in WM. Although we found that subjects had longer onset latencies for sentences beginning with a complex noun phrase, showing a phrasal scope of planning, the magnitude of this complexity effect was not affected by any type of WM load. However, subjects made more syntactic errors (but not lexical errors) for sentences beginning with a complex noun phrase, suggesting that advance planning for these phrases occurs at a syntactic rather than lexical-semantic level, which may account for the lack of effect with various types of WM load in the current study. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Working memory is partially preserved during sleep.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme Daltrozzo

    Full Text Available Although several cognitive processes, including speech processing, have been studied during sleep, working memory (WM has never been explored up to now. Our study assessed the capacity of WM by testing speech perception when the level of background noise and the sentential semantic length (SSL (amount of semantic information required to perceive the incongruence of a sentence were modulated. Speech perception was explored with the N400 component of the event-related potentials recorded to sentence final words (50% semantically congruent with the sentence, 50% semantically incongruent. During sleep stage 2 and paradoxical sleep: (1 without noise, a larger N400 was observed for (short and long SSL sentences ending with a semantically incongruent word compared to a congruent word (i.e. an N400 effect; (2 with moderate noise, the N400 effect (observed at wake with short and long SSL sentences was attenuated for long SSL sentences. Our results suggest that WM for linguistic information is partially preserved during sleep with a smaller capacity compared to wake.

  4. Cerebrocerebellar networks during articulatory rehearsal and verbal working memory tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, S H Annabel; Desmond, John E

    2005-01-15

    Converging evidence has implicated the cerebellum in verbal working memory. The current fMRI study sought to further characterize cerebrocerebellar participation in this cognitive process by revealing regions of activation common to a verbal working task and an articulatory control task, as well as regions that are uniquely activated by working memory. Consistent with our model's predictions, load-dependent activations were observed in Broca's area (BA 44/6) and the superior cerebellar hemisphere (VI/CrusI) for both working memory and motoric rehearsal. In contrast, activations unique to verbal working memory were found in the inferior parietal lobule (BA 40) and the right inferior cerebellum hemisphere (VIIB). These findings provide evidence for two cerebrocerebellar networks for verbal working memory: a frontal/superior cerebellar articulatory control system and a parietal/inferior cerebellar phonological storage system.

  5. The Role of Working Memory in Multimedia Instruction: Is Working Memory Working during Learning from Text and Pictures?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuler, Anne; Scheiter, Katharina; van Genuchten, Erlijn

    2011-01-01

    A lot of research has focused on the beneficial effects of using multimedia, that is, text and pictures, for learning. Theories of multimedia learning are based on Baddeley's working memory model (Baddeley 1999). Despite this theoretical foundation, there is only little research that aims at empirically testing whether and more importantly how…

  6. Attention, Working Memory, and Long-Term Memory in Multimedia Learning: An Integrated Perspective Based on Process Models of Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweppe, Judith; Rummer, Ralf

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive models of multimedia learning such as the Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning (Mayer 2009) or the Cognitive Load Theory (Sweller 1999) are based on different cognitive models of working memory (e.g., Baddeley 1986) and long-term memory. The current paper describes a working memory model that has recently gained popularity in basic…

  7. Working Memory Underpins Cognitive Development, Learning, and Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowan, Nelson

    2014-01-01

    Working memory is the retention of a small amount of information in a readily accessible form. It facilitates planning, comprehension, reasoning, and problem solving. I examine the historical roots and conceptual development of the concept and the theoretical and practical implications of current debates about working memory mechanisms. Then, I…

  8. Taking Working Memory Training from the Laboratory into Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Joni; Gathercole, Susan Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    Working memory skills have been shown to be enhanced by adaptive training in several randomised controlled trials. Here, two field trials were conducted in which teachers administered working memory training to their own pupils in school. Twenty-two children aged 8-9?years participated in Trial 1. In Trial 2, 50 children aged 9-11?years with the…

  9. Working Memory Weaknesses in Students with ADHD: Implications for Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinussen, Rhonda; Major, Ashley

    2011-01-01

    Students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are at risk for academic underachievement. Children and youth with ADHD have been found to exhibit impairments on neuropsychological measures of executive functions, including working memory. Working memory is important to attentional control and learning. This article defines working…

  10. Sentence Complexity and Working Memory Effects in Ambiguity Resolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ji Hyon; Christianson, Kiel

    2013-01-01

    Two self-paced reading experiments using a paraphrase decision task paradigm were performed to investigate how sentence complexity contributed to the relative clause (RC) attachment preferences of speakers of different working memory capacities (WMCs). Experiment 1 (English) showed working memory effects on relative clause processing in both…

  11. Vocabulary and Working Memory in Children Fit with Hearing Aids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stiles, Derek J.; McGregor, Karla K.; Bentler, Ruth A.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: To determine whether children with mild-to-moderately severe sensorineural hearing loss (CHL) present with disturbances in working memory and whether these disturbances relate to the size of their receptive vocabularies. Method: Children 6 to 9 years of age participated. Aspects of working memory were tapped by articulation rate, forward…

  12. On the Law Relating Processing to Storage in Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrouillet, Pierre; Portrat, Sophie; Camos, Valerie

    2011-01-01

    "Working memory" is usually defined in cognitive psychology as a system devoted to the simultaneous processing and maintenance of information. However, although many models of working memory have been put forward during the last decades, they often leave underspecified the dynamic interplay between processing and storage. Moreover, the account of…

  13. Working Memory, Motivation, and Teacher-Initiated Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, David W.; Shell, Duane F.

    2006-01-01

    Working memory is where we "think" as we learn. A notion that emerges as a synthesis from several threads in the research literatures of cognition, motivation, and connectionism is that motivation in learning is the process whereby working memory resource allocation is instigated and sustained. This paper reviews much literature on motivation and…

  14. Working Memory and Cognitive Styles in Adolescents' Attainment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Packiam Alloway, Tracy; Banner, Gloria E.; Smith, Patrick

    2010-01-01

    Background: Working memory, the ability to store and process information, is strongly related to learning outcomes. Aims: The aim of the present study is to extend previous research on early learning and investigate the relationship between working memory, cognitive styles, and attainment in adolescents using both national curriculum tests and…

  15. Escaping Capture: Bilingualism Modulates Distraction from Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez, Mireia; Costa, Albert; Humphreys, Glyn W.

    2012-01-01

    We ask whether bilingualism aids cognitive control over the inadvertent guidance of visual attention from working memory and from bottom-up cueing. We compare highly-proficient Catalan-Spanish bilinguals with Spanish monolinguals in three visual search conditions. In the working memory (WM) condition, attention was driven in a top-down fashion by…

  16. The Implications of Congenital Deafness for Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalifoux, Lisa M.

    1991-01-01

    A. Baddeley's model of the working memory of congenitally deaf persons is examined in light of research on encoding by this population. It is concluded that a model of the working memory of the deaf must include subsystems for articulatory, sign, and visual encoding. (Author/DB)

  17. Working memory limitations in children with severe language impairment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Daal, J.G.H.L. van; Verhoeven, L.T.W.; Leeuwe, J.F.J. van; Balkom, L.J.M. van

    2008-01-01

    In the present study, the relations of various aspects of working memory to various aspects of language problems in a clinical sample of 97 Dutch speaking 5-year-old children with severe language problems were studied. The working memory and language abilities of the children were examined using an

  18. Declarative and Procedural Working Memory: Common Principles, Common Capacity Limits?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klus Oberauer

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Working memory is often described as a system for simultaneous storage and processing. Much research – and most measures of working-memory capacity – focus on the storage component only, that is, people's ability to recall or recognize items after short retention intervals. The mechanisms of processing information are studied in a separate research tradition, concerned with the selection and control of actions in simple choice situations, dual-task constellations, or task-switching setups. both research traditions investigate performance based on representations that are temporarily maintained in an active, highly accessible state, and constrained by capacity limits. In this article an integrated theoretical framework of declarative and procedural working memory is presented that relates the two domains of research to each other. Declarative working memory is proposed to hold representations available for processing (including recall and recognition, whereas procedural working memory holds representations that control processing (i. e., task sets, stimulus-response mappings, and executive control settings. The framework motivates two hypotheses: Declarative and procedural working memory have separate capacity limits, and they operate by analogous principles. The framework also suggests a new characterization of executive functions as the subset of processes governed by procedural working memory that has as its output a change in the conditions of operation of the working-memory system.

