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Sample records for working memory processes

  1. Effects of chewing in working memory processing.

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    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.

  2. Supramodal parametric working memory processing in humans.

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    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. Working Memory Capacity as a Dynamic Process

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    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

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  6. (Working) Memory and L2 Acquisition and Processing

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    Rankin, Tom

    2017-01-01

    This review evaluates two recent anthologies that survey research at the intersection of cognitive psychological investigations of (working) memory and issues in second language (L2), and bilingual processing and acquisition. The volumes cover similar ground by outlining the theoretical underpinnings of models of (working) memory as well as…

  7. Neural Correlates of Sublexical Processing in Phonological Working Memory

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    McGettigan, Carolyn; Warren, Jane E.; Eisner, Frank; Marshall, Chloe R.; Shanmugalingam, Pradheep; Scott, Sophie K.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated links between working memory and speech processing systems. We used delayed pseudoword repetition in fMRI to investigate the neural correlates of sublexical structure in phonological working memory (pWM). We orthogonally varied the number of syllables and consonant clusters in auditory pseudowords and measured the neural…

  8. 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.

  9. Working Memory Regulates Trait Anxiety-Related Threat Processing Biases

    OpenAIRE

    Booth, Rob; Mackintosh, Bundy; Sharma, Dinkar

    2016-01-01

    High trait anxious individuals tend to show biased processing of threat. Correlational evidence suggests that executive control could be used to regulate such threat-processing. On this basis, we hypothesised that trait anxiety-related cognitive biases regarding threat should be exaggerated when executive control is experimentally impaired by loading working memory. In Study 1, 68 undergraduates read ambiguous vignettes under high and low working memory load; later, their interpretations of t...

  10. Working memory regulates trait anxiety-related threat processing biases.

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    Booth, Robert W; Mackintosh, Bundy; Sharma, Dinkar

    2017-06-01

    High trait anxious individuals tend to show biased processing of threat. Correlational evidence suggests that executive control could be used to regulate such threat-processing. On this basis, we hypothesized that trait anxiety-related cognitive biases regarding threat should be exaggerated when executive control is experimentally impaired by loading working memory. In Study 1, 68 undergraduates read ambiguous vignettes under high and low working memory load; later, their interpretations of these vignettes were assessed via a recognition test. Trait anxiety predicted biased interpretation of social threat vignettes under high working memory load, but not under low working memory load. In Study 2, 53 undergraduates completed a dot probe task with fear-conditioned Japanese characters serving as threat stimuli. Trait anxiety predicted attentional bias to the threat stimuli but, again, this only occurred under high working memory load. Interestingly however, actual eye movements toward the threat stimuli were only associated with state anxiety, and this was not moderated by working memory load, suggesting that executive control regulates biased threat-processing downstream of initial input processes such as orienting. These results suggest that cognitive loads can exacerbate trait anxiety-related cognitive biases, and therefore represent a useful tool for assessing cognitive biases in future research. More importantly, since biased threat-processing has been implicated in the etiology and maintenance of anxiety, poor executive control may be a risk factor for anxiety disorders. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Working memory training improves reading processes in typically developing children.

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    Loosli, Sandra V; Buschkuehl, Martin; Perrig, Walter J; Jaeggi, Susanne M

    2012-01-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate whether a brief cognitive training intervention results in a specific performance increase in the trained task, and whether there are transfer effects to other nontrained measures. A computerized, adaptive working memory intervention was conducted with 9- to 11-year-old typically developing children. The children considerably improved their performance in the trained working memory task. Additionally, compared to a matched control group, the experimental group significantly enhanced their reading performance after training, providing further evidence for shared processes between working memory and reading.

  12. Attention and Visuospatial Working Memory Share the Same Processing Resources

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    Jing eFeng

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Attention and visuospatial working memory (VWM share very similar characteristics; both have the same upper bound of about four items in capacity and they recruit overlapping brain regions. We examined whether both attention and visuospatial working memory share the same processing resources using a novel dual-task-costs approach based on a load-varying dual-task technique. With sufficiently large loads on attention and VWM, considerable interference between the two processes was observed. A further load increase on either process produced reciprocal increases in interference on both processes, indicating that attention and VWM share common resources. More critically, comparison among four experiments on the reciprocal interference effects, as measured by the dual-task costs, demonstrates no significant contribution from additional processing other than the shared processes. These results support the notion that attention and VWM share the same processing resources.

  13. Working memory influences processing speed and reading fluency in ADHD.

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    Jacobson, Lisa A; Ryan, Matthew; Martin, Rebecca B; Ewen, Joshua; Mostofsky, Stewart H; Denckla, Martha B; Mahone, E Mark

    2011-01-01

    Processing-speed deficits affect reading efficiency, even among individuals who recognize and decode words accurately. Children with ADHD who decode words accurately can still have inefficient reading fluency, leading to a bottleneck in other cognitive processes. This "slowing" in ADHD is associated with deficits in fundamental components of executive function underlying processing speed, including response selection. The purpose of the present study was to deconstruct processing speed in order to determine which components of executive control best explain the "processing" speed deficits related to reading fluency in ADHD. Participants (41 ADHD, 21 controls), ages 9-14 years, screened for language disorders, word reading deficits, and psychiatric disorders, were administered measures of copying speed, processing speed, reading fluency, working memory, reaction time, inhibition, and auditory attention span. Compared to controls, children with ADHD showed reduced oral and silent reading fluency and reduced processing speed-driven primarily by deficits on WISC-IV Coding. In contrast, groups did not differ on copying speed. After controlling for copying speed, sex, severity of ADHD-related symptomatology, and GAI, slowed "processing" speed (i.e., Coding) was significantly associated with verbal span and measures of working memory but not with measures of response control/inhibition, lexical retrieval speed, reaction time, or intrasubject variability. Further, "processing" speed (i.e., Coding, residualized for copying speed) and working memory were significant predictors of oral reading fluency. Abnormalities in working memory and response selection (which are frontally mediated and enter into the output side of processing speed) may play an important role in deficits in reading fluency in ADHD, potentially more than posteriorally mediated problems with orienting of attention or perceiving the stimulus.

  14. Working Memory in Aphasia: Considering Discourse Processing and Treatment Implications.

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    Henderson, Amy; Kim, Hana; Kintz, Stephen; Frisco, Nicole; Wright, Heather Harris

    2017-02-01

    Evidence suggests that persons with aphasia (PWAs) present with working memory impairments that affect a variety of language tasks. Most of these studies have focused on the phonological loop component of working memory and little attention has been paid to the episodic buffer component. The episodic buffer, as a limited capacity, multimodal system that binds and integrates information from the phonological loop, visuospatial sketchpad, and long-term memory would likely be involved in discourse processing. The purposes of this article were to (1) review discourse level deficits associated with aphasia, (2) describe how a deficit at the level of the episodic buffer could cause such deficits, (3) to review discourse treatment approaches for PWAs, and (4) present preliminary results from a novel discourse treatment study for PWAs. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

  15. Differential Effects of Alcohol Consumption Behaviours on Working Memory Processes

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    Shaunak Sanjay Deshpande

    2015-01-01

    Alcohol exposure in a clinical population impairs working memory. In order to establish the effects of alcohol on working memory in typical young adults, this study looked at their alcohol consumption behaviours and how they predict working memory. A battery of cognitive tasks and a recreational drug use questionnaire assessed working memory and alcohol consumption of 100 participants. The results revealed that alcohol abstinence predicted set-shifting, verbal executive, phonological loop, sp...

  16. Working memory.

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    Baddeley, A

    1992-01-31

    The term working memory refers to a brain system that provides temporary storage and manipulation of the information necessary for such complex cognitive tasks as language comprehension, learning, and reasoning. This definition has evolved from the concept of a unitary short-term memory system. Working memory has been found to require the simultaneous storage and processing of information. It can be divided into the following three subcomponents: (i) the central executive, which is assumed to be an attentional-controlling system, is important in skills such as chess playing and is particularly susceptible to the effects of Alzheimer's disease; and two slave systems, namely (ii) the visuospatial sketch pad, which manipulates visual images and (iii) the phonological loop, which stores and rehearses speech-based information and is necessary for the acquisition of both native and second-language vocabulary.

  17. Effects of modafinil on working memory processes in humans.

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    Müller, Ulrich; Steffenhagen, Nikolai; Regenthal, Ralf; Bublak, Peter

    2004-12-01

    Modafinil is a well-tolerated psychostimulant drug with low addictive potential that is used to treat patients with narcolepsy or attention deficit disorders and to enhance vigilance in sleep-deprived military personal. So far, understanding of the cognitive enhancing effects of modafinil and the relevant neurobiological mechanisms are incomplete. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of modafinil on working memory processes in humans and how they are related to noradrenergic stimulation of the prefrontal cortex. Sixteen healthy volunteers (aged 20-29 years) received either modafinil 200 mg or placebo using a double blind crossover design. Two computerized working memory tasks were administered, a numeric manipulation task that requires short-term maintenance of digit-sequences and different degrees of manipulation as well as delayed matching task that assesses maintenance of visuo-spatial information over varying delay lengths. The battery was supplemented by standardized paper pencil tasks of attentional functions. Modafinil significantly reduced error rates in the long delay condition of the visuo-spatial task and in the manipulation conditions, but not in the maintenance condition of the numeric task. Analyses of reaction times showed no speed-accuracy trade-off. Attentional control tasks (letter cancellation, trail-making, catch trials) were not affected by modafinil. In healthy volunteers without sleep deprivation modafinil has subtle stimulating effects on maintenance and manipulation processes in relatively difficult and monotonous working memory tasks, especially in lower performing subjects. Overlapping attentional and working memory processes have to be considered when studying the noradrenergic modulation of the prefrontal cortex.

  18. Differential Effects of Alcohol Consumption Behaviours on Working Memory Processes

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    Shaunak Sanjay Deshpande

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Alcohol exposure in a clinical population impairs working memory. In order to establish the effects of alcohol on working memory in typical young adults, this study looked at their alcohol consumption behaviours and how they predict working memory. A battery of cognitive tasks and a recreational drug use questionnaire assessed working memory and alcohol consumption of 100 participants. The results revealed that alcohol abstinence predicted set-shifting, verbal executive, phonological loop, spatial and visual working memory performance, which is consistent with current literature. I surmise that the recent use of alcohol plays a role in working memory impairments and offer novel findings that the length of abstinence plays a role in the cognitive recovery of young adults.

  19. Working Memory, Processing Speed, and Executive Memory Contributions to Computer-Assisted Second Language Learning

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    Nelson, Keith E.; Barlieb, Aran; Khan, Kiren; Vance Trup, Elisabeth M; Heimann, Mikael; Tjus, Tomas; Rudner, Mary; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2012-01-01

    How individual differences in information processing affect second language (L2) learning has been unclear in prior research. Adults lacking prior skill in Swedish were pretested for working memory, processing speed, and executive memory capacity. Participants then received 6 computer-based instructional sessions with pictorial animations of Swedish sentences, with a built-in experimental contrast between some lessons at high and some at low rates of presentation. The faster rate carried grea...

  20. Aging and prospective memory: the role of working memory and monitoring processes.

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    Bisiacchi, Patrizia S; Tarantino, Vincenza; Ciccola, Alessia

    2008-12-01

    Remembering to execute an earlier planned action is essential in everyday life, and is a prerequisite for independent living in old age. The purpose of the present study was to determine the influence of age in performing a prospective memory (PM) task and to analyze the differential contribution of working memory and attentional monitoring demands. In Experiment 1, a group of young and two groups of old adults were assigned to one of two low-demanding conditions: a picture-naming task (only-Naming) and a picture-naming plus a PM task (Naming+PM). In Experiment 2, a group of young and two groups of old adults performed one of two high-demanding conditions, in which working memory and attentional monitoring processes were examined, using a listening span-like task and a 1-back task within the PM paradigm of Experiment 1. Prospective memory performance declined with age even in the low-demanding condition (Experiment 1). Young participants showed PM failures only when the 1-back task was added to the low-demanding condition. Older participants exhibited a marked decline, particularly in the working memory load condition. These results suggest that even low-demanding prospective memory tasks are resource-consuming in old age, and that working memory efficiency, affected by the aging process, plays a crucial role in the successful accomplishment of PM actions.

  1. Working memory: what relevance does it have in learning process and in language processing ?

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    Lidiomar José Mascarello

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available This work consists of a systematic review of the literature on working memory.  Researches, including the ones developed by George Miller (1956 and Paul Carrillo-Mora (2010 have shown that working memory is involved in remembering visual and spatial information, as well as in cognitive activities and in planning strategies.  In the present article, we first examine some important facts in the history of research about working memory. After that, we analyze works published from 2001 to 2011 and available at the “Scientific Electronic Library Online”. During this process, we found studies about different aspects of working memory, but those related to language are usually focused on phonological aspects. There are some works about the relation between working memory and general aspects of intelligence, while others are about difficulties in learning and problems related to memory. We still do not have conclusive answers, in other words, the relation between problems in learning and working memory capacity is not widely accepted; however, there is a consensus that the amount of linguistic information we can keep in our working memory is influenced by spelling time and semantic similarity of the terms used. The studies analyzed here point to the same conclusions.

  2. I. WORKING MEMORY CAPACITY IN CONTEXT: MODELING DYNAMIC PROCESSES OF BEHAVIOR, MEMORY, AND DEVELOPMENT.

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    Simmering, Vanessa R

    2016-09-01

    Working memory is a vital cognitive skill that underlies a broad range of behaviors. Higher cognitive functions are reliably predicted by working memory measures from two domains: children's performance on complex span tasks, and infants' performance in looking paradigms. Despite the similar predictive power across these research areas, theories of working memory development have not connected these different task types and developmental periods. The current project takes a first step toward bridging this gap by presenting a process-oriented theory, focusing on two tasks designed to assess visual working memory capacity in infants (the change-preference task) versus children and adults (the change detection task). Previous studies have shown inconsistent results, with capacity estimates increasing from one to four items during infancy, but only two to three items during early childhood. A probable source of this discrepancy is the different task structures used with each age group, but prior theories were not sufficiently specific to explain how performance relates across tasks. The current theory focuses on cognitive dynamics, that is, how memory representations are formed, maintained, and used within specific task contexts over development. This theory was formalized in a computational model to generate three predictions: 1) capacity estimates in the change-preference task should continue to increase beyond infancy; 2) capacity estimates should be higher in the change-preference versus change detection task when tested within individuals; and 3) performance should correlate across tasks because both rely on the same underlying memory system. I also tested a fourth prediction, that development across tasks could be explained through increasing real-time stability, realized computationally as strengthening connectivity within the model. Results confirmed these predictions, supporting the cognitive dynamics account of performance and developmental changes in real

  3. The Integration of Realistic Episodic Memories Relies on Different Working Memory Processes: Evidence from Virtual Navigation

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    Gaën Plancher

    2018-01-01

    central elements. By contrast, the prevention of visuo-spatial maintenance interfered both with the encoding of the temporal context and with the binding. These results suggest that the integration of realistic episodic memories relies on different working memory processes that depend on the nature of the traces.