  19. Modularity, Working Memory, and Second Language Acquisition: A Research Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truscott, John

    2017-01-01

    Considerable reason exists to view the mind, and language within it, as modular, and this view has an important place in research and theory in second language acquisition (SLA) and beyond. But it has had very little impact on the study of working memory and its role in SLA. This article considers the need for modular study of working memory,…

  20. Cerebellar Damage Produces Selective Deficits in Verbal Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravizza, Susan M.; Mccormick, Cristin A.; Schlerf, John E.; Justus, Timothy; Ivry, Richard B.; Fiez, Julie A.

    2006-01-01

    The cerebellum is often active in imaging studies of verbal working memory, consistent with a putative role in articulatory rehearsal. While patients with cerebellar damage occasionally exhibit a mild impairment on standard neuropsychological tests of working memory, these tests are not diagnostic for exploring these processes in detail. The…

  1. L2 Working Memory Capacity and L2 Reading Skill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrington, Mike; Sawyer, Mark

    1992-01-01

    Examines the sensitivity of second-language (L2) working memory (ability to store and process information simultaneously) to differences in reading skills among advanced L2 learners. Subjects with larger L2 working memory capacities scored higher on measures of L2 reading skills, but no correlation was found between reading and passive short-term…

  2. Spatial Working Memory Capacity Predicts Bias in Estimates of Location

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, L. Elizabeth; Landy, David; Salthouse, Timothy A.

    2016-01-01

    Spatial memory research has attributed systematic bias in location estimates to a combination of a noisy memory trace with a prior structure that people impose on the space. Little is known about intraindividual stability and interindividual variation in these patterns of bias. In the current work, we align recent empirical and theoretical work on…

  3. Working Memory Capacity and Categorization: Individual Differences and Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewandowsky, Stephan

    2011-01-01

    Working memory is crucial for many higher-level cognitive functions, ranging from mental arithmetic to reasoning and problem solving. Likewise, the ability to learn and categorize novel concepts forms an indispensable part of human cognition. However, very little is known about the relationship between working memory and categorization, and…

  4. Tone Series and the Nature of Working Memory Capacity Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Katherine M.; Hardman, Kyle O.; Schachtman, Todd R.; Saults, J. Scott; Glass, Bret A.; Cowan, Nelson

    2018-01-01

    Recent advances in understanding visual working memory, the limited information held in mind for use in ongoing processing, are extended here to examine auditory working memory development. Research with arrays of visual objects has shown how to distinguish the capacity, in terms of the "number" of objects retained, from the…

  5. High visual working memory capacity in trait social anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moriya, Jun; Sugiura, Yoshinori

    2012-01-01

    Working memory capacity is one of the most important cognitive functions influencing individual traits, such as attentional control, fluid intelligence, and also psychopathological traits. Previous research suggests that anxiety is associated with impaired cognitive function, and studies have shown low verbal working memory capacity in individuals with high trait anxiety. However, the relationship between trait anxiety and visual working memory capacity is still unclear. Considering that people allocate visual attention more widely to detect danger under threat, visual working memory capacity might be higher in anxious people. In the present study, we show that visual working memory capacity increases as trait social anxiety increases by using a change detection task. When the demand to inhibit distractors increased, however, high visual working memory capacity diminished in individuals with social anxiety, and instead, impaired filtering of distractors was predicted by trait social anxiety. State anxiety was not correlated with visual working memory capacity. These results indicate that socially anxious people could potentially hold a large amount of information in working memory. However, because of an impaired cognitive function, they could not inhibit goal-irrelevant distractors and their performance decreased under highly demanding conditions.

  6. Working memory, intelligence and reading ability in children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Jonge, P.; de Jong, P.F.

    1996-01-01

    The dimensions of working memory in children and the relationships between working memory capacity, reasoning and reading ability were investigated. Simple and complex span tests were administered to 280 grade four, five and six elementary school children. Simple span tests were hypothesized to

  7. Social working memory: Neurocognitive networks and directions for future research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meghan L Meyer

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Navigating the social world requires the ability to maintain and manipulate information about people’s beliefs, traits, and mental states. We characterize this capacity as social working memory. To date, very little research has explored this phenomenon, in part because of the assumption that general working memory systems would support working memory for social information. Various lines of research, however, suggest that social cognitive processing relies on a neurocognitive network (i.e., the ‘mentalizing network’ that is functionally distinct from, and considered antagonistic with, the canonical working memory network. Here, we review evidence suggesting that demanding social cognition requires social working memory and that both the mentalizing and canonical working memory neurocognitive networks support social working memory. The neural data run counter to the common finding of parametric decreases in mentalizing regions as a function of working memory demand and suggest that the mentalizing network can support demanding cognition, when it is demanding social cognition. Implications for individual differences in social cognition and pathologies of social cognition are discussed.

  8. Verbal Working Memory in Children with Cochlear Implants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nittrouer, Susan; Caldwell-Tarr, Amanda; Low, Keri E.; Lowenstein, Joanna H.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: Verbal working memory in children with cochlear implants and children with normal hearing was examined. Participants: Ninety-three fourth graders (47 with normal hearing, 46 with cochlear implants) participated, all of whom were in a longitudinal study and had working memory assessed 2 years earlier. Method: A dual-component model of…

  9. Goal-neglect links Stroop interference with working memory capacity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Morey, C.C.; Elliott, E.M.; Wiggers, J.; Eaves, S.L.; Shelton, J.T.; Mall, Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    Relationships between Stroop interference and working memory capacity may reflect individual differences in resolving conflict, susceptibility to goal neglect, or both of these factors. We compared relationships between working memory capacity and three Stroop tasks: a classic, printed color-word

  10. White matter hyperintensities and working memory : An explorative study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Harten, Barbera; Weinstein, Henry C.; Scheltens, Philip; Sergeant, Joseph A.; Scherder, Erik J. A.; Oosterman, J

    2008-01-01

    White matter hyperintensities (WMH) are commonly observed in elderly people and may have the most profound effect on executive functions, including working memory. Surprisingly, the Digit Span backward, a frequently employed working memory task, reveals no association with WMH. In the present study,

  11. Content-specific working memory modulation of the attentional blink

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Akyürek, Elkan G.; Abedian-Amiri, Ali; Ostermeier, Sonja M.