  4. Impaired retrieval processes evident during visual working memory in schizophrenia

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    Peter A. Lynn

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Prominent working memory (WM deficits have been observed in people with schizophrenia (PSZ across multiple sensory modalities, including the visuospatial realm. Electrophysiological abnormalities noted during early visual processing as well as later cognitive functions in PSZ may underlie deficiencies in WM ability, though the mechanisms linking behavior to neural responses are not well understood. WM dysfunction has also been observed in biological relatives of PSZ (REL and therefore may be a manifestation of genetic liability for the disorder. We administered a delayed response visuospatial WM task to 23 PSZ, 30 of their REL, and 37 healthy controls (CTRL to better understand the contributions of neural abnormalities to WM performance deficits associated with schizophrenia. PSZ performed more poorly on the WM task and failed to effectively process distractor stimuli as well as CTRL and REL. N1 electrophysiological responses to probes during retrieval differentiated the type and locations of stimuli presented during encoding in CTRL. Retrieval N1 responses in PSZ, however, failed to do so, while retrieval responses in REL showed more pronounced differentiation of stimulus features during encoding. Furthermore, neural responses during retrieval predicted behavioral performance in PSZ and REL, but not CTRL. These results suggest that retrieval processes are particularly important to efficient visuospatial WM function in PSZ and REL, and support further investigation of WM retrieval as a potential target for improving overall WM function through clinical intervention.

  5. Working Memory Strategies during Rational Number Magnitude Processing

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    Hurst, Michelle; Cordes, Sara

    2017-01-01

    Rational number understanding is a critical building block for success in more advanced mathematics; however, how rational number magnitudes are conceptualized is not fully understood. In the current study, we used a dual-task working memory (WM) interference paradigm to investigate the dominant type of strategy (i.e., requiring verbal WM…

  6. Visual Information Can Hinder Working Memory Processing of Speech

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    Mishra, Sushmit; Lunner, Thomas; Stenfelt, Stefan; Ronnberg, Jerker; Rudner, Mary

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the new Cognitive Spare Capacity Test (CSCT), which measures aspects of working memory capacity for heard speech in the audiovisual and auditory-only modalities of presentation. Method: In Experiment 1, 20 young adults with normal hearing performed the CSCT and an independent battery of…

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

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    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.

  8. Prefrontal inhibition of threat processing protects working memory from interference.

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    Robert James Clarke

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Bottom-up processes can interrupt ongoing cognitive processing in order to adaptively respond to emotional stimuli of high potential significance, such as those that threaten wellbeing. However it is vital that this interference can be modulated in certain contexts to focus on current tasks. Deficits in the ability to maintain the appropriate balance between cognitive and emotional demands can severely impact on day-to-day activities. This fMRI study examined this interaction between threat processing and cognition; 18 adult participants performed a visuospatial working memory (WM task with two load conditions, in the presence and absence of anxiety induction by threat of electric shock. Threat of shock interfered with performance in the low cognitive load condition; however interference was eradicated under high load, consistent with engagement of emotion regulation mechanisms. Under low load the amygdala showed significant activation to threat of shock that was modulated by high cognitive load. A directed top-down control contrast identified two regions associated with top-down control; ventrolateral PFC and dorsal ACC. Dynamic causal modelling provided further evidence that under high cognitive load, top-down inhibition is exerted on the amygdala and its outputs to prefrontal regions. Additionally, we hypothesised that individual differences in a separate, non-emotional top-down control task would predict the recruitment of dorsal ACC and ventrolateral PFC during top-down control of threat. Consistent with this, performance on a separate dichotic listening task predicted dorsal ACC and ventrolateral PFC activation during high WM load under threat of shock, though activation in these regions did not directly correlate with WM performance. Together, the findings suggest that under high cognitive load and threat, top-down control is exerted by dACC and vlPFC to inhibit threat processing, thus enabling WM performance without threat

  9. Pornographic picture processing interferes with working memory performance.

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    Laier, Christian; Schulte, Frank P; Brand, Matthias

    2013-01-01

    Some individuals report problems during and after Internet sex engagement, such as missing sleep and forgetting appointments, which are associated with negative life consequences. One mechanism potentially leading to these kinds of problems is that sexual arousal during Internet sex might interfere with working memory (WM) capacity, resulting in a neglect of relevant environmental information and therefore disadvantageous decision making. In this study, 28 healthy individuals performed 4 experimental manipulations of a pictorial 4-back WM task with neutral, negative, positive, or pornographic stimuli. Participants also rated 100 pornographic pictures with respect to sexual arousal and indicated masturbation urges previous to and following pornographic picture presentation. Results revealed worse WM performance in the pornographic picture condition of the 4-back task compared with the three remaining picture conditions. Furthermore, hierarchical regression analysis indicated an explanation of variance of the sensitivity in the pornographic picture condition by the subjective rating of the pornographic pictures as well as by a moderation effect of masturbation urges. Results contribute to the view that indicators of sexual arousal due to pornographic picture processing interfere with WM performance. Findings are discussed with respect to Internet sex addiction because WM interference by addiction-related cues is well known from substance dependencies.

  10. Similarities and Differences between Working Memory and Long-Term Memory: Evidence from the Levels-of-Processing Span Task

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    Rose, Nathan S.; Myerson, Joel; Roediger, Henry L., III; Hale, Sandra

    2010-01-01

    Two experiments compared the effects of depth of processing on working memory (WM) and long-term memory (LTM) using a levels-of-processing (LOP) span task, a newly developed WM span procedure that involves processing to-be-remembered words based on their visual, phonological, or semantic characteristics. Depth of processing had minimal effect on…

  11. The Influence of Levels of Processing on Recall from Working Memory and Delayed Recall Tasks

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    Loaiza, Vanessa M.; McCabe, David P.; Youngblood, Jessie L.; Rose, Nathan S.; Myerson, Joel

    2011-01-01

    Recent research in working memory has highlighted the similarities involved in retrieval from complex span tasks and episodic memory tasks, suggesting that these tasks are influenced by similar memory processes. In the present article, the authors manipulated the level of processing engaged when studying to-be-remembered words during a reading…

  12. Reading Comprehension and Working Memory's Executive Processes: An Intervention Study in Primary School Students

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    Garcia-Madruga, Juan A.; Elosua, Maria Rosa; Gil, Laura; Gomez-Veiga, Isabel; Vila, Jose Oscar; Orjales, Isabel; Contreras, Antonio; Rodriguez, Raquel; Melero, Maria Angeles; Duque, Gonzalo

    2013-01-01

    Reading comprehension is a highly demanding task that involves the simultaneous process of extracting and constructing meaning in which working memory's executive processes play a crucial role. In this article, a training program on working memory's executive processes to improve reading comprehension is presented and empirically tested in two…

  13. Working Memory and Arithmetic Calculation in Children: The Contributory Roles of Processing Speed, Short-Term Memory, and Reading

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Derek H.

    2008-01-01

    The cognitive underpinnings of arithmetic calculation in children are noted to involve working memory; however, cognitive processes related to arithmetic calculation and working memory suggest that this relationship is more complex than stated previously. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the relative contributions of processing…

  14. Verbal Working Memory in Older Adults: The Roles of Phonological Capacities and Processing Speed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nittrouer, Susan; Lowenstein, Joanna H.; Wucinich, Taylor; Moberly, Aaron C.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined the potential roles of phonological sensitivity and processing speed in age-related declines of verbal working memory. Method: Twenty younger and 25 older adults with age-normal hearing participated. Two measures of verbal working memory were collected: digit span and serial recall of words. Processing speed was…

  15. Cognitive Risk Factors for Specific Learning Disorder: Processing Speed, Temporal Processing, and Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moll, Kristina; Göbel, Silke M; Gooch, Debbie; Landerl, Karin; Snowling, Margaret J

    2016-01-01

    High comorbidity rates between reading disorder (RD) and mathematics disorder (MD) indicate that, although the cognitive core deficits underlying these disorders are distinct, additional domain-general risk factors might be shared between the disorders. Three domain-general cognitive abilities were investigated in children with RD and MD: processing speed, temporal processing, and working memory. Since attention problems frequently co-occur with learning disorders, the study examined whether these three factors, which are known to be associated with attention problems, account for the comorbidity between these disorders. The sample comprised 99 primary school children in four groups: children with RD, children with MD, children with both disorders (RD+MD), and typically developing children (TD controls). Measures of processing speed, temporal processing, and memory were analyzed in a series of ANCOVAs including attention ratings as covariate. All three risk factors were associated with poor attention. After controlling for attention, associations with RD and MD differed: Although deficits in verbal memory were associated with both RD and MD, reduced processing speed was related to RD, but not MD; and the association with RD was restricted to processing speed for familiar nameable symbols. In contrast, impairments in temporal processing and visuospatial memory were associated with MD, but not RD. © Hammill Institute on Disabilities 2014.

  16. Neural mechanisms of order information processing in working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Dolenc

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The ability to encode and maintain the exact order of short sequences of stimuli or events is often crucial to our ability for effective high-order planning. However, it is not yet clear which neural mechanisms underpin this process. Several studies suggest that in comparison with item recognition temporal order coding activates prefrontal and parietal brain regions. Results of various studies tend to favour the hypothesis that the order of the stimuli is represented and encoded on several stages, from primacy and recency estimates to the exact position of the item in a sequence. Different brain regions play a different role in this process. Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex has a more general role in attention, while the premotor cortex is more involved in the process of information grouping. Parietal lobe and hippocampus also play a significant role in order processing as they enable the representation of distance. Moreover, order maintenance is associated with the existence of neural oscillators that operate at different frequencies. Electrophysiological studies revealed that theta and alpha oscillations play an important role in the maintenance of temporal order information. Those EEG oscillations are differentially associated with processes that support the maintenance of order information and item recognition. Various studies suggest a link between prefrontal areas and memory for temporal order, implying that EEG neural oscillations in the prefrontal cortex may play a role in the maintenance of information on temporal order.

  17. Contribution of underlying processes to improved visuospatial working memory associated with physical activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qingchun Ji

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Background Working memory is critical for various cognitive processes and can be separated into two stages: short-term memory storage and manipulation processing. Although previous studies have demonstrated that increased physical activity (PA improves working memory and that males outperform females on visuospatial working memory tasks, few studies have determined the contribution of the two underlying stages to the visuospatial working memory improvement associated with PA. Thus, the aims of the present study were to verify the relationship between physical activity and visuospatial working memory, determine whether one or both stages were affected by PA, and investigate any sex differences. Methods A total of 56 undergraduate students were recruited for this study. Their scores on the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ were used to separate them into either a lower PA (n = 26; IPAQ score ≤3,000 metabolic equivalent [MET]-min/week or higher PA (n = 30; IPAQ score >3,000 MET-min/week group. Participants were required to complete three tasks: a visuospatial working memory task, a task that examines the short-term memory storage stage, and a mental rotation task that examines the active manipulation stage. Results Participants in the higher PA group maintained similar accuracy but displayed significantly faster reaction times (RT than those in the lower PA group on the visuospatial working memory and manipulation tasks. By contrast, no difference was observed between groups on the short-term memory storage task. In addition, no effects of sex were detected. Discussion Our results confirm that PA was positively to visuospatial working memory and that this positive relationship was associated with more rapid cognitive processing during the manipulation stage, with little or no relationship between PA and the memory storage stage of visuospatial working memory.

  18. Effects of Children's Working Memory Capacity and Processing Speed on Their Sentence Imitation Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poll, Gerard H.; Miller, Carol A.; Mainela-Arnold, Elina; Adams, Katharine Donnelly; Misra, Maya; Park, Ji Sook

    2013-01-01

    Background: More limited working memory capacity and slower processing for language and cognitive tasks are characteristics of many children with language difficulties. Individual differences in processing speed have not

  19. Impact of Noise and Working Memory on Speech Processing in Adults with and without ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalek, Anne M. P.

    2012-01-01

    Auditory processing of speech is influenced by internal (i.e., attention, working memory) and external factors (i.e., background noise, visual information). This study examined the interplay among these factors in individuals with and without ADHD. All participants completed a listening in noise task, two working memory capacity tasks, and two…

  20. Children's Verbal Working Memory: Role of Processing Complexity in Predicting Spoken Sentence Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magimairaj, Beula M.; Montgomery, James W.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: This study investigated the role of processing complexity of verbal working memory tasks in predicting spoken sentence comprehension in typically developing children. Of interest was whether simple and more complex working memory tasks have similar or different power in predicting sentence comprehension. Method: Sixty-five children (6- to…

  1. Spatial working memory and spatial attention rely on common neural processes in the intraparietal sulcus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silk, Timothy J; Bellgrove, Mark A; Wrafter, Pia; Mattingley, Jason B; Cunnington, Ross

    2010-11-01

    Our ability to remember locations in space (spatial working memory) and our ability to direct attention to those locations (spatial attention) are two fundamental and closely related cognitive processes. A growing body of behavioural evidence suggests that spatial working memory and spatial attention share common resources, while neuroimaging studies show some overlap in the neural regions that mediate these two cognitive functions. The current study used fMRI to directly examine the extent to which spatial working memory and spatial attention rely on common underlying neural mechanisms. Twenty healthy participants underwent functional MRI while performing a dual task of spatial working memory incorporating a visual search task during the working memory retention interval. Working memory and visual search task loads were parametrically modulated. A wide network of prefrontal, premotor, and parietal regions showed increasing activity with increased spatial working memory load. Of these areas, part of the right supramarginal gyrus, lying along the intraparietal sulcus, showed a significant interaction such that the neural activity associated with spatial working memory load was significantly attenuated as visual search load in the dual task was increased. This interaction suggests that this part of the supramarginal gyrus, along the intraparietal sulcus, is critical for mediating both spatial working memory and shifts in spatial attention. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Working Memory and Hearing Aid Processing: Literature Findings, Future Directions, and Clinical Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Pamela; Arehart, Kathryn; Neher, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Working memory-the ability to process and store information-has been identified as an important aspect of speech perception in difficult listening environments. Working memory can be envisioned as a limited-capacity system which is engaged when an input signal cannot be readily matched to a stored representation or template. This "mismatch" is expected to occur more frequently when the signal is degraded. Because working memory capacity varies among individuals, those with smaller capacity are expected to demonstrate poorer speech understanding when speech is degraded, such as in background noise. However, it is less clear whether (and how) working memory should influence practical decisions, such as hearing treatment. Here, we consider the relationship between working memory capacity and response to specific hearing aid processing strategies. Three types of signal processing are considered, each of which will alter the acoustic signal: fast-acting wide-dynamic range compression, which smooths the amplitude envelope of the input signal; digital noise reduction, which may inadvertently remove speech signal components as it suppresses noise; and frequency compression, which alters the relationship between spectral peaks. For fast-acting wide-dynamic range compression, a growing body of data suggests that individuals with smaller working memory capacity may be more susceptible to such signal alterations, and may receive greater amplification benefit with "low alteration" processing. While the evidence for a relationship between wide-dynamic range compression and working memory appears robust, the effects of working memory on perceptual response to other forms of hearing aid signal processing are less clear cut. We conclude our review with a discussion of the opportunities (and challenges) in translating information on individual working memory into clinical treatment, including clinically feasible measures of working memory.

  3. Disorders of working memory and selected cognitive processes inpatients treated for paranoid schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damian Giętkowski

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Already since the times of Baddeley and Hitch the dorsolateral part of the frontal lobe was regarded as the function‑ al centre of the working memory. Working memory disorders are, on the other hand, one of the basic and consoli‑ dated disorders in the course of paranoid schizophrenia. The concept of neurodevelopmental schizophrenia com‑ bines these elements and associates the illness with the changes occurring in the brain in the prenatal period. The efficiency of the working memory system, which acts as a buffer manipulating with the possessed and inflowing information, influences the quality of other cognitive processes, such as long‑term memory, short‑term memory, con‑ centration and thinking. A study was performed on two groups: one experimental consisting of 31 people suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and one control group of 31 healthy people. In both groups a replica of Wisconsin Card Sorting Task was used in order to measure the efficiency of the working memory and selected tests from WAIS‑R (PL: the Polish adaptation of Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale to assess the functioning of concentration, memory and thinking. The results of the study showed that in the experimental group the efficiency of the working memory is very low and that the illness affects the performance of concentration, memory and thinking. Moreover the tests proved that the working memory disorder increases with time.

  4. Influence of limiting working memory resources on contextual facilitation in language processing

    OpenAIRE

    Stewart, Oliver William Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Language processing is a complex task requiring the integration of many different streams of information. Theorists have considered that working memory plays an important role in language processing and that a reduction in available working memory resources will reduce the efficacy of the system. In debate, however, is whether or not there exists a single pool of resources from which all language processes draw, or if the resource pool is functionally fractionated into modular ...

  5. Effects of dopamine-related gene-gene interactions on working memory component processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stelzel, Christine; Basten, Ulrike; Montag, Christian; Reuter, Martin; Fiebach, Christian J

    2009-03-01

    Dopamine modulates complex cognitive functions like working memory and cognitive control. It is widely accepted that an optimal level of prefrontal dopamine supports working memory performance. In the present study we used a molecular genetic approach to test whether the optimal activity of the dopamine system for different component processes of working memory is additionally related to the availability of dopamine D2 receptors. We sought evidence for this assumption by investigating the interaction effect (epistasis) of variations in two dopaminergic candidate genes: the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism, which has been shown to influence prefrontal dopamine concentration, and the DRD2/ANKK1-Taq-Ia polymorphism, which has been related to the density of D2 receptors. Our results show that COMT effects on working memory performance are modulated by the DRD2/ANKK1-TAQ-Ia polymorphism and the specific working memory component process under investigation. Val-participants--supposedly characterized by increased prefrontal dopamine concentrations--outperformed Val+ participants in the manipulation of working memory contents, but only when D2 receptor density could be considered to be high. No such effect was present for passive maintenance of working memory contents or for maintenance in the face of distracting information. This beneficial effect of a balance between prefrontal dopamine availability and D2 receptor density reveals the importance of considering epistasis effects and different working memory subprocesses in genetic association studies.

  6. Effects of noise and working memory capacity on memory processing of speech for hearing-aid users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Elaine Hoi Ning; Rudner, Mary; Lunner, Thomas; Pedersen, Michael Syskind; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2013-07-01

    It has been shown that noise reduction algorithms can reduce the negative effects of noise on memory processing in persons with normal hearing. The objective of the present study was to investigate whether a similar effect can be obtained for persons with hearing impairment and whether such an effect is dependent on individual differences in working memory capacity. A sentence-final word identification and recall (SWIR) test was conducted in two noise backgrounds with and without noise reduction as well as in quiet. Working memory capacity was measured using a reading span (RS) test. Twenty-six experienced hearing-aid users with moderate to moderately severe sensorineural hearing loss. Noise impaired recall performance. Competing speech disrupted memory performance more than speech-shaped noise. For late list items the disruptive effect of the competing speech background was virtually cancelled out by noise reduction for persons with high working memory capacity. Noise reduction can reduce the adverse effect of noise on memory for speech for persons with good working memory capacity. We argue that the mechanism behind this is faster word identification that enhances encoding into working memory.

  7. Working memory and hearing aid processing: Literature findings, future directions, and clinical applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela eSouza

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Working memory—the ability to process and store information—has been identified as an important aspect of speech perception in difficult listening environments. Working memory can be envisioned as a limited-capacity system which is engaged when an input signal cannot be readily matched to a stored representation or template. This mismatch is expected to occur more frequently when the signal is degraded. Because working memory capacity varies among individuals, those with smaller capacity are expected to demonstrate poorer speech understanding when speech is degraded, such as in background noise. However, it is less clear whether (and how working memory should influence practical decisions, such as hearing treatment. Here, we consider the relationship between working memory capacity and response to specific hearing aid processing strategies. Three types of signal processing are considered, each of which will alter the acoustic signal: fast-acting wide-dynamic range compression, which smooths the amplitude envelope of the input signal; digital noise reduction, which may inadvertently remove speech signal components as it suppresses noise; and frequency compression, which alters the relationship between spectral peaks. For fast-acting wide-dynamic range compression, a growing body of data suggests that individuals with smaller working memory capacity may be more susceptible to such signal alterations, and may receive greater amplification benefit with low alteration processing. While the evidence for a relationship between wide-dynamic range compression and working memory appears robust, the effects of working memory on perceptual response to other forms of hearing aid signal processing are less clear cut. We conclude our review with a discussion of the opportunities (and challenges in translating information on individual working memory into clinical treatment, including clinically-feasible measures of working memory.

  8. Working Memory in Children With Neurocognitive Effects From Sickle Cell Disease: Contributions of the Central Executive and Processing Speed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kelsey E; Schatz, Jeffrey

    2016-01-01

    Children with sickle cell disease (SCD) are at risk for working memory deficits due to multiple disease processes. We assessed working memory abilities and related functions in 32 school-age children with SCD and 85 matched comparison children using Baddeley's working memory model as a framework. Children with SCD performed worse than controls for working memory, central executive function, and processing/rehearsal speed. Central executive function was found to mediate the relationship between SCD status and working memory, but processing speed did not. Cognitive remediation strategies that focus on central executive processes may be important for remediating working memory deficits in SCD.

  9. 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…

  10. Phonological working memory and auditory processing speed in children with specific language impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Haresabadi

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aim: Specific language impairment (SLI, one variety of developmental language disorder, has attracted much interest in recent decades. Much research has been conducted to discover why some children have a specific language impairment. So far, research has failed to identify a reason for this linguistic deficiency. Some researchers believe language disorder causes defects in phonological working memory and affects auditory processing speed. Therefore, this study reviews the results of research investigating these two factors in children with specific language impairment.Recent Findings: Studies have shown that children with specific language impairment face constraints in phonological working memory capacity. Memory deficit is one possible cause of linguistic disorder in children with specific language impairment. However, in these children, disorder in information processing speed is observed, especially regarding the auditory aspect.Conclusion: Much more research is required to adequately explain the relationship between phonological working memory and auditory processing speed with language. However, given the role of phonological working memory and auditory processing speed in language acquisition, a focus should be placed on phonological working memory capacity and auditory processing speed in the assessment and treatment of children with a specific language impairment.

  11. Sentence Processing in Lewy Body Spectrum Disorder: The Role of Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Rachel G.; McMillan, Corey T.; Chandrasekaran, Keerthi; Dreyfuss, Michael; Ash, Sharon; Avants, Brian; Cook, Philip; Moore, Peachie; Libon, David J.; Siderowf, Andrew; Grossman, Murray

    2012-01-01

    Prior work has related sentence processing to executive deficits in non-demented patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). We extended this investigation to patients with dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and PD dementia (PDD) by examining grammatical and working memory components of sentence processing in the full range of patients with Lewy body…

  12. The direction of word stress processing in German: evidence from a working memory paradigm

    OpenAIRE

    Frank eDomahs; Marion eGrande; Walter eHuber; Ulrike eDomahs

    2014-01-01

    There are contradicting assumptions and findings on the direction of word stress processing in German. To resolve this question, we asked participants to read tri-syllabic nonwords and stress ambiguous words aloud. Additionally, they also performed a working memory task (2-back task). In nonword reading, participants’ individual working memory capacity was positively correlated with assignment of main stress to the antepenultimate syllable, which is most distant to the word’s right edge, whil...

  13. Spatial working memory in children with high-functioning autism: intact configural processing but impaired capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Yuhong V; Capistrano, Christian G; Palm, Bryce E

    2014-02-01

    Visual attention and visual working memory exert severe capacity limitations on cognitive processing. Impairments in both functions may exacerbate the social and communication deficits seen in children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study characterizes spatial working memory and visual attention in school-age children with high-functioning autism. Children with ASD, and age, gender, and IQ-matched typically developing (TD) children performed 2 tasks: a spatial working memory task and an attentive tracking task. Compared with TD children, children with ASD showed a more pronounced deficit in the spatial working memory task than the attentive tracking task, even though the latter placed significant demands on sustained attention, location updating, and distractor inhibition. Because both groups of children were sensitive to configuration mismatches between the sample and test arrays, the spatial working memory deficit was not because of atypical organization of spatial working memory. These findings show that attention and working memory are dissociable, and that children with ASD show a specific deficit in buffering visual information across temporal discontinuity. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  14. Processing efficiency theory in children: working memory as a mediator between trait anxiety and academic performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owens, Matthew; Stevenson, Jim; Norgate, Roger; Hadwin, Julie A

    2008-10-01

    Working memory skills are positively associated with academic performance. In contrast, high levels of trait anxiety are linked with educational underachievement. Based on Eysenck and Calvo's (1992) processing efficiency theory (PET), the present study investigated whether associations between anxiety and educational achievement were mediated via poor working memory performance. Fifty children aged 11-12 years completed verbal (backwards digit span; tapping the phonological store/central executive) and spatial (Corsi blocks; tapping the visuospatial sketchpad/central executive) working memory tasks. Trait anxiety was measured using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children. Academic performance was assessed using school administered tests of reasoning (Cognitive Abilities Test) and attainment (Standard Assessment Tests). The results showed that the association between trait anxiety and academic performance was significantly mediated by verbal working memory for three of the six academic performance measures (math, quantitative and non-verbal reasoning). Spatial working memory did not significantly mediate the relationship between trait anxiety and academic performance. On average verbal working memory accounted for 51% of the association between trait anxiety and academic performance, while spatial working memory only accounted for 9%. The findings indicate that PET is a useful framework to assess the impact of children's anxiety on educational achievement.

  15. Effects of working memory contents and perceptual load on distractor processing: When a response-related distractor is held in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koshino, Hideya

    2017-01-01

    Working memory and attention are closely related. Recent research has shown that working memory can be viewed as internally directed attention. Working memory can affect attention in at least two ways. One is the effect of working memory load on attention, and the other is the effect of working memory contents on attention. In the present study, an interaction between working memory contents and perceptual load in distractor processing was investigated. Participants performed a perceptual load task in a standard form in one condition (Single task). In the other condition, a response-related distractor was maintained in working memory, rather than presented in the same stimulus display as a target (Dual task). For the Dual task condition, a significant compatibility effect was found under high perceptual load; however, there was no compatibility effect under low perceptual load. These results suggest that the way the contents of working memory affect visual search depends on perceptual load. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. The influence of Markov decision process structure on the possible strategic use of working memory and episodic memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric A Zilli

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Researchers use a variety of behavioral tasks to analyze the effect of biological manipulations on memory function. This research will benefit from a systematic mathematical method for analyzing memory demands in behavioral tasks. In the framework of reinforcement learning theory, these tasks can be mathematically described as partially-observable Markov decision processes. While a wealth of evidence collected over the past 15 years relates the basal ganglia to the reinforcement learning framework, only recently has much attention been paid to including psychological concepts such as working memory or episodic memory in these models. This paper presents an analysis that provides a quantitative description of memory states sufficient for correct choices at specific decision points. Using information from the mathematical structure of the task descriptions, we derive measures that indicate whether working memory (for one or more cues or episodic memory can provide strategically useful information to an agent. In particular, the analysis determines which observed states must be maintained in or retrieved from memory to perform these specific tasks. We demonstrate the analysis on three simplified tasks as well as eight more complex memory tasks drawn from the animal and human literature (two alternation tasks, two sequence disambiguation tasks, two non-matching tasks, the 2-back task, and the 1-2-AX task. The results of these analyses agree with results from quantitative simulations of the task reported in previous publications and provide simple indications of the memory demands of the tasks which can require far less computation than a full simulation of the task. This may provide a basis for a quantitative behavioral stoichiometry of memory tasks.