    2011-01-01

    Three experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of working memory content on temporal attention in a rapid serial visual presentation attentional blink paradigm. It was shown that categorical similarity between working memory content and the target stimuli pertaining to the attentional

  12. The interaction of working memory performance and episodic memory formation in patients with Korsakoff's amnesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geldorp, B. van; Bergmann, H.C.; Robertson, J.; Wester, A.J.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2012-01-01

    Both neuroimaging work and studies investigating amnesic patients have shown involvement of the medial temporal lobe during working memory tasks, especially when multiple items or features have to be associated. However, so far no study has examined the relationship between working memory and

  13. The interaction of working memory performance and episodic memory formation in patients with Korsakoff's amnesia.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geldorp, B. van; Bergmann, H.C.; Robertson, J.; Wester, A.J.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2012-01-01

    Both neuroimaging work and studies investigating amnesic patients have shown involvement of the medial temporal lobe during working memory tasks, especially when multiple items or features have to be associated. However, so far no study has examined the relationship between working memory and

  14. Blurring of emotional and non-emotional memories by taxing working memory during recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Hout, Marcel A; Eidhof, Marloes B; Verboom, Jesse; Littel, Marianne; Engelhard, Iris M

    2014-01-01

    Memories that are recalled while working memory (WM) is taxed, e.g., by making eye movements (EM), become blurred during the recall + EM and later recall, without EM. This may help to explain the effects of Eye Movement and Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in which patients make EM during trauma recall. Earlier experimental studies on recall + EM have focused on emotional memories. WM theory suggests that recall + EM is superior to recall only but is silent about effects of memory emotionality. Based on the emotion and memory literature, we examined whether recall + EM has superior effects in blurring emotional memories relative to neutral memories. Healthy volunteers recalled negative or neutral memories, matched for vividness, while visually tracking a dot that moved horizontally ("recall + EM") or remained stationary ("recall only"). Compared to a pre-test, a post-test (without concentrating on the dot) replicated earlier findings: negative memories are rated as less vivid after "recall + EM" but not after "recall only". This was not found for neutral memories. Emotional memories are more taxing than neutral memories, which may explain the findings. Alternatively, transient arousal induced by recall of aversive memories may promote reconsolidation of the blurred memory image that is provoked by EM.

  15. Working memory and intelligibility of hearing-aid processed speech

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela eSouza

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Previous work suggested that individuals with low working memory capacity may be at a disadvantage in adverse listening environments, including situations with background noise or substantial modification of the acoustic signal. This study explored the relationship between patient factors (including working memory capacity and intelligibility and quality of modified speech for older individuals with sensorineural hearing loss. The modification was created using a combination of hearing aid processing (wide-dynamic range compression and frequency compression applied to sentences in multitalker babble. The extent of signal modification was quantified via an envelope fidelity index. We also explored the contribution of components of working memory by including measures of processing speed and executive function. We hypothesized that listeners with low working memory capacity would perform more poorly than those with high working memory capacity across all situations, and would also be differentially affected by high amounts of signal modification. Results showed a significant effect of working memory capacity for speech intelligibility, and an interaction between working memory, amount of hearing loss and signal modification. Signal modification was the major predictor of quality ratings. These data add to the literature on hearing-aid processing and working memory by suggesting that the working memory-intelligibility effects may be related to aggregate signal fidelity, rather than on the specific signal manipulation. They also suggest that for individuals with low working memory capacity, sensorineural loss may be most appropriately addressed with wide-dynamic range compression and/or frequency compression parameters that maintain the fidelity of the signal envelope.

  16. The role of working memory in auditory selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalton, Polly; Santangelo, Valerio; Spence, Charles

    2009-11-01

    A growing body of research now demonstrates that working memory plays an important role in controlling the extent to which irrelevant visual distractors are processed during visual selective attention tasks (e.g., Lavie, Hirst, De Fockert, & Viding, 2004). Recently, it has been shown that the successful selection of tactile information also depends on the availability of working memory (Dalton, Lavie, & Spence, 2009). Here, we investigate whether working memory plays a role in auditory selective attention. Participants focused their attention on short continuous bursts of white noise (targets) while attempting to ignore pulsed bursts of noise (distractors). Distractor interference in this auditory task, as measured in terms of the difference in performance between congruent and incongruent distractor trials, increased significantly under high (vs. low) load in a concurrent working-memory task. These results provide the first evidence demonstrating a causal role for working memory in reducing interference by irrelevant auditory distractors.

  17. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pallesen, Karen Johanne; Brattico, Elvira; Bailey, Christopher J

    2010-01-01

    focus on task-relevant stimuli, a skill which is crucial to working memory. We measured the blood oxygenation-level dependent (BOLD) activation signal in musicians and non-musicians during working memory of musical sounds to determine the relation among performance, musical competence and generally...... hemisphere, and bilaterally in the posterior dorsal prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate gyrus. The relationship between the task performance and the magnitude of the BOLD response was more positive in musicians than in non-musicians, particularly during the most difficult working memory task....... The results confirm previous findings that neural activity increases during enhanced working memory performance. The results also suggest that superior working memory task performance in musicians rely on an enhanced ability to exert sustained cognitive control. This cognitive benefit in musicians may...

  18. Have We Forgotten Auditory Sensory Memory? Retention Intervals in Studies of Nonverbal Auditory Working Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael A. Nees

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Researchers have shown increased interest in mechanisms of working memory for nonverbal sounds such as music and environmental sounds. These studies often have used two-stimulus comparison tasks: two sounds separated by a brief retention interval (often 3 to 5 s are compared, and a same or different judgment is recorded. Researchers seem to have assumed that sensory memory has a negligible impact on performance in auditory two-stimulus comparison tasks. This assumption is examined in detail in this comment. According to seminal texts and recent research reports, sensory memory persists in parallel with working memory for a period of time following hearing a stimulus and can influence behavioral responses on memory tasks. Unlike verbal working memory studies that use serial recall tasks, research paradigms for exploring nonverbal working memory—especially two-stimulus comparison tasks—may not be differentiating working memory from sensory memory processes in analyses of behavioral responses, because retention interval durations have not excluded the possibility that the sensory memory trace drives task performance. This conflation of different constructs may be one contributor to discrepant research findings and the resulting proliferation of theoretical conjectures regarding mechanisms of working memory for nonverbal sounds.

  19. Effectiveness of music therapy on focused attention, working memory and stress in Type 2 diabetes: An exploratory study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Indira Tumuluri

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive deficits are reported in diabetes mellitus type 2 (DM2. Previous research has shown that music-based intervention can not only reduce hyperglycemia but also target cognitive functions as well as stress. The aim of this exploratory study was to understand the effect of active participation in music therapy (MT on the cognitive deficits of DM2 patients. MT of twenty sessions was carried out with three participants with DM2. Serum cortisol, perceived stress, Color Trail Test (1 and 2, and verbal n-back (1 and 2 tests were used to measure the outcomes. Feedback was taken for the subjective ratings and satisfaction of the participants. Stress and cortisol reduced and focused attention and working memory improved in varying degrees. Subjectively, participants reported having benefitted from the intervention. This is the first attempt to investigate the effect of music-based intervention on cognitive function in DM2 patients using case study approach.

  20. Identifying ADHD children using hemodynamic responses during a working memory task measured by functional near-infrared spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Yue; Miao, Shuo; Han, Junxia; Liang, Zhenhu; Ouyang, Gaoxiang; Yang, Jian; Li, Xiaoli

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting children and adults. Previous studies found that functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) can reveal significant group differences in several brain regions between ADHD children and healthy controls during working memory tasks. This study aimed to use fNIRS activation patterns to identify ADHD children from healthy controls. Approach. FNIRS signals from 25 ADHD children and 25 healthy controls performing the n-back task were recorded; then, multivariate pattern analysis was used to discriminate ADHD individuals from healthy controls, and classification performance was evaluated for significance by the permutation test. Main results. The results showed that 86.0% (pADHD children from healthy controls based on fNIRS signals, which argues for the potential utility of fNIRS in future assessments.

  1. Effectiveness of Music Therapy on Focused Attention, Working Memory and Stress in Type 2 Diabetes: An Exploratory Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tumuluri, Indira; Hegde, Shantala; Nagendra, H R

    2017-01-01

    Cognitive deficits are reported in diabetes mellitus type 2 (DM2). Previous research has shown that music-based intervention can not only reduce hyperglycemia but also target cognitive functions as well as stress. The aim of this exploratory study was to understand the effect of active participation in music therapy (MT) on the cognitive deficits of DM2 patients. MT of twenty sessions was carried out with three participants with DM2. Serum cortisol, perceived stress, Color Trail Test (1 and 2), and verbal n-back (1 and 2) tests were used to measure the outcomes. Feedback was taken for the subjective ratings and satisfaction of the participants. Stress and cortisol reduced and focused attention and working memory improved in varying degrees. Subjectively, participants reported having benefitted from the intervention. This is the first attempt to investigate the effect of music-based intervention on cognitive function in DM2 patients using case study approach.