  17. Attention allocation: Relationships to general working memory or specific language processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, Lisa M D; Levee, Tyler; Olino, Thomas

    2015-11-01

    Attention allocation, updating working memory, and language processing are interdependent cognitive tasks related to the focused direction of limited resources, refreshing and substituting information in the current focus of attention, and receiving/sending verbal communication, respectively. The current study systematically examined the relationship among executive attention, working memory executive skills, and language abilities while adjusting for individual differences in short-term memory. School-age children completed a selective attention task requiring them to recall whether a presented shape was in the same place as a previous target shape shown in an array imposing a low or high working memory load. Results revealed a selective attention cost when working above but not within memory span capacity. Measures of general working memory were positively related to overall task performance, whereas language abilities were related to response time. In particular, higher language skills were associated with faster responses under low load conditions. These findings suggest that attentional control and storage demands have an additive impact on working memory resources but provide only limited evidence for a domain-general mechanism in language learning. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. The relation between working memory capacity and auditory lateralization in children with auditory processing disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moossavi, Abdollah; Mehrkian, Saiedeh; Lotfi, Yones; Faghihzadeh, Soghrat; sajedi, Hamed

    2014-11-01

    Auditory processing disorder (APD) describes a complex and heterogeneous disorder characterized by poor speech perception, especially in noisy environments. APD may be responsible for a range of sensory processing deficits associated with learning difficulties. There is no general consensus about the nature of APD and how the disorder should be assessed or managed. This study assessed the effect of cognition abilities (working memory capacity) on sound lateralization in children with auditory processing disorders, in order to determine how "auditory cognition" interacts with APD. The participants in this cross-sectional comparative study were 20 typically developing and 17 children with a diagnosed auditory processing disorder (9-11 years old). Sound lateralization abilities investigated using inter-aural time (ITD) differences and inter-aural intensity (IID) differences with two stimuli (high pass and low pass noise) in nine perceived positions. Working memory capacity was evaluated using the non-word repetition, and forward and backward digits span tasks. Linear regression was employed to measure the degree of association between working memory capacity and localization tests between the two groups. Children in the APD group had consistently lower scores than typically developing subjects in lateralization and working memory capacity measures. The results showed working memory capacity had significantly negative correlation with ITD errors especially with high pass noise stimulus but not with IID errors in APD children. The study highlights the impact of working memory capacity on auditory lateralization. The finding of this research indicates that the extent to which working memory influences auditory processing depend on the type of auditory processing and the nature of stimulus/listening situation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. The Development of Verbal and Visual Working Memory Processes: A Latent Variable Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koppenol-Gonzalez, Gabriela V.; Bouwmeester, Samantha; Vermunt, Jeroen K.

    2012-01-01

    Working memory (WM) processing in children has been studied with different approaches, focusing on either the organizational structure of WM processing during development (factor analytic) or the influence of different task conditions on WM processing (experimental). The current study combined both approaches, aiming to distinguish verbal and…

  20. Thalamic mediodorsal nucleus and its participation in spatial working memory processes: comparison with the prefrontal cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funahashi, Shintaro

    2013-01-01

    Working memory is a dynamic neural system that includes processes for temporarily maintaining and processing information. Working memory plays a significant role in a variety of cognitive functions, such as thinking, reasoning, decision-making, and language comprehension. Although the prefrontal cortex (PFC) is known to play an important role in working memory, several lines of evidence indicate that the thalamic mediodorsal nucleus (MD) also participates in this process. While monkeys perform spatial working memory tasks, MD neurons exhibit directionally selective delay-period activity, which is considered to be a neural correlate for the temporary maintenance of information in PFC neurons. Studies have also shown that, while most MD neurons maintain prospective motor information, some maintain retrospective sensory information. Thus, the MD plays a greater role in prospective motor aspects of working memory processes than the PFC, which participates more in retrospective aspects. For the performance of spatial working memory tasks, the information provided by a sensory cue needs to be transformed into motor information to give an appropriate response. A population vector analysis using neural activities revealed that, although the transformation of sensory-to-motor information occurred during the delay period in both the PFC and the MD, PFC activities maintained sensory information until the late phase of the delay period, while MD activities initially represented sensory information but then started to represent motor information in the earlier phase of the delay period. These results indicate that long-range neural interactions supported by reciprocal connections between the MD and the PFC could play an important role in the transformation of maintained information in working memory processes. PMID:23914160

  1. Electrocortical consequences of image processing: The influence of working memory load and worry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Evan J; Grant, DeMond M

    2017-03-30

    Research suggests that worry precludes emotional processing as well as biases attentional processes. Although there is burgeoning evidence for the relationship between executive functioning and worry, more research in this area is needed. A recent theory suggests one mechanism for the negative effects of worry on neural indicators of attention may be working memory load, however few studies have examined this directly. The goal of the current study was to document the influence of both visual and verbal working memory load and worry on attention allocation during processing of emotional images in a cued image paradigm. It was hypothesized that working memory load will decrease attention allocation during processing of emotional images. This was tested among 38 participants using a modified S1-S2 paradigm. Results indicated that both the visual and verbal working memory tasks resulted in a reduction of attention allocation to the processing of images across stimulus types compared to the baseline task, although only for individuals low in worry. These data extend the literature by documenting decreased neural responding (i.e., LPP amplitude) to imagery both the visual and verbal working memory load, particularly among individuals low in worry. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. 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

  3. The impact of working memory and the "process of process modelling" on model quality: Investigating experienced versus inexperienced modellers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martini, Markus; Pinggera, Jakob; Neurauter, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    the role of cognitive processes as well as modelling processes in creating a PM in experienced and inexperienced modellers. Specifically, two working memory (WM) functions (holding and processing of information and relational integration) and three process of process modelling phases (comprehension...

  4. Proficiency and Working Memory Based Explanations for Nonnative Speakers' Sensitivity to Agreement in Sentence Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coughlin, Caitlin E.; Tremblay, Annie

    2013-01-01

    This study examines the roles of proficiency and working memory (WM) capacity in second-/foreign-language (L2) learners' processing of agreement morphology. It investigates the processing of grammatical and ungrammatical short- and long-distance number agreement dependencies by native English speakers at two proficiencies in French, and the…

  5. Serial order working memory and numerical ordinal processing share common processes and predict arithmetic abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attout, Lucie; Majerus, Steve

    2017-09-12

    Recent studies have demonstrated that both ordinal number processing and serial order working memory (WM) abilities predict calculation achievement. This raises the question of shared ordinal processes operating in both numerical and WM domains. We explored this question by assessing the interrelations between numerical ordinal, serial order WM, and arithmetic abilities in 102 7- to 9-year-old children. We replicated previous studies showing that ordinal numerical judgement and serial order WM predict arithmetic abilities. Furthermore, we showed that ordinal numerical judgement abilities predict arithmetic abilities after controlling for serial order WM abilities while the relationship between serial order WM and arithmetic abilities was mediated by numerical ordinal judgement performance. We discuss these results in the light of recent theoretical frameworks considering that numerical ordinal codes support the coding of order information in verbal WM. Statement of contribution What is already known on this subject? Numerical ordinal processes predict mathematical achievement in adults. Order WM processing predicts first mathematical abilities. What the present study adds? Numerical ordinal processes predict mathematical achievement in children and independently of order WM. The link between order WM and mathematical abilities was mediated by long-term ordinal processes. © 2017 The British Psychological Society.

  6. Green tea extract enhances parieto-frontal connectivity during working memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, André; Hammann, Felix; Wölnerhanssen, Bettina; Meyer-Gerspach, Anne Christin; Drewe, Jürgen; Beglinger, Christoph; Borgwardt, Stefan

    2014-10-01

    It has been proposed that green tea extract may have a beneficial impact on cognitive functioning, suggesting promising clinical implications. However, the neural mechanisms underlying this putative cognitive enhancing effect of green tea extract still remain unknown. This study investigates whether the intake of green tea extract modulates effective brain connectivity during working memory processing and whether connectivity parameters are related to task performance. Using a double-blind, counterbalanced, within-subject design, 12 healthy volunteers received a milk whey-based soft drink containing 27.5 g of green tea extract or a milk whey-based soft drink without green tea as control substance while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging. Working memory effect on effective connectivity between frontal and parietal brain regions was evaluated using dynamic causal modeling. Green tea extract increased the working memory induced modulation of connectivity from the right superior parietal lobule to the middle frontal gyrus. Notably, the magnitude of green tea induced increase in parieto-frontal connectivity positively correlated with improvement in task performance. Our findings provide first evidence for the putative beneficial effect of green tea on cognitive functioning, in particular, on working memory processing at the neural system level by suggesting changes in short-term plasticity of parieto-frontal brain connections. Modeling effective connectivity among frontal and parietal brain regions during working memory processing might help to assess the efficacy of green tea for the treatment of cognitive impairments in psychiatric disorders such as dementia.

  7. A Processing Approach to the Working Memory/Long-Term Memory Distinction: Evidence from the Levels-of-Processing Span Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Nathan S.; Craik, Fergus I. M.

    2012-01-01

    Recent theories suggest that performance on working memory (WM) tasks involves retrieval from long-term memory (LTM). To examine whether WM and LTM tests have common principles, Craik and Tulving's (1975) levels-of-processing paradigm, which is known to affect LTM, was administered as a WM task: Participants made uppercase, rhyme, or…

  8. 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.

  9. Sentence processing and verbal working memory in a white-matter-disconnection patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Lars; Cunitz, Katrin; Obleser, Jonas; Friederici, Angela D

    2014-08-01

    The Arcuate Fasciculus/Superior Longitudinal Fasciculus (AF/SLF) is the white-matter bundle that connects posterior superior temporal and inferior frontal cortex. Its causal functional role in sentence processing and verbal working memory is currently under debate. While impairments of sentence processing and verbal working memory often co-occur in patients suffering from AF/SLF damage, it is unclear whether these impairments result from shared white-matter damage to the verbal-working-memory network. The present study sought to specify the behavioral consequences of focal AF/SLF damage for sentence processing and verbal working memory, which were assessed in a single patient suffering from a cleft-like lesion spanning the deep left superior temporal gyrus, sparing most surrounding gray matter. While tractography suggests that the ventral fronto-temporal white-matter bundle is intact in this patient, the AF/SLF was not visible to tractography. In line with the hypothesis that the AF/SLF is causally involved in sentence processing, the patient׳s performance was selectively impaired on sentences that jointly involve both complex word orders and long word-storage intervals. However, the patient was unimpaired on sentences that only involved long word-storage intervals without involving complex word orders. On the contrary, the patient performed generally worse than a control group across standard verbal-working-memory tests. We conclude that the AF/SLF not only plays a causal role in sentence processing, linking regions of the left dorsal inferior frontal gyrus to the temporo-parietal region, but moreover plays a crucial role in verbal working memory, linking regions of the left ventral inferior frontal gyrus to the left temporo-parietal region. Together, the specific sentence-processing impairment and the more general verbal-working-memory impairment may imply that the AF/SLF subserves both sentence processing and verbal working memory, possibly pointing to the AF

  10. Male veterans with PTSD exhibit aberrant neural dynamics during working memory processing: an MEG study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, Timothy J; Badura-Brack, Amy S; Becker, Katherine M; Ryan, Tara J; Khanna, Maya M; Heinrichs-Graham, Elizabeth; Wilson, Tony W

    2016-06-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with executive functioning deficits, including disruptions in working memory. In this study, we examined the neural dynamics of working memory processing in veterans with PTSD and a matched healthy control sample using magnetoencephalography (MEG). Our sample of recent combat veterans with PTSD and demographically matched participants without PTSD completed a working memory task during a 306-sensor MEG recording. The MEG data were preprocessed and transformed into the time-frequency domain. Significant oscillatory brain responses were imaged using a beamforming approach to identify spatiotemporal dynamics. Fifty-one men were included in our analyses: 27 combat veterans with PTSD and 24 controls. Across all participants, a dynamic wave of neural activity spread from posterior visual cortices to left frontotemporal regions during encoding, consistent with a verbal working memory task, and was sustained throughout maintenance. Differences related to PTSD emerged during early encoding, with patients exhibiting stronger α oscillatory responses than controls in the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Differences spread to the right supramarginal and temporal cortices during later encoding where, along with the right IFG, they persisted throughout the maintenance period. This study focused on men with combat-related PTSD using a verbal working memory task. Future studies should evaluate women and the impact of various traumatic experiences using diverse tasks. Posttraumatic stress disorder is associated with neurophysiological abnormalities during working memory encoding and maintenance. Veterans with PTSD engaged a bilateral network, including the inferior prefrontal cortices and supramarginal gyri. Right hemispheric neural activity likely reflects compensatory processing, as veterans with PTSD work to maintain accurate performance despite known cognitive deficits associated with the disorder.

  11. Interrelationships between Working Memory, Processing Speed, and Language Development in the Age Range 2-4 Years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newbury, Jayne; Klee, Thomas; Stokes, Stephanie F.; Moran, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: This study explored associations between working memory and language in children aged 2-4 years. Method: Seventy-seven children aged 24-30 months were assessed on tests measuring language, visual cognition, verbal working memory (VWM), phonological short-term memory (PSTM), and processing speed. A standardized test of receptive and…

  12. Activation and Binding in Verbal Working Memory: A Dual-Process Model for the Recognition of Nonwords

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klauss; Lange, Elke B.

    2009-01-01

    The article presents a mathematical model of short-term recognition based on dual-process models and the three-component theory of working memory [Oberauer, K. (2002). Access to information in working memory: Exploring the focus of attention. "Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 28", 411-421]. Familiarity arises…

  13. Working Memory Load Affects Processing Time in Spoken Word Recognition: Evidence from Eye-Movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadar, Britt; Skrzypek, Joshua E; Wingfield, Arthur; Ben-David, Boaz M

    2016-01-01

    In daily life, speech perception is usually accompanied by other tasks that tap into working memory capacity. However, the role of working memory on speech processing is not clear. The goal of this study was to examine how working memory load affects the timeline for spoken word recognition in ideal listening conditions. We used the "visual world" eye-tracking paradigm. The task consisted of spoken instructions referring to one of four objects depicted on a computer monitor (e.g., "point at the candle"). Half of the trials presented a phonological competitor to the target word that either overlapped in the initial syllable (onset) or at the last syllable (offset). Eye movements captured listeners' ability to differentiate the target noun from its depicted phonological competitor (e.g., candy or sandal). We manipulated working memory load by using a digit pre-load task, where participants had to retain either one (low-load) or four (high-load) spoken digits for the duration of a spoken word recognition trial. The data show that the high-load condition delayed real-time target discrimination. Specifically, a four-digit load was sufficient to delay the point of discrimination between the spoken target word and its phonological competitor. Our results emphasize the important role working memory plays in speech perception, even when performed by young adults in ideal listening conditions.

  14. Working memory load affects processing time in spoken word recognition: Evidence from eye-movements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Britt eHadar

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available In daily life, speech perception is usually accompanied by other tasks that tap into working memory capacity. However, the role of working memory on speech processing is not clear. The goal of this study was to examine how working memory load affects the timeline for spoken word recognition in ideal listening conditions. We used the ‘visual world’ eye-tracking paradigm. The task consisted of spoken instructions referring to one of four objects depicted on a computer monitor (e.g. point at the candle. Half of the trials presented a phonological competitor to the target word that either overlapped in the initial syllable (onset or at the last syllable (offset. Eye movements captured listeners’ ability to differentiate the target noun from its depicted phonological competitor (e.g., candy or sandal. We manipulated working memory load by using a digit pre-load task, where participants had to retain either one (low-load or four (high-load spoken digits for the duration of a spoken word recognition trial. The data show that the high-load condition delayed real-time target discrimination. Specifically, a four-digit load was sufficient to delay the point of discrimination between the spoken target word and its phonological competitor. Our results emphasize the important role working memory plays in speech perception, even when performed by young adults in ideal listening conditions.

  15. Stronger activation and deactivation in archery experts for differential cognitive strategy in visuospatial working memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Jeehye; Kim, Yang-Tae; Song, Hui-Jin; Lee, Hui Joong; Lee, Jongmin; Jung, Tae-Du; Lee, Gunyoung; Kwon, Eunjin; Kim, Jin Gu; Chang, Yongmin

    2012-04-01

    It is well known that elite athletes have higher performance in perception, planning, and execution in sports activities relative to novices. It remains controversial, however, whether any differences in basic cognitive functions between experts and novices exist. Furthermore, few studies have directly used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate neural activation and deactivation differences between experts and novices while performing visuospatial working memory (WM) tasks. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine possible differences in neural activation and deactivation associated with working memory components in processing visuospatial information between archery experts and novices. To this end, we employed a judgment of line orientation (JLO) task, which has a strong WM component. With regard to brain activation, archery experts displayed higher activation in cortical areas associated with visuospatial attention and working memory, including the middle frontal cortex, supplemental motor area, and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex than that of the novices during the performance of the JLO task. With regard to brain deactivation, archery experts exhibited stronger task-related deactivation in cortical areas, such as the paracentral cortex/precuneus and the anterior and posterior cingulate cortex related to the default network, than that of the novices. These results suggest that the archery experts have a strategy that demands greater use of neural correlates associated with visuospatial working memory and attention in addition to greater use of DMN in visuospatial working memory task not directly tied to their domain of expertise. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Phasic deactivation of the medial temporal lobe enables working memory processing under stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cousijn, Helena; Rijpkema, Mark; Qin, Shaozheng; van Wingen, Guido A; Fernández, Guillén

    2012-01-16

    Demanding cognitive tasks are sometimes carried out under stressful conditions. Several studies indicate that whereas severe stress impairs performance, moderate stress can enhance cognitive performance. In this study, we investigated how moderate stress influences the neural systems supporting working memory. We embedded an N-back working memory task in a moderately stressful context, as indicated by our physiological stress measures, and probed phasic and tonic human brain activity using two fMRI-techniques: conventional blood oxygen level dependent fMRI and arterial spin labeling (ASL). The results showed that the stress induction, as compared to the neutral control condition, led to slightly faster reaction times without changes in accuracy. In general, working memory processing was associated with increased activity in a frontoparietal network and reduced activity in the medial temporal lobe (MTL). The stress induction led to enhanced reduction of phasic MTL responses, specifically the hippocampus and amygdala. In addition, ASL showed that stress increased tonic amygdala activity, while tonic hippocampal activity was unaffected. These findings suggest that the influence of stress on MTL deactivation during working memory processing is task-related rather than a general consequence of the stressful state. The temporal suspension of hippocampal processing in favor of more task relevant processes may allow subjects to maintain normal performance levels under moderate stress. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Effects of Stress and Working Memory Capacity on Foreign Language Readers' Inferential Processing during Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rai, Manpreet K.; Loschky, Lester C.; Harris, Richard Jackson; Peck, Nicole R.; Cook, Lindsay G.

    2011-01-01

    Although stress is frequently claimed to impede foreign language (FL) reading comprehension, it is usually not explained how. We investigated the effects of stress, working memory (WM) capacity, and inferential complexity on Spanish FL readers' inferential processing during comprehension. Inferences, although necessary for reading comprehension,…

  18. A Split-Attention Effect in Multimedia Learning: Evidence for Dual Processing Systems in Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Richard E.; Moreno, Roxana

    1998-01-01

    Multimedia learners (n=146 college students) were able to integrate words and computer-presented pictures more easily when the words were presented aurally rather than visually. This split-attention effect is consistent with a dual-processing model of working memory. (SLD)

  19. Emotion perception and executive control interact in the salience network during emotionally charged working memory processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luo, Y.; Qin, S.; Fernandez, G.S.E.; Zhang, Y.; Klumpers, F.; Li, H.

    2014-01-01

    Processing of emotional stimuli can either hinder or facilitate ongoing working memory (WM); however, the neural basis of these effects remains largely unknown. Here we examined the neural mechanisms of these paradoxical effects by implementing a novel emotional WM task in an fMRI study. Twenty-five

  20. State Anxiety and Working Memory in Children: A Test of Processing Efficiency Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadwin, Julie A.; Brogan, Joanna; Stevenson, Jim

    2005-01-01

    This study investigated the effect of individual differences in state anxiety on tasks tapping the central executive, phonological, and visuo-spatial components of working memory (WM). It was designed to test Eysenck and Calvo's processing efficiency theory (PET) which suggests that the phonological and executive components of WM may be important…

  1. Reviewing the Role of Cognitive Load, Expertise Level, Motivation, and Unconscious Processing in Working Memory Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuldas, Seffetullah; Hashim, Shahabuddin; Ismail, Hairul Nizam; Abu Bakar, Zainudin

    2015-01-01

    Human cognitive capacity is unavailable for conscious processing of every amount of instructional messages. Aligning an instructional design with learner expertise level would allow better use of available working memory capacity in a cognitive learning task. Motivating students to learn consciously is also an essential determinant of the capacity…

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjortkjaer, 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...

  3. Working Memory Tasks in Relation to Phonological Processes of Arab Dyslexics in the State of Kuwait

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-dyiar, Mosaad Abo; Salem, Ashraf Atta M. S.

    2013-01-01

    The current study investigated the relationship between the working memory tasks and the phonological processes of Arab dyslexics in the primary stage in the State of Kuwait. The researchers used the descriptive research design. The sample of the study consists of 500 pupils (250 males and 250 females), their ages range from (9.05 ± 0.49) years…

  4. Basic numerical processing, calculation, and working memory in children with dyscalculia and/or ADHD symptoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Jörg-Tobias; Ise, Elena; Raddatz, Julia; Schwenk, Christin; Dobel, Christian

    2016-09-01

    Deficits in basic numerical skills, calculation, and working memory have been found in children with developmental dyscalculia (DD) as well as children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This paper investigates cognitive profiles of children with DD and/or ADHD symptoms (AS) in a double dissociation design to obtain a better understanding of the comorbidity of DD and ADHD. Children with DD-only (N = 33), AS-only (N = 16), comorbid DD+AS (N = 20), and typically developing controls (TD, N = 40) were assessed on measures of basic numerical processing, calculation, working memory, processing speed, and neurocognitive measures of attention. Children with DD (DD, DD+AS) showed deficits in all basic numerical skills, calculation, working memory, and sustained attention. Children with AS (AS, DD+AS) displayed more selective difficulties in dot enumeration, subtraction, verbal working memory, and processing speed. Also, they generally performed more poorly in neurocognitive measures of attention, especially alertness. Children with DD+AS mostly showed an additive combination of the deficits associated with DD-only and A_Sonly, except for subtraction tasks, in which they were less impaired than expected. DD and AS appear to be related to largely distinct patterns of cognitive deficits, which are present in combination in children with DD+AS.

  5. Linguistic Theory and Cognitive Neuroscience of Language. Working Memory and Syntactic Processing in Sentence Comprehension

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Caplan, David; Waters, Gloria

    2001-01-01

    ...., it requires a working memory system. Experimental results in normal subjects and patients with various brain lesions indicate that measurements of working memory that are derived from commonly used tests of this function...

  6. The effect of state worry and trait anxiety on working memory processes in a normal sample.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walkenhorst, Elizabeth; Crowe, Simon F

    2009-03-01

    This study investigated the effects of trait anxiety and state worry on working memory performance in a normal sample. Phase one investigated the effects of trait anxiety and state worry on the capacity of specific working memory components. Phase two investigated the validity of Eysenck and Calvo's (1992) Processing Efficiency Theory of worry. Sixty adult participants (40 females and 20 males with a mean age of 26 years) were assigned to a 2 (trait anxiety: Low vs. high)x2 (state worry: Low vs. high) between-subjects design. Contrary to prediction, worry did not lead to a decrement in performance on verbal working memory tasks but unexpectedly enhanced performance on visual tasks in participants with low trait anxiety (LTA). The results were also in opposition to expectations for Phase two. Individuals in the conditions of high trait anxiety and/or high state worry (LTA/HW, HTA/LW, and HTA/HW) displayed shorter response latencies than individuals in the LTA and low state worry (LTA/LW) condition on both verbal and spatial working memory (i.e., N-back) tasks. Although non-pathological worry is predominantly a verbal-linguistic activity, it may also be complemented by the processing of visual imagery which facilitates problem-solving and adaptive functions.

  7. Working memory processing of traumatic material in women with posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landré, Lionel; Destrieux, Christophe; Andersson, Frédéric; Barantin, Laurent; Quidé, Yann; Tapia, Géraldine; Jaafari, Nematollah; Clarys, David; Gaillard, Philippe; Isingrini, Michel; El-Hage, Wissam

    2012-02-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with medial frontal and amygdala functional alterations during the processing of traumatic material and frontoparietal dysfunctions during working memory tasks. This functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study investigated the effects of trauma-related words processing on working memory in patients with PTSD. We obtained fMRI scans during a 3-back task and an identity task on both neutral and trauma-related words in women with PTSD who had been sexually abused and in healthy, nonexposed pair-matched controls. Seventeen women with PTSD and 17 controls participated in the study. We found no behavioural working memory deficit for the PTSD group. In both tasks, deactivation of posterior parietal midline regions was more pronounced in patients than controls. Additionally, patients with PTSD recruited the left dorsolateral frontal sites to a greater extent during the processing of trauma-related material than neutral material. This study included only women and did not include a trauma-exposed non-PTSD control group; the results may, therefore, have been influenced by sex or by effects specific to trauma exposure. Our results broadly confirm frontal and parietal functional variations in women with PTSD and suggest a compensatory nature of these variations with regard to the retreival of traumatic memories and global attentional deficits, respectively, during cognitively challenging tasks.

  8. Working memory and processing speed training in schizophrenia: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassetta, Briana D; Goghari, Vina M

    2016-01-26

    In most domains of cognition, individuals with schizophrenia are generally found to be one standard deviation below the mean of the controls. As a result, examining the impact of cognitive remediation in individuals with schizophrenia has been a burgeoning area of research. However, the state of the literature remains unclear as to which domains of cognition should be targeted to produce the most widespread and durable benefits for individuals with schizophrenia. One suggestion is that targeting lower-level cognitive processes that are important for higher-level and more complex aspects of cognition may produce the most widespread benefits in cognition and everyday functioning. Relatively few studies have examined the effects of working memory or processing speed training in schizophrenia, as most studies examine broad-based remediation programs. Thus, a need exists for targeted working memory and processing speed training studies to better understand the mechanisms of cognitive enhancement in patients. This study aims to 1) investigate near-transfer gains (that is, the transfer of learning to related contexts) associated with working memory and processing speed training in schizophrenia patients; 2) investigate far-transfer gains (that is, the transfer of learning to new contexts) associated with working memory and processing speed training (that is, gains in other neurocognitive domains and social cognition); and 3) investigate real-world gains associated with training (that is, gains in daily functioning). A double-blind randomized controlled trial with a three parallel group design will be conducted. A random sample of 81 patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder will be recruited through outpatient clinics at Foothills Hospital and community support programs in Calgary, Alberta. Participants will be randomly assigned using a computer-generated program in a 1:1:1 ratio to a working memory-training group, a processing speed-training group, or a no

  9. Accessing the mental space - Spatial working memory processes for language and vision overlap in precuneus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wallentin, Mikkel; Weed, Ethan; Østergaard, Leif

    2008-01-01

    Abstract: The ‘‘overlapping systems'' theory of language function argues that linguistic meaning construction crucially relies on contextual information provided by ‘‘nonlinguistic'' cognitive systems, such as perception and memory. This study examines whether linguistic processing of spatial......, strikingly overlapping a network previously shown to be involved in recall of spatial aspects of images depicting similar scenarios. This supports a neurocognitive model of language function, where sentences establish meaning by interacting with the perceptual and working memory networks of the brain....