  2. Working Memory, Controlled Attention and Task Switching

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Engle, Randall

    2000-01-01

    Eight sets of studies are reported that support a model my colleagues and I have developed which views WM as a system consisting of those long-term memory traces active above threshold, the procedures...

  3. The Effectiveness of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS on Working Memory in Patients with Major Depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahboube Ebadi

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS on working memory in patients with major depression. Materials and Methods: The research method was quasi-experimental with pretest and post-test and follow-up with control group. The research population comprised female outpatient referrals to private psychiatric centers and psychological counseling centers in Tehran in the first half of 2016, They had received a diagnosis of depression by a psychiatrist at least once. Of these, 30 females were selected as a sample group with convenience sampling method and based on the criteria of inclusion and exclusion and were divided randomly into two groups , experimental (n = 15 and control (n = 15 group. The experimental group received transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS in 10 sessions, While this intervention was not provided to the control group. The data were collected by N-BACK. Analysis of variance with repeated measurments was used to test the research hypothesis. Results: The results showed that transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS had a significant effect on increasing working memory and the impact will continue to follow up. Conclusion: Therefore, this approach can be used to improve working memory in people with major depression.

  4. White matter integrity of the medial forebrain bundle and attention and working memory deficits following traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owens, Jacqueline A; Spitz, Gershon; Ponsford, Jennie L; Dymowski, Alicia R; Ferris, Nicholas; Willmott, Catherine

    2017-02-01

    The medial forebrain bundle (MFB) contains ascending catecholamine fibers that project to the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Damage to these fibers following traumatic brain injury (TBI) may alter extracellular catecholamine levels in the PFC and impede attention and working memory ability. This study investigated white matter microstructure of the medial MFB, specifically the supero-lateral branch (slMFB), following TBI, and its association with performance on attention and working memory tasks. Neuropsychological measures of attention and working memory were administered to 20 moderate-severe participants with TBI (posttraumatic amnesia M  = 40.05 ± 37.10 days, median time since injury 10.48 months, range 3.72-87.49) and 20 healthy controls. Probabilistic tractography was used to obtain fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) values for 17 participants with TBI and 20 healthy controls. When compared to controls, participants with TBI were found to have significantly lower FA ( p  attention task, n -back, and Symbol Digit Modalities Test. This study was the first to demonstrate microstructural white matter damage within the slMFB following TBI. However, no evidence was found for an association of alterations to this tract and performance on attentional tasks.

  5. Do Interpreters Indeed Have Superior Working Memory in Interpreting

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    于飞

    2012-01-01

    With the frequent communications between China and western countries in the field of economy,politics and culture,etc,Inter preting becomes more and more important to people in all walks of life.This paper aims to testify the author’s hypothesis "professional interpreters have similar short-term memory with unprofessional interpreters,but they have superior working memory." After the illustration of literatures concerning with consecutive interpreting,short-term memory and working memory,experiments are designed and analysis are described.

  6. The ties to unbind: Age-related differences in feature (unbinding in working memory for emotional faces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Didem ePehlivanoglu

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available In the present study, we investigated age-related differences in the processing of emotional stimuli. Specifically, we were interested in whether older adults would show deficits in unbinding emotional expression (i.e., either no emotion, happiness, anger, or disgust from bound stimuli (i.e., photographs of faces expressing these emotions, as a hyperbinding account of age-related differences in working memory would predict. Younger and older adults completed different N-Back tasks (side-by-side 0-Back, 1-Back, 2-Back under three conditions: match/mismatch judgments based on either the identity of the face (identity condition, the face’s emotional expression (expression condition, or both identity and expression of the face (binding condition. Both age groups performed more slowly and with lower accuracy in the expression condition than in the binding condition, indicating the presence of an unbinding process. This unbinding effect was more pronounced in older adults than in younger adults, but only in the 2-Back task. Thus, older adults seemed to have a specific deficit in unbinding in working memory, over and beyond age-related differences observed in perceptual processing (0-Back and attention/short-term memory (1-Back. Additionally, no age-related differences were found in accuracy in the 0-Back task, but such differences emerged in the 1-Back task, and were further magnified in the 2-Back task, indicating independent age-related differences in attention/short-term memory and working memory. Pupil dilation data confirmed that the attention/short-term memory version of the task (1-Back is more effortful in older adults than younger adults.

  7. Learned reward association improves visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Mengyuan; Li, Sheng

    2014-04-01

    Statistical regularities in the natural environment play a central role in adaptive behavior. Among other regularities, reward association is potentially the most prominent factor that influences our daily life. Recent studies have suggested that pre-established reward association yields strong influence on the spatial allocation of attention. Here we show that reward association can also improve visual working memory (VWM) performance when the reward-associated feature is task-irrelevant. We established the reward association during a visual search training session, and investigated the representation of reward-associated features in VWM by the application of a change detection task before and after the training. The results showed that the improvement in VWM was significantly greater for items in the color associated with high reward than for those in low reward-associated or nonrewarded colors. In particular, the results from control experiments demonstrate that the observed reward effect in VWM could not be sufficiently accounted for by attentional capture toward the high reward-associated item. This was further confirmed when the effect of attentional capture was minimized by presenting the items in the sample and test displays of the change detection task with the same color. The results showed significantly larger improvement in VWM performance when the items in a display were in the high reward-associated color than those in the low reward-associated or nonrewarded colors. Our findings suggest that, apart from inducing space-based attentional capture, the learned reward association could also facilitate the perceptual representation of high reward-associated items through feature-based attentional modulation.

  8. Disrupted Working Memory Circuitry in Adolescent Psychosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariel Eckfeld

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Individuals with schizophrenia (SZ consistently show deficits in spatial working memory (WM and associated atypical patterns of neural activity within key WM regions, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC and parietal cortices. However, little research has focused on adolescent psychosis (AP and potential age-associated disruptions of WM circuitry that may occur in youth with this severe form of illness. Here we utilized each subject’s individual spatial WM capacity to investigate task-based neural dysfunction in 17 patients with AP (16.58 ± 2.60 years old as compared to 17 typically developing, demographically comparable adolescents (18.07 ± 3.26 years old. AP patients showed lower behavioral performance at higher WM loads and lower overall WM capacity compared to healthy controls. Whole-brain activation analyses revealed greater bilateral precentral and right postcentral activity in controls relative to AP patients, when controlling for individual WM capacity. Seed-based psychophysiological interaction (PPI analyses revealed significantly greater co-activation between the left dlPFC and left frontal pole in controls relative to AP patients. Significant group-by-age interactions were observed in both whole-brain and PPI analyses, with AP patients showing atypically greater neural activity and stronger coupling between WM task activated brain regions as a function of increasing age. Additionally, AP patients demonstrated positive relationships between right dlPFC neural activity and task performance, but unlike healthy controls, failed to show associations between neural activity and out-of-scanner neurocognitive performance. Collectively, these findings are consistent with atypical WM-related functioning and disrupted developmental processes in youth with AP.

  9. Acute working memory improvement after tDCS in antidepressant-free patients with major depressive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Janaina F; Zanão, Tamires A; Valiengo, Leandro; Lotufo, Paulo A; Benseñor, Isabela M; Fregni, Felipe; Brunoni, André R

    2013-03-14

    Based on previous studies showing that transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), a non-invasive brain stimulation technique that employs weak, direct currents to induce cortical-excitability changes, might be useful for working memory (WM) enhancement in healthy subjects and also in treating depressive symptoms, our aim was to evaluate whether tDCS could acutely enhance WM in depressed patients. Twenty-eight age- and gender-matched, antidepressant-free depressed subjects received a single-session of active/sham tDCS in a randomized, double-blind, parallel design. The anode was positioned over the left and the cathode over the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. The n-back task was used for assessing WM and it was performed immediately before and 15min after tDCS onset. We found that active vs. sham tDCS led to an increase in the rate of correct responses. We also used signal detection theory analyses to show that active tDCS increased both discriminability, i.e., the ability to discriminate signal (correct responses) from noise (false alarms), and response criterion, indicating a lower threshold to yield responses. All effect sizes were large. In other words, one session of tDCS acutely enhanced WM in depressed subjects, suggesting that tDCS can improve "cold" (non affective-loaded) working memory processes in MDD. Based on these findings, we discuss the effects of tDCS on WM enhancement in depression. We also suggest that the n-back task could be used as a biomarker in future tDCS studies investigating prefrontal activity in healthy and depressed samples. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. NOS1 ex1f-VNTR polymorphism influences prefrontal brain oxygenation during a working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopf, Juliane; Schecklmann, Martin; Hahn, Tim; Dresler, Thomas; Dieler, Alica C; Herrmann, Martin J; Fallgatter, Andreas J; Reif, Andreas

    2011-08-15

    Nitric oxide (NO) synthase produces NO, which serves as first and second messenger in neurons, where the protein is encoded by the NOS1 gene. A functional variable number of tandem repeats (VNTR) polymorphism in the promoter region of the alternative first exon 1f of NOS1 is associated with various functions of human behavior, for example increased impulsivity, while another, non-functional variant was linked to decreased verbal working memory and a heightened risk for schizophrenia. We therefore investigated the influence of NOS1 ex 1f-VNTR on working memory function as reflected by both behavioral measures and prefrontal oxygenation. We hypothesized that homozygous short allele carriers exhibit altered brain oxygenation in task-related areas, namely the dorsolateral and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex and the parietal cortex. To this end, 56 healthy subjects were stratified into a homozygous long allele group and a homozygous short allele group comparable for age, sex and intelligence. All subjects completed a letter n-back task (one-, two-, and three-back), while concentration changes of oxygenated (O(2)Hb) hemoglobin in the prefrontal cortex were measured with functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS). We found load-associated O(2)Hb increases in the prefrontal and parts of the parietal cortex. Significant load-associated oxygenation differences between the two genotype groups could be shown for the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the parietal cortex. Specifically, short allele carriers showed a significantly larger increase in oxygenation in all three n-back tasks. This suggests a potential compensatory mechanism, with task-related brain regions being more active in short allele carriers to compensate for reduced NOS1 expression. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Negative affect improves the quality of memories: trading capacity for precision in sensory and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spachtholz, Philipp; Kuhbandner, Christof; Pekrun, Reinhard

    2014-08-01

    Research has shown that negative affect reduces working memory capacity. Commonly, this effect has been attributed to an allocation of resources to task-irrelevant thoughts, suggesting that negative affect has detrimental consequences for working memory performance. However, rather than simply being a detrimental effect, the affect-induced capacity reduction may reflect a trading of capacity for precision of stored representations. To test this hypothesis, we induced neutral or negative affect and concurrently measured the number and precision of representations stored in sensory and working memory. Compared with neutral affect, negative affect reduced the capacity of both sensory and working memory. However, in both memory systems, this decrease in capacity was accompanied by an increase in precision. These findings demonstrate that observers unintentionally trade capacity for precision as a function of affective state and indicate that negative affect can be beneficial for the quality of memories. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  12. Long-term pitch memory for music recordings is related to auditory working memory precision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hedger, Stephen C; Heald, Shannon Lm; Nusbaum, Howard C

    2018-04-01

    Most individuals have reliable long-term memories for the pitch of familiar music recordings. This pitch memory (1) appears to be normally distributed in the population, (2) does not depend on explicit musical training and (3) only seems to be weakly related to differences in listening frequency estimates. The present experiment was designed to assess whether individual differences in auditory working memory could explain variance in long-term pitch memory for music recordings. In Experiment 1, participants first completed a musical note adjustment task that has been previously used to assess working memory of musical pitch. Afterward, participants were asked to judge the pitch of well-known music recordings, which either had or had not been shifted in pitch. We found that performance on the pitch working memory task was significantly related to performance in the pitch memory task using well-known recordings, even when controlling for overall musical experience and familiarity with each recording. In Experiment 2, we replicated these findings in a separate group of participants while additionally controlling for fluid intelligence and non-pitch-based components of auditory working memory. In Experiment 3, we demonstrated that participants could not accurately judge the pitch of unfamiliar recordings, suggesting that our method of pitch shifting did not result in unwanted acoustic cues that could have aided participants in Experiments 1 and 2. These results, taken together, suggest that the ability to maintain pitch information in working memory might lead to more accurate long-term pitch memory.

  13. The relationship between working memory and L2 reading comprehension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammadtaghi Shahnazari-Dorcheh

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Since an important role for working memory has been found in the first language acquisition (e.g., Daneman, 1991 Daneman & Green, 1986 Waters & Caplan, 1996, research on the role of working memory is emerging as an area of concern for second language acquisition (e.g., Atkins & Baddeley, 1998 Miyake & Freidman, 1998 Robinson, 1995, 2002, 2005. The present study focused on the role of working memory capacity in the development of second language reading ability. 55 L1 Persian EFL learners at three proficiency levels from a private language school participated in this study. They completed a battery of reading and working memory measures. Memory measures included phonological short-term memory, and reading span test (RST. Reading measures included two expository reading comprehension tests. Multiple regression analysis was applied to determine whether there are any significant relationships between working memory capacity and reading measures. Results of this study indicated a significant relationship between working memory capacity (as measured by RST and reading ability at lower levels of proficiency.

  14. How visual working memory contents influence priming of visual attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlisle, Nancy B; Kristjánsson, Árni

    2017-04-12

    Recent evidence shows that when the contents of visual working memory overlap with targets and distractors in a pop-out search task, intertrial priming is inhibited (Kristjánsson, Sævarsson & Driver, Psychon Bull Rev 20(3):514-521, 2013, Experiment 2, Psychonomic Bulletin and Review). This may reflect an interesting interaction between implicit short-term memory-thought to underlie intertrial priming-and explicit visual working memory. Evidence from a non-pop-out search task suggests that it may specifically be holding distractors in visual working memory that disrupts intertrial priming (Cunningham & Egeth, Psychol Sci 27(4):476-485, 2016, Experiment 2, Psychological Science). We examined whether the inhibition of priming depends on whether feature values in visual working memory overlap with targets or distractors in the pop-out search, and we found that the inhibition of priming resulted from holding distractors in visual working memory. These results are consistent with separate mechanisms of target and distractor effects in intertrial priming, and support the notion that the impact of implicit short-term memory and explicit visual working memory can interact when each provides conflicting attentional signals.

  15. A metacognitive visuospatial working memory training for children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Caviola

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available The paper studies whether visuospatial working memory (VSWM and, specifically, recall of sequential-spatial information, can be improved by metacognitive training. Twenty-two fourth-grade children were involved in seven sessions of sequential-spatial memory training, while twenty-four children attended lessons given by their teacher. The posttraining evaluation demonstrated a specific improvement of performances in the Corsi blocks task, considered a sequential-spatial working memory task. However, no benefits of training were observed in either a verbal working memory task or a simultaneous-spatial working memory task. The results have important theoretical implications, in the study of VSWM components, and educational implications, in catering for children with specific VSWM impairments.