  10. On the interplay between working memory consolidation and attentional selection in controlling conscious access : Parallel processing at a cost-a comment on 'The interplay of attention and consciousness in visual search, attentional blink and working memory consolidation'

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wyble, Brad; Bowman, Howard; Nieuwenstein, Mark

    On the interplay between working memory consolidation and attentional selection in controlling conscious access: parallel processing at a cost-a comment on 'The interplay of attention and consciousness in visual search, attentional blink and working memory consolidation'

  11. Effects of working memory span on processing of lexical associations and congruence in spoken discourse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan Ann Boudewyn

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The goal of this study was to determine whether variability in working-memory capacity and cognitive control affects the processing of global discourse congruence and local associations among words when participants listened to short discourse passages. The final, critical word of each passage was either associated or unassociated with a preceding prime word (e.g. He was not prepared for the fame and fortune/praise. These critical words were also either congruent or incongruent with respect to the preceding discourse context (e.g. a context in which a prestigious prize was won (congruent or in which the protagonist had been arrested (incongruent. We used multiple regression to assess the unique contribution of suppression ability (our measure of cognitive control and working memory capacity on the amplitude of individual N400 effects of congruence and association. Our measure of suppression ability did not predict the size of the N400 effects of association or congruence. However, as expected, the results showed that high working-memory capacity individuals were less sensitive to the presence of lexical associations (showed smaller N400 association effects. Furthermore, differences in working memory capacity were related to differences in the topographic distribution of the N400 effects of discourse congruence. The topographic differences in the global congruence effects indicate differences in the underlying neural generators of the N400 effects, as a function of working memory. This suggests additional, or at a minimum, distinct, processing on the part of higher capacity individuals when tasked with integrating incoming words into the developing discourse representation.

  12. The Role of Aging in Intra-Item and Item-Context Binding Processes in Visual Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Dwight J.; Naveh-Benjamin, Moshe

    2016-01-01

    Aging is accompanied by declines in both working memory and long-term episodic memory processes. Specifically, important age-related memory deficits are characterized by performance impairments exhibited by older relative to younger adults when binding distinct components into a single integrated representation, despite relatively intact memory…

  13. Does caffeine modulate verbal working memory processes? An fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koppelstaetter, F; Poeppel, T D; Siedentopf, C M; Ischebeck, A; Verius, M; Haala, I; Mottaghy, F M; Rhomberg, P; Golaszewski, S; Gotwald, T; Lorenz, I H; Kolbitsch, C; Felber, S; Krause, B J

    2008-01-01

    To assess the effect of caffeine on the functional MRI signal during a 2-back verbal working memory task, we examined blood oxygenation level-dependent regional brain activity in 15 healthy right-handed males. The subjects, all moderate caffeine consumers, underwent two scanning sessions on a 1.5-T MR-Scanner separated by a 24- to 48-h interval. Each participant received either placebo or 100 mg caffeine 20 min prior to the performance of the working memory task in blinded crossover fashion. The study was implemented as a blocked-design. Analysis was performed using SPM2. In both conditions, the characteristic working memory network of frontoparietal cortical activation including the precuneus and the anterior cingulate could be shown. In comparison to placebo, caffeine caused an increased response in the bilateral medial frontopolar cortex (BA 10), extending to the right anterior cingulate cortex (BA 32). These results suggest that caffeine modulates neuronal activity as evidenced by fMRI signal changes in a network of brain areas associated with executive and attentional functions during working memory processes.

  14. Processing speed and visuospatial executive function predict visual working memory ability in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Louise A; Brockmole, James R; Gow, Alan J; Deary, Ian J

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND/STUDY CONTEXT: Visual working memory (VWM) has been shown to be particularly age sensitive. Determining which measures share variance with this cognitive ability in older adults may help to elucidate the key factors underlying the effects of aging. Predictors of VWM (measured by a modified Visual Patterns Test) were investigated in a subsample (N = 44, mean age = 73) of older adults from the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 (LBC1936; Deary et al., 2007 , BMC Geriatrics, 7, 28). Childhood intelligence (Moray House Test) and contemporaneous measures of processing speed (four-choice reaction time), executive function (verbal fluency; block design), and spatial working memory (backward spatial span), were assessed as potential predictors. All contemporaneous measures except verbal fluency were significantly associated with VWM, and processing speed had the largest effect size (r = -.53, p material are also important.

  15. Visual and cognitive processing of face information in schizophrenia: detection, discrimination and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yue; Norton, Daniel; McBain, Ryan; Ongur, Dost; Heckers, Stephan

    2009-01-01

    Face recognition involves several physiological and psychological processes, including those in visual, cognitive and affective domains. Studies have found that schizophrenia patients are deficient at recognizing facial emotions, yet visual and cognitive processing of facial information in this population has not been systematically examined. In this study, we examined visual detection, perceptual discrimination and working memory of faces as well as non-face visual objects in patients. Visual detection was measured by accuracy when detecting the presence of a briefly displayed face, image which contained only the basic configural information of a face. Perceptual discrimination was measured by discriminability scores for individual facial identity images, in which the degree of similarity between images was systematically varied via morphing. Working memory was measured by the discriminability scores when two comparison face images were separated by 3 or 10 s. All measurements were acquired using a psychophysical method (two-alternative forced choice). Relative to controls, patients showed significantly reduced accuracy in visual detection of faces (p=0.003), moderately degraded performance in perceptual discrimination of faces (p=0.065), and significantly impaired performance in working memory of faces (pface versions of these tasks, while degraded, was not correlated with performance on face recognition. This pattern of results indicates that greater signal strength is required for visual and cognitive processing of facial information in schizophrenia.

  16. Storage and Processing Working Memory Functions in Alzheimer-Type Dementia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Vecchi

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available A selective deterioration of working memory functions has been suggested as an explanation of the cognitive decay occurring in normal ageing as well as in Alzheimer-type dementia. Recent studies have highlighted that elderly people’s limitations in working memory functions may be better interpreted when analysing the specific characteristics of the cognitive process (i.e., passive storage or active manipulation of information. In the present study, we have adapted a procedure used to investigate age-related memory modifications, involving both verbal and visuo-spatial material in tasks tapping passive and active processes, to investigate the deterioration associated with Alzheimer's disease. A group of Alzheimer patients in the early stages of the disease were matched to a control group of healthy elderly. Results show that Alzheimer patients performed less accurately than the control group in all tasks. However, the deficit was maximised in the case of active processes, regardless of the type of material used (verbal or visuo-spatial. These data highlight the importance of considering the amount of active processing as the key variable when interpreting the decay in cognitive functions in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.

  17. Binge drinking affects attentional and visual working memory processing in young university students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crego, Alberto; Holguín, Socorro Rodriguez; Parada, María; Mota, Nayara; Corral, Montserrat; Cadaveira, Fernando

    2009-11-01

    Binge Drinking (BD) typically involves heavy drinking over a short time, followed by a period of abstinence, and is common among young people, especially university students. Animal studies have demonstrated that this type of alcohol consumption causes brain damage, especially in the nonmature brain. The aim of the present study was to determine how BD affects brain functioning in male and female university students, during the performance of a visual working memory task. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded, with an extensive set of 32 scalp electrodes, in 95 first-year university students (age range 18 to 20 years), comprising 42 binge drinkers (BD) and 53 controls, in a visual "identical pairs" continuous performance task. Principal components analysis was used to identify and analyze the N2 (negative waveform with a latency around 200 to 300 ms related to attentional processes) and P3 (positive waveform with a latency around 300 to 600 ms related to working memory processes) components of the ERPs. In the matching condition of the task, the N2 component in central and parietal regions was significantly larger in the BD than in the control group. In the control group, the P3 component was larger in the matching than in the nonmatching condition in the frontal, central, and parietal regions, whereas the BD group did not show any significant differences between conditions in any region. The results of this study confirm the presence of electrophysiological differences between young university student binge drinkers and controls during the execution of a visual task with a high working memory load. The larger N2 in the BD group suggests higher levels of attentional effort required by this group to perform the task adequately. The absence of any differences in the P3 component in the different conditions (matching and nonmatching stimuli) in the BD group suggests a deficiency in the electrophysiological differentiation between relevant and irrelevant

  18. The direction of word stress processing in German: Evidence from a working memory paradigm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank eDomahs

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available There are contradicting assumptions and findings on the direction of word stress processing in German. To resolve this question, we asked participants to read tri-syllabic nonwords and stress ambiguous words aloud. Additionally, they also performed a working memory task (2-back task. In nonword reading, participants’ individual working memory capacity was positively correlated with assignment of main stress to the antepenultimate syllable, which is most distant to the word’s right edge, while a (complementary negative correlation was observed with assignment of stress to the ultimate syllable. There was no significant correlation between working memory capacity and stress assignment to the penultimate syllable, which has been claimed to be the default stress pattern in German. In reading stress ambiguous words a similar but non-significant pattern was observed as in nonword reading. In sum, our results provide first psycholinguistic evidence supporting leftward stress processing in German. Our results do not lend support to the assumption of penultimate default stress in German. A specification of the lemma model is proposed which seems able to reconcile our findings and apparently contradicting assumptions and evidence.

  19. How working memory relates to children's reading comprehension: the importance of domain-specificity in storage and processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouwens, Suzan; Groen, Margriet A; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2017-01-01

    Working memory is considered a well-established predictor of individual variation in reading comprehension in children and adults. However, how storage and processing capacities of working memory in both the phonological and semantic domain relate to reading comprehension is still unclear. In the current study, we investigated the contribution of phonological and semantic storage, and phonological and semantic processing to reading comprehension in 123 Dutch children in fifth grade. We conducted regression and mediation analyses to find out to what extent variation in reading comprehension could be explained by storage and processing capacities in both the phonological and the semantic domain, while controlling for children's decoding and vocabulary. The analyses included tasks that reflect storage only, and working memory tasks that assess processing in addition to storage. Regression analysis including only storage tasks as predictor measures, revealed semantic storage to be a better predictor of reading comprehension than phonological storage. Adding phonological and semantic working memory tasks as additional predictors to the model showed that semantic working memory explained individual variation in reading comprehension over and above all other memory measures. Additional mediation analysis made it clear that semantic storage contributed indirectly to reading comprehension via semantic working memory, indicating that semantic storage tapped by working memory, in addition to processing capacities, explains individual variation in reading comprehension. It can thus be concluded that semantic storage plays a more important role in children's reading comprehension than previously thought.

  20. How Working Memory Relates to Children's Reading Comprehension: The Importance of Domain-Specificity in Storage and Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouwens, Suzan; Groen, Margriet A.; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2017-01-01

    Working memory is considered a well-established predictor of individual variation in reading comprehension in children and adults. However, how storage and processing capacities of working memory in both the phonological and semantic domain relate to reading comprehension is still unclear. In the current study, we investigated the contribution of…

  1. How working memory relates to children's reading comprehension: The importance of domain-specificity in storage and processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nouwens, S.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2017-01-01

    Working memory is considered a well-established predictor of individual variation in reading comprehension in children and adults. However, how storage and processing capacities of working memory in both the phonological and semantic domain relate to reading comprehension is still unclear. In the

  2. The role of executive processes in working memory deficits in Parkinson’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gruszka Aleksandra

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (PD impairs working memory, but the exact nature of this deficit in terms of the underlying cognitive mechanisms is not well understood. In this study patients with mild clinical symptoms of PD were compared with matched healthy control subjects on a computerized battery of tests designed to assess spatial working memory and verbal working memory. In the spatial working memory task, subjects were required to recall a sequence of four locations. The verbal working memory task was methodologically identical except for the modality of the stimuli used, requiring subjects to orally recall a sequence of six digits. In either case, half of the sequences were structured in a way that allowed ‘chunking’, while others were unstructured. This manipulation was designed to dissociate the strategic component of task performance from the memory-load component. Mild medicated patients with PD were impaired only on the structured versions of the verbal working memory tasks. The analogous deficit in the spatial working memory was less pronounced. These findings are in agreement with the hypothesis that working memory deficits in PD reflect mainly the executive component of the tasks and that the deficits may be at least partly modality-independent.

  3. The effects of age on processing and storage in working memory span tasks and reading comprehension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Paul J

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND/STUDY CONTEXT: Declines in verbal working memory span task performance have been associated with deficits in the language processing abilities of healthy older adults, but it is unclear how storage and processing contribute to this relationship. Moreover, recent studies of the psychometric properties of span measures in the general cognitive literature highlight the need for a critical reassessment of age-related differences in working memory task performance. Forty-two young (Mage = 19.45 years) and 42 older participants (Mage = 73.00 years) completed a series of neuropsychological screening measures, four memory span tasks (one-syllable word span, three-syllable word span, reading span, and sentence span), and a measure of reading comprehension. Each span measure was completed under self-paced and timed encoding conditions. A 2 (age) × 2 (task type) × 2 (encoding conditions) mixed-model design was used. (1) Age effects were reliable for both simple and complex span task performance; (2) limiting the available encoding time yielded lower recall scores across tasks and exacerbated age differences in simple span performance; and (3) both encoding condition and age affected the relationship between each of the span measures and the relationship between span and reading comprehension. Declines in both storage and processing abilities contributed to age differences in span task performance and the relationship between span and reading comprehension. Although older people appear to benefit from task administration protocols that promote successful memory encoding, researchers should be aware of the potential risks to validity posed by such accommodations.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  6. A functional MRI study of the influence of practice on component processes of working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landau, Susan M; Schumacher, Eric H; Garavan, Hugh; Druzgal, T Jason; D'Esposito, Mark

    2004-05-01

    Previous neuroimaging studies have shown that neural activity changes with task practice. The types of changes reported have been inconsistent, however, and the neural mechanisms involved remain unclear. In this study, we investigated the influence of practice on different component processes of working memory (WM) using a face WM task. Event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) methodology allowed us to examine signal changes from early to late in the scanning session within different task stages (i.e., encoding, delay, retrieval), as well as to determine the influence of different levels of WM load on neural activity. We found practice-related decreases in fMRI signal and effects of memory load occurring primarily during encoding. This suggests that practice improves encoding efficiency, especially at higher memory loads. The decreases in fMRI signal we observed were not accompanied by improved behavioral performance; in fact, error rate increased for high WM load trials, indicating that practice-related changes in activation may occur during a scanning session without behavioral evidence of learning. Our results suggest that practice influences particular component processes of WM differently, and that the efficiency of these processes may not be captured by performance measures alone.