  16. The Role of Motor Affordances in Visual Working Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diane Pecher

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Motor affordances are important for object knowledge. Semantic tasks on visual objects often show interactions with motor actions. Prior neuro-imaging studies suggested that motor affordances also play a role in visual working memory for objects. When participants remembered manipulable objects (e.g., hammer greater premotor cortex activation was observed than when they remembered non-manipulable objects (e.g., polar bear. In the present study participants held object pictures in working memory while performing concurrent tasks such as articulation of nonsense syllables and performing hand movements. Although concurrent tasks did interfere with working memory performance, in none of the experiments did we find any evidence that concurrent motor tasks affected memory differently for manipulable and non-manipulable objects. I conclude that motor affordances are not used for visual working memory.

  17. Are working memory deficits in bipolar disorder markers for psychosis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Daniel N; Randall, Carol; Bello, Danielle; Armstrong, Christina; Frantom, Linda; Cross, Chad; Kinney, Jefferson

    2010-03-01

    Working memory deficits have been identified in bipolar disorder, but there is evidence suggesting that these deficits may be markers for psychosis rather than affective disorder. The current study examined this issue by comparing two groups of individuals with bipolar disorder, one with psychotic features and one without psychotic features, with a group of normal controls. Working memory was conceptualized as a multicomponent system that includes auditory and visuospatial short-term stores, executive control processes, and an episodic buffer that allows for communication between short- and long-term memory stores (Baddeley & Logie, 1999). Results indicated that only executive control processes significantly differentiated the psychotic and nonpsychotic bipolar groups, although visuospatial working memory differentiated both bipolar groups from controls. The results support the idea that some aspects of working memory performance are markers for psychosis, while others may be more general markers for bipolar disorders. Copyright 2010 APA, all rights reserved

  18. Gender differences in episodic memory and visual working memory including the effects of age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pauls, Franz; Petermann, Franz; Lepach, Anja Christina

    2013-01-01

    Analysing the relationship between gender and memory, and examining the effects of age on the overall memory-related functioning, are the ongoing goals of psychological research. The present study examined gender and age group differences in episodic memory with respect to the type of task. In addition, these subgroup differences were also analysed in visual working memory. A sample of 366 women and 330 men, aged between 16 and 69 years of age, participated in the current study. Results indicate that women outperformed men on auditory memory tasks, whereas male adolescents and older male adults showed higher level performances on visual episodic and visual working memory measures. However, the size of gender-linked effects varied somewhat across age groups. Furthermore, results partly support a declining performance on episodic memory and visual working memory measures with increasing age. Although age-related losses in episodic memory could not be explained by a decreasing verbal and visuospatial ability with age, women's advantage in auditory episodic memory could be explained by their advantage in verbal ability. Men's higher level visual episodic memory performance was found to result from their advantage in visuospatial ability. Finally, possible methodological, biological, and cognitive explanations for the current findings are discussed.

  19. Modeling the Role of Working Memory and Episodic Memory in Behavioral Tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Zilli, Eric A.; Hasselmo, Michael E.

    2008-01-01

    The mechanisms of goal-directed behavior have been studied using reinforcement learning theory, but these theoretical techniques have not often been used to address the role of memory systems in performing behavioral tasks. The present work addresses this shortcoming by providing a way in which working memory and episodic memory may be included in the reinforcement learning framework, then simulating the successful acquisition and performance of six behavioral tasks, drawn from or inspired by...

  20. The influence of working memory capacity on experimental heat pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakae, Aya; Endo, Kaori; Adachi, Tomonori; Ikeda, Takashi; Hagihira, Satoshi; Mashimo, Takashi; Osaka, Mariko

    2013-10-01

    Pain processing and attention have a bidirectional interaction that depends upon one's relative ability to use limited-capacity resources. However, correlations between the size of limited-capacity resources and pain have not been evaluated. Working memory capacity, which is a cognitive resource, can be measured using the reading span task (RST). In this study, we hypothesized that an individual's potential working memory capacity and subjective pain intensity are related. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated 31 healthy participants' potential working memory capacity using the RST, and then applied continuous experimental heat stimulation using the listening span test (LST), which is a modified version of the RST. Subjective pain intensities were significantly lower during the challenging parts of the RST. The pain intensity under conditions where memorizing tasks were performed was compared with that under the control condition, and it showed a correlation with potential working memory capacity. These results indicate that working memory capacity reflects the ability to process information, including precise evaluations of changes in pain perception. In this work, we present data suggesting that changes in subjective pain intensity are related, depending upon individual potential working memory capacities. Individual working memory capacity may be a phenotype that reflects sensitivity to changes in pain perception. Copyright © 2013 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Ego Depletion Does Not Interfere With Working Memory Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ranjit K; Göritz, Anja S

    2018-01-01

    Ego depletion happens if exerting self-control reduces a person's capacity to subsequently control themselves. Previous research has suggested that ego depletion not only interferes with subsequent self-control but also with working memory. However, recent meta-analytical evidence casts doubt onto this. The present study tackles the question if ego depletion does interfere with working memory performance. We induced ego depletion in two ways: using an e-crossing task and using a Stroop task. We then measured working memory performance using the letter-number sequencing task. There was no evidence of ego depletion interfering with working memory performance. Several aspects of our study render this null finding highly robust. We had a large and heterogeneous sample of N = 1,385, which provided sufficient power. We deployed established depletion tasks from two task families (e-crossing task and Stroop), thus making it less likely that the null finding is due to a specific depletion paradigm. We derived several performance scores from the working memory task and ran different analyses to maximize the chances of finding an effect. Lastly, we controlled for two potential moderators, the implicit theories about willpower and dispositional self-control capacity, to ensure that a possible effect on working memory is not obscured by an interaction effect. In sum, this experiment strengthens the position that ego depletion works but does not affect working memory performance.

  2. Childhood Obesity and Academic Performance: The Role of Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Nan; Chen, Yulu; Yang, Jinhua; Li, Fei

    2017-01-01

    The present study examined the role of working memory in the association between childhood obesity and academic performance, and further determined whether memory deficits in obese children are domain-specific to certain tasks or domain-general. A total of 227 primary school students aged 10-13 years were analyzed for weight and height, of which 159 children (44 "obese," 23 "overweight," and 92 "normal weight") filled out questionnaires on school performance and socioeconomic status. And then, all subjects finished three kinds of working memory tasks based on the digit memory task in 30 trials, which were image-generated with a series of numbers recall trial sets. After each trial set, subjects were given 5 s to recall and write down the numbers which hand appeared in the trial, in the inverse order in which they had appeared. The results showed there were significant academic performance differences among the three groups, with normal-weight children scoring higher than overweight and obese children after Bonferroni correction. A mediation model revealed a partial indirect effect of working memory in the relationship between obesity and academic performance. Although the performance of obese children in basic working memory tests was poorer than that of normal-weight children, they recalled more items than normal-weight children in working memory tasks involving with food/drink. Working memory deficits partially explain the poor academic performance of obese children. Those results indicated the obese children show domain-specific working memory deficits, whereas they recall more items than normal-weight children in working memory tasks associated with food/drink.

  3. Working memory resources are shared across sensory modalities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmela, V R; Moisala, M; Alho, K

    2014-10-01

    A common assumption in the working memory literature is that the visual and auditory modalities have separate and independent memory stores. Recent evidence on visual working memory has suggested that resources are shared between representations, and that the precision of representations sets the limit for memory performance. We tested whether memory resources are also shared across sensory modalities. Memory precision for two visual (spatial frequency and orientation) and two auditory (pitch and tone duration) features was measured separately for each feature and for all possible feature combinations. Thus, only the memory load was varied, from one to four features, while keeping the stimuli similar. In Experiment 1, two gratings and two tones-both containing two varying features-were presented simultaneously. In Experiment 2, two gratings and two tones-each containing only one varying feature-were presented sequentially. The memory precision (delayed discrimination threshold) for a single feature was close to the perceptual threshold. However, as the number of features to be remembered was increased, the discrimination thresholds increased more than twofold. Importantly, the decrease in memory precision did not depend on the modality of the other feature(s), or on whether the features were in the same or in separate objects. Hence, simultaneously storing one visual and one auditory feature had an effect on memory precision equal to those of simultaneously storing two visual or two auditory features. The results show that working memory is limited by the precision of the stored representations, and that working memory can be described as a resource pool that is shared across modalities.