  7. Speech segmentation by statistical learning is supported by domain-general processes within working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Shekeila D; Mattys, Sven L

    2016-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which working memory resources are recruited during statistical learning (SL). Participants were asked to identify novel words in an artificial speech stream where the transitional probabilities between syllables provided the only segmentation cue. Experiments 1 and 2 demonstrated that segmentation performance improved when the speech rate was slowed down, suggesting that SL is supported by some form of active processing or maintenance mechanism that operates more effectively under slower presentation rates. In Experiment 3 we investigated the nature of this mechanism by asking participants to perform a two-back task while listening to the speech stream. Half of the participants performed a two-back rhyme task designed to engage phonological processing, whereas the other half performed a comparable two-back task on un-nameable visual shapes. It was hypothesized that if SL is dependent only upon domain-specific processes (i.e., phonological rehearsal), the rhyme task should impair speech segmentation performance more than the shape task. However, the two loads were equally disruptive to learning, as they both eradicated the benefit provided by the slow rate. These results suggest that SL is supported by working-memory processes that rely on domain-general resources.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Dorsal and ventral working memory-related brain areas support distinct processes in contextual cueing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manginelli, Angela A; Baumgartner, Florian; Pollmann, Stefan

    2013-02-15

    Behavioral evidence suggests that the use of implicitly learned spatial contexts for improved visual search may depend on visual working memory resources. Working memory may be involved in contextual cueing in different ways: (1) for keeping implicitly learned working memory contents available during search or (2) for the capture of attention by contexts retrieved from memory. We mapped brain areas that were modulated by working memory capacity. Within these areas, activation was modulated by contextual cueing along the descending segment of the intraparietal sulcus, an area that has previously been related to maintenance of explicit memories. Increased activation for learned displays, but not modulated by the size of contextual cueing, was observed in the temporo-parietal junction area, previously associated with the capture of attention by explicitly retrieved memory items, and in the ventral visual cortex. This pattern of activation extends previous research on dorsal versus ventral stream functions in memory guidance of attention to the realm of attentional guidance by implicit memory. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Age differences in brain systems supporting transient and sustained processes involved in prospective memory and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peira, Nathalie; Ziaei, Maryam; Persson, Jonas

    2016-01-15

    In prospective memory (PM), an intention to act in response to an external event is formed, retained, and at a later stage, when the event occurs, the relevant action is performed. PM typically shows a decline in late adulthood, which might affect functions of daily living. The neural correlates of this decline are not well understood. Here, 15 young (6 female; age range=23-30years) and 16 older adults (5 female; age range=64-74years) were scanned with fMRI to examine age-related differences in brain activation associated with event-based PM using a task that facilitated the separation of transient and sustained components of PM. We show that older adults had reduced performance in conditions with high demands on prospective and working memory, while no age-difference was observed in low-demanding tasks. Across age groups, PM task performance activated separate sets of brain regions for transient and sustained responses. Age-differences in transient activation were found in fronto-striatal and MTL regions, with young adults showing more activation than older adults. Increased activation in young, compared to older adults, was also found for sustained PM activation in the IFG. These results provide new evidence that PM relies on dissociable transient and sustained cognitive processes, and that age-related deficits in PM can be explained by an inability to recruit PM-related brain networks in old age. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Spectral EEG abnormalities during vibrotactile encoding and quantitative working memory processing in schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Ludwig

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Schizophrenia is associated with a number of cognitive impairments such as deficient sensory encoding or working memory processing. However, it is largely unclear how dysfunctions on these various levels of cortical processing contribute to alterations of stimulus-specific information representation. To test this, we used a well-established sequential frequency comparison paradigm, in which sensory encoding of vibrotactile stimuli can be assessed via frequency-specific steady-state evoked potentials (SSEPs over primary somatosensory cortex (S1. Further, we investigated the maintenance of frequency information in working memory (WM in terms of parametric power modulations of induced beta-band EEG oscillations. In the present study schizophrenic patients showed significantly less pronounced SSEPs during vibrotactile stimulation than healthy controls. In particular, inter-trial phase coherence was reduced. While maintaining vibrotactile frequencies in WM, patients showed a significantly weaker prefrontal beta-power modulation compared to healthy controls. Crucially, patients exhibited no general disturbances in attention, as inferred from a behavioral test and from alpha-band event-related synchronization. Together, our results provide novel evidence that patients with schizophrenia show altered neural correlates of stimulus-specific sensory encoding and WM maintenance, suggesting an early somatosensory impairment as well as alterations in the formation of abstract representations of task-relevant stimulus information.

  13. Spatial working memory deficits in GluA1 AMPA receptor subunit knockout mice reflect impaired short-term habituation: Evidence for Wagner's dual-process memory model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanderson, David J.; McHugh, Stephen B.; Good, Mark A.; Sprengel, Rolf; Seeburg, Peter H.; Rawlins, J. Nicholas P.; Bannerman, David M.

    2010-01-01

    Genetically modified mice, lacking the GluA1 AMPA receptor subunit, are impaired on spatial working memory tasks, but display normal acquisition of spatial reference memory tasks. One explanation for this dissociation is that working memory, win-shift performance engages a GluA1-dependent, non-associative, short-term memory process through which animals choose relatively novel arms in preference to relatively familiar options. In contrast, spatial reference memory, as exemplified by the Morris water maze task, reflects a GluA1-independent, associative, long-term memory mechanism. These results can be accommodated by Wagner's dual-process model of memory in which short and long-term memory mechanisms exist in parallel and, under certain circumstances, compete with each other. According to our analysis, GluA1−/− mice lack short-term memory for recently experienced spatial stimuli. One consequence of this impairment is that these stimuli should remain surprising and thus be better able to form long-term associative representations. Consistent with this hypothesis, we have recently shown that long-term spatial memory for recently visited locations is enhanced in GluA1−/− mice, despite impairments in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Taken together, these results support a role for GluA1-containing AMPA receptors in short-term habituation, and in modulating the intensity or perceived salience of stimuli. PMID:20350557

  14. The role of non-verbal working memory in morphosyntactic processing by school-aged monolingual and bilingual children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangopadhyay, Ishanti; Davidson, Meghan M.; Weismer, Susan Ellis; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2015-01-01

    The current study examined the relationship between non-verbal working memory and morphosyntactic processing in monolingual native speakers of English and bilingual speakers of English and Spanish. We tested 42 monolingual children and 42 bilingual children between the ages of 8 and 10, matched on age and non-verbal IQ. Children were administered an auditory Grammaticality Judgment task in English to measure morphosyntatic processing, and a visual N-Back task and a Corsi Blocks task to measure non-verbal working memory capacity. Analyses revealed that monolinguals were more sensitive to English morphosyntactic information than bilinguals, but the groups did not differ in reaction times or response bias. Furthermore, higher non-verbal working memory capacity was associated with greater sensitivity to morphosyntactic violations in bilinguals, but not in monolinguals. The findings suggest that non-verbal working memory skills link more tightly to syntactic processing in populations with lower levels of language knowledge. PMID:26550957

  15. The role of nonverbal working memory in morphosyntactic processing by school-aged monolingual and bilingual children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangopadhyay, Ishanti; Davidson, Meghan M; Ellis Weismer, Susan; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2016-02-01

    The current study examined the relationship between nonverbal working memory and morphosyntactic processing in monolingual native speakers of English and bilingual speakers of English and Spanish. We tested 42 monolingual children and 42 bilingual children between the ages of 8 and 10years matched on age and nonverbal IQ. Children were administered an auditory Grammaticality Judgment task in English to measure morphosyntactic processing and a visual N-Back task and Corsi Blocks task to measure nonverbal working memory capacity. Analyses revealed that monolinguals were more sensitive to English morphosyntactic information than bilinguals, but the groups did not differ in reaction times or response bias. Furthermore, higher nonverbal working memory capacity was associated with greater sensitivity to morphosyntactic violations in bilinguals but not in monolinguals. The findings suggest that nonverbal working memory skills link more tightly to syntactic processing in populations with lower levels of language knowledge. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Distinct contributions of attention and working memory to visual statistical learning and ensemble processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Michelle G; Mattingley, Jason B; Dux, Paul E

    2015-08-01

    The brain exploits redundancies in the environment to efficiently represent the complexity of the visual world. One example of this is ensemble processing, which provides a statistical summary of elements within a set (e.g., mean size). Another is statistical learning, which involves the encoding of stable spatial or temporal relationships between objects. It has been suggested that ensemble processing over arrays of oriented lines disrupts statistical learning of structure within the arrays (Zhao, Ngo, McKendrick, & Turk-Browne, 2011). Here we asked whether ensemble processing and statistical learning are mutually incompatible, or whether this disruption might occur because ensemble processing encourages participants to process the stimulus arrays in a way that impedes statistical learning. In Experiment 1, we replicated Zhao and colleagues' finding that ensemble processing disrupts statistical learning. In Experiments 2 and 3, we found that statistical learning was unimpaired by ensemble processing when task demands necessitated (a) focal attention to individual items within the stimulus arrays and (b) the retention of individual items in working memory. Together, these results are consistent with an account suggesting that ensemble processing and statistical learning can operate over the same stimuli given appropriate stimulus processing demands during exposure to regularities. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  17. 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).

  18. High Work Output Ni-Ti-Pt High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys and Associated Processing Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noebe, Ronald D. (Inventor); Draper, Susan L. (Inventor); Nathal, Michael V. (Inventor); Garg, Anita (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    According to the invention, compositions of Ni-Ti-Pt high temperature, high force, shape memory alloys are disclosed that have transition temperatures above 100 C.; have narrow hysteresis; and produce a high specific work output.

  19. Visuo-spatial processing in a dynamic and a static working memory paradigm in schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cocchi, Luca; Schenk, Françoise; Volken, Henri

    2007-01-01

    patients with schizophrenia and matched controls in a new working memory paradigm involving dynamic (the Ball Flight Task - BFT) or static (the Static Pattern Task - SPT) visual stimuli. In the BFT, the responses of the patients were apparently based on the retention of the last set of segments...... that visuo-spatial working memory can simply be dissociated into visual and spatial sub-components....

  20. Hormonal modulation of novelty processing in women: Enhanced under working memory load with high dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate-to-dehydroepiandrosterone ratios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    do Vale, Sónia; Selinger, Lenka; Martins, João Martin; Bicho, Manuel; do Carmo, Isabel; Escera, Carles

    2016-11-10

    Several studies have suggested that dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEAS) may enhance working memory and attention, yet current evidence is still inconclusive. The balance between both forms of the hormone might be crucial regarding the effects that DHEA and DHEAS exert on the central nervous system. To test the hypothesis that higher DHEAS-to-DHEA ratios might enhance working memory and/or involuntary attention, we studied the DHEAS-to-DHEA ratio in relation to involuntary attention and working memory processing by recording the electroencephalogram of 22 young women while performing a working memory load task and a task without working memory load in an audio-visual oddball paradigm. DHEA and DHEAS were measured in saliva before each task. We found that a higher DHEAS-to-DHEA ratio was related to enhanced auditory novelty-P3 amplitudes during performance of the working memory task, indicating an increased processing of the distracter, while on the other hand there was no difference in the processing of the visual target. These results suggest that the balance between DHEAS and DHEA levels modulates involuntary attention during the performance of a task with cognitive load without interfering with the processing of the task-relevant visual stimulus. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Inattentive Behavior in Boys with ADHD during Classroom Instruction: the Mediating Role of Working Memory Processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orban, Sarah A; Rapport, Mark D; Friedman, Lauren M; Eckrich, Samuel J; Kofler, Michael J

    2017-08-19

    Children with ADHD exhibit clinically impairing inattentive behavior during classroom instruction and in other cognitively demanding contexts. However, there have been surprisingly few attempts to validate anecdotal parent/teacher reports of intact sustained attention during 'preferred' activities such as watching movies. The current investigation addresses this omission, and provides an initial test of how ADHD-related working memory deficits contribute to inattentive behavior during classroom instruction. Boys ages 8-12 (M = 9.62, SD = 1.22) with ADHD (n = 32) and typically developing boys (TD; n = 30) completed a counterbalanced series of working memory tests and watched two videos on separate assessment days: an analogue math instructional video, and a non-instructional video selected to match the content and cognitive demands of parent/teacher-described 'preferred' activities. Objective, reliable observations of attentive behavior revealed no between-group differences during the non-instructional video (d = -0.02), and attentive behavior during the non-instructional video was unrelated to all working memory variables (r = -0.11 to 0.19, ns). In contrast, the ADHD group showed disproportionate attentive behavior decrements during analogue classroom instruction (d = -0.71). Bias-corrected, bootstrapped, serial mediation revealed that 59% of this between-group difference was attributable to ADHD-related impairments in central executive working memory, both directly (ER = 41%) and indirectly via its role in coordinating phonological short-term memory (ER = 15%). Between-group attentive behavior differences were no longer detectable after accounting for ADHD-related working memory impairments (d = -0.29, ns). Results confirm anecdotal reports of intact sustained attention during activities that place minimal demands on working memory, and indicate that ADHD children's inattention during analogue classroom instruction is related, in large part

  2. Visual encoding impairment in patients with schizophrenia: contribution of reduced working memory span, decreased processing speed, and affective symptoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brébion, Gildas; Stephan-Otto, Christian; Huerta-Ramos, Elena; Ochoa, Susana; Usall, Judith; Abellán-Vega, Helena; Roca, Mercedes; Haro, Josep Maria

    2015-01-01

    Previous research has revealed the contribution of decreased processing speed and reduced working memory span in verbal and visual memory impairment in patients with schizophrenia. The role of affective symptoms in verbal memory has also emerged in a few studies. The authors designed a picture recognition task to investigate the impact of these factors on visual encoding. Two types of pictures (black and white vs. colored) were presented under 2 different conditions of context encoding (either displayed at a specific location or in association with another visual stimulus). It was assumed that the process of encoding associated pictures was more effortful than that of encoding pictures that were presented alone. Working memory span and processing speed were assessed. In the patient group, working memory span was significantly associated with the recognition of the associated pictures but not significantly with that of the other pictures. Controlling for processing speed eliminated the patients' deficit in the recognition of the colored pictures and greatly reduced their deficit in the recognition of the black-and-white pictures. The recognition of the black-and-white pictures was inversely related to anxiety in men and to depression in women. Working memory span constrains the effortful visual encoding processes in patients, whereas processing speed decrement accounts for most of their visual encoding deficit. Affective symptoms also have an impact on visual encoding, albeit differently in men and women. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved.

  3. Evolution of working memory

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Peter Carruthers

    2013-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is fundamental to many aspects of human life, including learning, speech and text comprehension, prospection and future planning, and explicit "system 2" forms of reasoning, as well as overlapping...