  4. Working, declarative and procedural memory in specific language impairment

    OpenAIRE

    Lum, Jarrad A.G.; Conti-Ramsden, Gina; Page, Debra; Ullman, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    According to the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH), abnormalities of brain structures underlying procedural memory largely explain the language deficits in children with specific language impairment (SLI). These abnormalities are posited to result in core deficits of procedural memory, which in turn explain the grammar problems in the disorder. The abnormalities are also likely to lead to problems with other, non-procedural functions, such as working memory, that rely at least partly on the...

  5. Frontoparietal tDCS Benefits Visual Working Memory in Older Adults With Low Working Memory Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arciniega, Hector; Gözenman, Filiz; Jones, Kevin T; Stephens, Jaclyn A; Berryhill, Marian E

    2018-01-01

    Working memory (WM) permits maintenance of information over brief delays and is an essential executive function. Unfortunately, WM is subject to age-related decline. Some evidence supports the use of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to improve visual WM. A gap in knowledge is an understanding of the mechanism characterizing these tDCS linked effects. To address this gap, we compared the effects of two tDCS montages designed on visual working memory (VWM) performance. The bifrontal montage was designed to stimulate the heightened bilateral frontal activity observed in aging adults. The unilateral frontoparietal montage was designed to stimulate activation patterns observed in young adults. Participants completed three sessions (bilateral frontal, right frontoparietal, sham) of anodal tDCS (20 min, 2 mA). During stimulation, participants performed a visual long-term memory (LTM) control task and a visual WM task. There was no effect of tDCS on the LTM task. Participants receiving right unilateral tDCS showed a WM benefit. This pattern was most robust in older adults with low WM capacity. To address the concern that the key difference between the two tDCS montages could be tDCS over the posterior parietal cortex (PPC), we included new analyses from a previous study applying tDCS targeting the PPC paired with a recognition VWM task. No significant main effects were found. A subsequent experiment in young adults found no significant effect of either tDCS montage on either task. These data indicate that tDCS montage, age and WM capacity should be considered when designing tDCS protocols. We interpret these findings as suggestive that protocols designed to restore more youthful patterns of brain activity are superior to those that compensate for age-related changes.

  6. Levels of processing and language modality specificity in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudner, Mary; Karlsson, Thomas; Gunnarsson, Johan; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2013-03-01

    Neural networks underpinning working memory demonstrate sign language specific components possibly related to differences in temporary storage mechanisms. A processing approach to memory systems suggests that the organisation of memory storage is related to type of memory processing as well. In the present study, we investigated for the first time semantic, phonological and orthographic processing in working memory for sign- and speech-based language. During fMRI we administered a picture-based 2-back working memory task with Semantic, Phonological, Orthographic and Baseline conditions to 11 deaf signers and 20 hearing non-signers. Behavioural data showed poorer and slower performance for both groups in Phonological and Orthographic conditions than in the Semantic condition, in line with depth-of-processing theory. An exclusive masking procedure revealed distinct sign-specific neural networks supporting working memory components at all three levels of processing. The overall pattern of sign-specific activations may reflect a relative intermodality difference in the relationship between phonology and semantics influencing working memory storage and processing. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Working memory and new learning following pediatric traumatic brain injury.

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    Mandalis, Anna; Kinsella, Glynda; Ong, Ben; Anderson, Vicki

    2007-01-01

    Working memory (WM), the ability to monitor, process and maintain task relevant information on-line to respond to immediate environmental demands, is controlled by frontal systems (D'Esposito et al., 2006), which are particularly vulnerable to damage from a traumatic brain injury (TBI). This study employed the adult-based Working Memory model of Baddeley and Hitch (1974) to examine the relationship between working memory function and new verbal learning in children with TBI. A cross-sectional sample of 36 school-aged children with a moderate to severe TBI was compared to age-matched healthy Controls on a series of tasks assessing working memory subsystems: the Phonological Loop (PL) and Central Executive (CE). The TBI group performed significantly more poorly than Controls on the PL measure and the majority of CE tasks. On new learning tasks, the TBI group consistently produced fewer words than Controls across the learning and delayed recall phases. Results revealed impaired PL function related to poor encoding and acquisition on a new verbal learning task in the TBI group. CE retrieval deficits in the TBI group contributed to general memory dysfunction in acquisition, retrieval and recognition memory. These results suggest that the nature of learning and memory deficits in children with TBI is related to working memory impairment.

  8. Working memory capacity and addiction treatment outcomes in adolescents.

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    Houck, Jon M; Feldstein Ewing, Sarah W

    2018-01-01

    Brief addiction treatments including motivational interviewing (MI) have shown promise with adolescents, but the factors that influence treatment efficacy in this population remain unknown. One candidate is working memory, the ability to hold a fact or thought in mind. This is relevant, as in therapy, a client must maintain and manipulate ideas while working with a clinician. Working memory depends upon brain structures and functions that change markedly during neurodevelopment and that can be negatively impacted by substance use. In a secondary analysis of data from a clinical trial for adolescent substance use comparing alcohol/marijuana education and MI, we evaluated the relationship between working memory and three-month treatment-outcomes with the hypothesis that the relationship between intervention conditions and outcome would be moderated by working memory. With a diverse sample of adolescents currently using alcohol and/or marijuana (N = 153, 64.7% male, 70.6% Hispanic), we examined the relationship between baseline measures of working memory and alcohol and cannabis-related problem scores measured at the three-month follow-up. The results showed that lower working memory scores were associated with poorer treatment response only for alcohol use, and only within the education group. No relationship was found between working memory and treatment outcomes in the MI group. The results suggest that issues with working memory capacity may interfere with adolescents' ability to process and implement didactic alcohol and marijuana content in standard education interventions. These results also suggest that MI can be implemented equally effectively across the range of working memory functioning in youth.

  9. The effect of emotional content on brain activation and the late positive potential in a word n-back task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliane Kopf

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: There is mounting evidence for the influence of emotional content on working memory performance. This is particularly important in light of the emotion processing that needs to take place when emotional content interferes with executive functions. In this study, we used emotional words of different valence but with similar arousal levels in an n-back task. METHODS: We examined the effects on activation in the prefrontal cortex by means of functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS and on the late positive potential (LPP. FNIRS and LPP data were examined in 30 healthy subjects. RESULTS: BEHAVIORAL RESULTS SHOW AN INFLUENCE OF VALENCE ON THE ERROR RATE DEPENDING ON THE DIFFICULTY OF THE TASK: more errors were made when the valence was negative and the task difficult. Brain activation was dependent both on the difficulty of the task and on the valence: negative valence of a word diminished the increase in activation, whereas positive valence did not influence the increase in activation, while difficulty levels increased. The LPP also differentiated between the different valences, and in addition was influenced by the task difficulty, the more difficult the task, the less differentiation could be observed. CONCLUSIONS: Summarized, this study shows the influence of valence on a verbal working memory task. When a word contained a negative valence, the emotional content seemed to take precedence in contrast to words containing a positive valence. Working memory and emotion processing sites seemed to overlap and compete for resources even when words are carriers of the emotional content.

  10. Media multitasking and memory: Differences in working memory and long-term memory.

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    Uncapher, Melina R; K Thieu, Monica; Wagner, Anthony D

    2016-04-01

    Increasing access to media in the 21st century has led to a rapid rise in the prevalence of media multitasking (simultaneous use of multiple media streams). Such behavior is associated with various cognitive differences, such as difficulty filtering distracting information and increased trait impulsivity. Given the rise in media multitasking by children, adolescents, and adults, a full understanding of the cognitive profile of media multitaskers is imperative. Here we investigated the relationship between chronic media multitasking and working memory (WM) and long-term memory (LTM) performance. Four key findings are reported (1) heavy media multitaskers (HMMs) exhibited lower WM performance, regardless of whether external distraction was present or absent; (2) lower performance on multiple WM tasks predicted lower LTM performance; (3) media multitasking-related differences in memory reflected differences in discriminability rather than decision bias; and (4) attentional impulsivity correlated with media multitasking behavior and reduced WM performance. These findings suggest that chronic media multitasking is associated with a wider attentional scope/higher attentional impulsivity, which may allow goal-irrelevant information to compete with goal-relevant information. As a consequence, heavy media multitaskers are able to hold fewer or less precise goal-relevant representations in WM. HMMs' wider attentional scope, combined with their diminished WM performance, propagates forward to yield lower LTM performance. As such, chronic media multitasking is associated with a reduced ability to draw on the past--be it very recent or more remote--to inform present behavior.

  11. The time course of working memory effects on visual attention differs depending on memory type

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dombrowe, I.; Olivers, C.N.L.; Donk, M.

    2010-01-01

    Previous work has generated inconsistent results with regard to what extent working memory (WM) content guides visual attention. Some studies found effects of easy to verbalize stimuli, whereas others only found an influence of visual memory content. To resolve this, we compared the time courses of

  12. Worrying Thoughts Limit Working Memory Capacity in Math Anxiety.

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    Shi, Zhan; Liu, Peiru

    2016-01-01

    Sixty-one high-math-anxious persons and sixty-one low-math-anxious persons completed a modified working memory capacity task, designed to measure working memory capacity under a dysfunctional math-related context and working memory capacity under a valence-neutral context. Participants were required to perform simple tasks with emotionally benign material (i.e., lists of letters) over short intervals while simultaneously reading and making judgments about sentences describing dysfunctional math-related thoughts or sentences describing emotionally-neutral facts about the world. Working memory capacity for letters under the dysfunctional math-related context, relative to working memory capacity performance under the valence-neutral context, was poorer overall in the high-math-anxious group compared with the low-math-anxious group. The findings show a particular difficulty employing working memory in math-related contexts in high-math-anxious participants. Theories that can provide reasonable interpretations for these findings and interventions that can reduce anxiety-induced worrying intrusive thoughts or improve working memory capacity for math anxiety are discussed.

  13. A theory of working memory without consciousness or sustained activity

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    Trübutschek, Darinka; Marti, Sébastien; Ojeda, Andrés; King, Jean-Rémi; Mi, Yuanyuan; Tsodyks, Misha; Dehaene, Stanislas

    2017-01-01

    Working memory and conscious perception are thought to share similar brain mechanisms, yet recent reports of non-conscious working memory challenge this view. Combining visual masking with magnetoencephalography, we investigate the reality of non-conscious working memory and dissect its neural mechanisms. In a spatial delayed-response task, participants reported the location of a subjectively unseen target above chance-level after several seconds. Conscious perception and conscious working memory were characterized by similar signatures: a sustained desynchronization in the alpha/beta band over frontal cortex, and a decodable representation of target location in posterior sensors. During non-conscious working memory, such activity vanished. Our findings contradict models that identify working memory with sustained neural firing, but are compatible with recent proposals of ‘activity-silent’ working memory. We present a theoretical framework and simulations showing how slowly decaying synaptic changes allow cell assemblies to go dormant during the delay, yet be retrieved above chance-level after several seconds. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.23871.001 PMID:28718763

  14. Worrying Thoughts Limit Working Memory Capacity in Math Anxiety.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhan Shi

    Full Text Available Sixty-one high-math-anxious persons and sixty-one low-math-anxious persons completed a modified working memory capacity task, designed to measure working memory capacity under a dysfunctional math-related context and working memory capacity under a valence-neutral context. Participants were required to perform simple tasks with emotionally benign material (i.e., lists of letters over short intervals while simultaneously reading and making judgments about sentences describing dysfunctional math-related thoughts or sentences describing emotionally-neutral facts about the world. Working memory capacity for letters under the dysfunctional math-related context, relative to working memory capacity performance under the valence-neutral context, was poorer overall in the high-math-anxious group compared with the low-math-anxious group. The findings show a particular difficulty employing working memory in math-related contexts in high-math-anxious participants. Theories that can provide reasonable interpretations for these findings and interventions that can reduce anxiety-induced worrying intrusive thoughts or improve working memory capacity for math anxiety are discussed.

  15. Role of Prefrontal Persistent Activity in Working Memory

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    Riley, Mitchell R.; Constantinidis, Christos

    2016-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex is activated during working memory, as evidenced by fMRI results in human studies and neurophysiological recordings in animal models. Persistent activity during the delay period of working memory tasks, after the offset of stimuli that subjects are required to remember, has traditionally been thought of as the neural correlate of working memory. In the last few years several findings have cast doubt on the role of this activity. By some accounts, activity in other brain areas, such as the primary visual and posterior parietal cortex, is a better predictor of information maintained in visual working memory and working memory performance; dynamic patterns of activity may convey information without requiring persistent activity at all; and prefrontal neurons may be ill-suited to represent non-spatial information about the features and identity of remembered stimuli. Alternative interpretations about the role of the prefrontal cortex have thus been suggested, such as that it provides a top-down control of information represented in other brain areas, rather than maintaining a working memory trace itself. Here we review evidence for and against the role of prefrontal persistent activity, with a focus on visual neurophysiology. We show that persistent activity predicts behavioral parameters precisely in working memory tasks. We illustrate that prefrontal cortex represents features of stimuli other than their spatial location, and that this information is largely absent from early cortical areas during working memory. We examine memory models not dependent on persistent activity, and conclude that each of those models could mediate only a limited range of memory-dependent behaviors. We review activity decoded from brain areas other than the prefrontal cortex during working memory and demonstrate that these areas alone cannot mediate working memory maintenance, particularly in the presence of distractors. We finally discuss the discrepancy between

  16. Working memory and attentional bias on reinforcing efficacy of food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Katelyn A; Epstein, Leonard H

    2017-09-01

    Reinforcing efficacy of food, or the relationship between food prices and purchasing, is related to obesity status and energy intake in adults. Determining how to allocate resources for food is a decision making process influenced by executive functions. Attention to appetitive cues, as well as working memory capacity, or the ability to flexibly control attention while mentally retaining information, may be important executive functions involved in food purchasing decisions. In two studies, we examined how attention bias to food and working memory capacity are related to reinforcing efficacy of both high energy-dense and low energy-dense foods. The first study examined 48 women of varying body mass index (BMI) and found that the relationship between attentional processes and reinforcing efficacy was moderated by working memory capacity. Those who avoid food cues and had high working memory capacity had the lowest reinforcing efficacy, as compared to those with low working memory capacity. Study 2 systematically replicated the methods of study 1 with assessment of maintained attention in a sample of 48 overweight/obese adults. Results showed the relationship between maintained attention to food cues and reinforcing efficacy was moderated by working memory capacity. Those with a maintained attention to food and high working memory capacity had higher reinforcing efficacy than low working memory capacity individuals. These studies suggest working memory capacity moderated the relationship between different aspects of attention and food reinforcement. Understanding how decision making process are involved in reinforcing efficacy may help to identify future intervention targets. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Children's auditory working memory performance in degraded listening conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osman, Homira; Sullivan, Jessica R

    2014-08-01

    The objectives of this study were to determine (a) whether school-age children with typical hearing demonstrate poorer auditory working memory performance in multitalker babble at degraded signal-to-noise ratios than in quiet; and (b) whether the amount of cognitive demand of the task contributed to differences in per