  4. Shared processing in multiple object tracking and visual working memory in the absence of response order and task order confounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapierre, Mark D; Cropper, Simon J; Howe, Piers D L

    2017-01-01

    To understand how the visual system represents multiple moving objects and how those representations contribute to tracking, it is essential that we understand how the processes of attention and working memory interact. In the work described here we present an investigation of that interaction via a series of tracking and working memory dual-task experiments. Previously, it has been argued that tracking is resistant to disruption by a concurrent working memory task and that any apparent disruption is in fact due to observers making a response to the working memory task, rather than due to competition for shared resources. Contrary to this, in our experiments we find that when task order and response order confounds are avoided, all participants show a similar decrease in both tracking and working memory performance. However, if task and response order confounds are not adequately controlled for we find substantial individual differences, which could explain the previous conflicting reports on this topic. Our results provide clear evidence that tracking and working memory tasks share processing resources.

  5. Impact of load-related neural processes on feature binding in visuospatial working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole A Kochan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The capacity of visual working memory (WM is substantially limited and only a fraction of what we see is maintained as a temporary trace. The process of binding visual features has been proposed as an adaptive means of minimising information demands on WM. However the neural mechanisms underlying this process, and its modulation by task and load effects, are not well understood. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the neural correlates of feature binding and its modulation by WM load during the sequential phases of encoding, maintenance and retrieval. METHODS AND FINDINGS: 18 young healthy participants performed a visuospatial WM task with independent factors of load and feature conjunction (object identity and position in an event-related functional MRI study. During stimulus encoding, load-invariant conjunction-related activity was observed in left prefrontal cortex and left hippocampus. During maintenance, greater activity for task demands of feature conjunction versus single features, and for increased load was observed in left-sided regions of the superior occipital cortex, precuneus and superior frontal cortex. Where these effects were expressed in overlapping cortical regions, their combined effect was additive. During retrieval, however, an interaction of load and feature conjunction was observed. This modulation of feature conjunction activity under increased load was expressed through greater deactivation in medial structures identified as part of the default mode network. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: The relationship between memory load and feature binding qualitatively differed through each phase of the WM task. Of particular interest was the interaction of these factors observed within regions of the default mode network during retrieval which we interpret as suggesting that at low loads, binding processes may be 'automatic' but at higher loads it becomes a resource-intensive process leading to disengagement of activity in this

  6. Assessing the validity of computer-game-like tests of processing speed and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McPherson, Jason; Burns, Nicholas R

    2008-11-01

    Processing speed (Gs) and working memory (WM) tasks have received considerable interest as correlates of more complex cognitive performance measures. Gs and WM tasks are often repetitive and are often rigidly presented, however. The effects of Gs and WM may, therefore, be confounded with those of motivation and anxiety. In an effort to address this problem, we assessed the concurrent and predictive validity of computer-game-like tests of Gs (Space Code) and WM (Space Matrix) across two experiments. In Experiment 1, within a university sample (N = 70), Space Matrix exhibited concurrent validity as a WM measure, whereas Space Code appeared to be a mixed-ability measure. In Experiment 2, Space Matrix exhibited concurrent validity as well as predictive validity (as a predictor of school grades) within a school-aged sample (N = 94), but the results for Space Code were less encouraging. Relationships between computer-game-like tests and gender, handedness, and computer-game experience are also discussed.

  7. Math anxiety and developmental dyscalculia: A study on working memory processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammarella, Irene C; Hill, Francesca; Devine, Amy; Caviola, Sara; Szűcs, Dénes

    2015-01-01

    Although many children encounter difficulties in arithmetic, the underlying cognitive and emotive factors are still not fully understood. This study examined verbal and visuospatial short-term memory (STM) and working memory (WM) performance in children with developmental dyscalculia (DD) and high mathematics anxiety (MA) compared with typically developing (TD) children. Groups were matched on reading comprehension performance and IQ as well as on general anxiety. We aimed to test whether children with DD and MA were differently impaired in verbal and visuospatial STM and WM. Children were individually tested with four computerized tasks: two STM tasks (forward verbal and visuospatial recall) and two WM tasks (backward verbal and visuospatial recall). Relative to children with TD, those with DD did not show impairments on the forward or backward verbal tasks, but showed specific impairments in the visuospatial WM task. In contrast, children with MA were particularly impaired in the verbal WM task. Knowing the underlying cognitive processes that differentiate why children with DD and MA fail in math could have both educational and clinical implications.

  8. Emotion Processing Influences Working Memory Circuits in Pediatric Bipolar Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passarotti, Alessandra M.; Sweeney, John A.; Pavuluri, Mani N.

    2010-01-01

    Objective This fMRI study examined how working memory circuits are affected by face emotion processing in pediatric bipolar disorder (PBD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Methods Twenty-three patients with bipolar disorder, 14 patients with ADHD and 19 healthy controls (HC) (mean age = 13.36 ± 2.55) underwent an affective 2-back fMRI task with blocks of happy, angry and neutral faces. Results For angry vs neutral faces PBD patients, relative to ADHD patients, exhibited increased activation in subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and orbitofrontal cortex, and reduced activation in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and premotor cortex. Relative to HC the PBD group showed no increased activation and reduced activation at the junction of DLPFC and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC). Relative to HC the ADHD patients exhibited greater activation in DLPFC and reduced activation in ventral and medial PFC, pregenual ACC, striatum and temporo-parietal regions. For happy vs neutral faces, relative to ADHD the PBD group exhibited greater activation in bilateral caudate, and relative to HC it showed increased activation in DLPFC, striatal and parietal regions, and no reduced activation. The ADHD group, compared to HC, showed no reduced activation and increased activation in regions that were under-active for the angry face condition. Conclusions Relative to the ADHD group the PBD group exhibited greater deployment of the emotion processing circuitry and reduced deployment of working memory circuitry. Commonalities across PBD and ADHD patients, relative to HC, entailed cortico-subcortical activity that is reduced under negative emotional challenge, and increased under positive emotional challenge. PMID:20855051

  9. Levels of processing in working memory: differential involvement of frontotemporal networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Nathan S; Craik, Fergus I M; Buchsbaum, Bradley R

    2015-03-01

    How does the brain maintain to-be-remembered information in working memory (WM), particularly when the focus of attention is drawn to processing other information? Cognitive models of WM propose that when items are displaced from focal attention recall involves retrieval from long-term memory (LTM). In this fMRI study, we tried to clarify the role of LTM in performance on a WM task and the type of representation that is used to maintain an item in WM during rehearsal-filled versus distractor-filled delays. Participants made a deep or shallow levels-of-processing (LOP) decision about a single word at encoding and tried to recall the word after a delay filled with either rehearsal of the word or a distracting math task. Recalling one word after 10 sec of distraction demonstrated behavioral and neural indices of retrieval from LTM (i.e., LOP effects and medial-temporal lobe activity). In contrast, recall after rehearsal activated cortical areas that reflected reporting the word from focal attention. In addition, areas that showed an LOP effect at encoding (e.g., left ventrolateral VLPFC and the anterior temporal lobes [ATLs]) were reactivated at recall, especially when recall followed distraction. Moreover, activity in left VLPFC during encoding, left ATL during the delay, and left hippocampus during retrieval predicted recall success after distraction. Whereas shallow LOP and rehearsal-related areas supported active maintenance of one item in focal attention, the behavioral processes and neural substrates that support LTM supported recall of one item after it was displaced from focal attention.

  10. Cognitive Processing Speed, Working Memory, and the Intelligibility of Hearing Aid-Processed Speech in Persons with Hearing Impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wycliffe Kabaywe Yumba

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have demonstrated that successful listening with advanced signal processing in digital hearing aids is associated with individual cognitive capacity, particularly working memory capacity (WMC. This study aimed to examine the relationship between cognitive abilities (cognitive processing speed and WMC and individual listeners’ responses to digital signal processing settings in adverse listening conditions. A total of 194 native Swedish speakers (83 women and 111 men, aged 33–80 years (mean = 60.75 years, SD = 8.89, with bilateral, symmetrical mild to moderate sensorineural hearing loss who had completed a lexical decision speed test (measuring cognitive processing speed and semantic word-pair span test (SWPST, capturing WMC participated in this study. The Hagerman test (capturing speech recognition in noise was conducted using an experimental hearing aid with three digital signal processing settings: (1 linear amplification without noise reduction (NoP, (2 linear amplification with noise reduction (NR, and (3 non-linear amplification without NR (“fast-acting compression”. The results showed that cognitive processing speed was a better predictor of speech intelligibility in noise, regardless of the types of signal processing algorithms used. That is, there was a stronger association between cognitive processing speed and NR outcomes and fast-acting compression outcomes (in steady state noise. We observed a weaker relationship between working memory and NR, but WMC did not relate to fast-acting compression. WMC was a relatively weaker predictor of speech intelligibility in noise. These findings might have been different if the participants had been provided with training and or allowed to acclimatize to binary masking noise reduction or fast-acting compression.

  11. Cognitive Processing Speed, Working Memory, and the Intelligibility of Hearing Aid-Processed Speech in Persons with Hearing Impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yumba, Wycliffe Kabaywe

    2017-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated that successful listening with advanced signal processing in digital hearing aids is associated with individual cognitive capacity, particularly working memory capacity (WMC). This study aimed to examine the relationship between cognitive abilities (cognitive processing speed and WMC) and individual listeners' responses to digital signal processing settings in adverse listening conditions. A total of 194 native Swedish speakers (83 women and 111 men), aged 33-80 years (mean = 60.75 years, SD = 8.89), with bilateral, symmetrical mild to moderate sensorineural hearing loss who had completed a lexical decision speed test (measuring cognitive processing speed) and semantic word-pair span test (SWPST, capturing WMC) participated in this study. The Hagerman test (capturing speech recognition in noise) was conducted using an experimental hearing aid with three digital signal processing settings: (1) linear amplification without noise reduction (NoP), (2) linear amplification with noise reduction (NR), and (3) non-linear amplification without NR ("fast-acting compression"). The results showed that cognitive processing speed was a better predictor of speech intelligibility in noise, regardless of the types of signal processing algorithms used. That is, there was a stronger association between cognitive processing speed and NR outcomes and fast-acting compression outcomes (in steady state noise). We observed a weaker relationship between working memory and NR, but WMC did not relate to fast-acting compression. WMC was a relatively weaker predictor of speech intelligibility in noise. These findings might have been different if the participants had been provided with training and or allowed to acclimatize to binary masking noise reduction or fast-acting compression.

  12. Meta-analysis of the research impact of Baddeley's multicomponent working memory model and Cowan's embedded-processes model of working memory: A bibliometric mapping approach

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Aleksandra Gruszka; Jaroslaw Orzechowski

    2016-01-01

      In this study bibliometric mapping method was employed to visualise the current research trends and the impact of the two most influential models of working memory, namely: A. D. Baddeley and G. J. Hitch's (1974...

  13. Impaired Processing of Serial Order Determines Working Memory Impairments in Alzheimer's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Belder, Maya; Santens, Patrick; Sieben, Anne; Fias, Wim

    2017-01-01

    Working memory (WM) problems are commonly observed in Alzheimer's disease (AD), but the affected mechanisms leading to impaired WM are still insufficiently understood. The ability to efficiently process serial order in WM has been demonstrated to be fundamental to fluent daily life functioning. The decreased capability to mentally process serial position in WM has been put forward as the underlying explanation for generally compromised WM performance. Determine which mechanisms, such as order processing, are responsible for deficient WM functioning in AD. A group of AD patients (n = 32) and their partners (n = 25), assigned to the control group, were submitted to an extensive battery of neuropsychological and experimental tasks, assessing general cognitive state and functioning of several aspects related to serial order WM. The results revealed an impaired ability to bind item information to serial position within WM in AD patients compared to controls. It was additionally observed that AD patients experienced specific difficulties with directing spatial attention when searching for item information stored in WM. The processing of serial order and the allocation of attentional resources are both disrupted, explaining the generally reduced WM functioning in AD patients. Further studies should now clarify whether this observation could explain disease-related problems for other cognitive functions such as verbal expression, auditory comprehension, or planning.

  14. 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.

  15. Visual-spatial processing and working-memory load as a function of negative and positive psychotic-like experiences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abu-Akel, A; Reniers, R L E P; Wood, S J

    2016-09-01

    Patients with schizophrenia show impairments in working-memory and visual-spatial processing, but little is known about the dynamic interplay between the two. To provide insight into this important question, we examined the effect of positive and negative symptom expressions in healthy adults on perceptual processing while concurrently performing a working-memory task that requires the allocations of various degrees of cognitive resources. The effect of positive and negative symptom expressions in healthy adults (N = 91) on perceptual processing was examined in a dual-task paradigm of visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) under three conditions of cognitive load: a baseline condition (with no concurrent working-memory demand), a low VSWM load condition, and a high VSWM load condition. Participants overall performed more efficiently (i.e., faster) with increasing cognitive load. This facilitation in performance was unrelated to symptom expressions. However, participants with high-negative, low-positive symptom expressions were less accurate in the low VSWM condition compared to the baseline and the high VSWM load conditions. Attenuated, subclinical expressions of psychosis affect cognitive performance that is impaired in schizophrenia. The "resource limitations hypothesis" may explain the performance of the participants with high-negative symptom expressions. The dual-task of visual-spatial processing and working memory may be beneficial to assessing the cognitive phenotype of individuals with high risk for schizophrenia spectrum disorders.

  16. The impact of working memory and the "process of process modelling" on model quality: Investigating experienced versus inexperienced modellers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Markus; Pinggera, Jakob; Neurauter, Manuel; Sachse, Pierre; Furtner, Marco R; Weber, Barbara

    2016-05-09

    A process model (PM) represents the graphical depiction of a business process, for instance, the entire process from online ordering a book until the parcel is delivered to the customer. Knowledge about relevant factors for creating PMs of high quality is lacking. The present study investigated the role of cognitive processes as well as modelling processes in creating a PM in experienced and inexperienced modellers. Specifically, two working memory (WM) functions (holding and processing of information and relational integration) and three process of process modelling phases (comprehension, modelling, and reconciliation) were related to PM quality. Our results show that the WM function of relational integration was positively related to PM quality in both modelling groups. The ratio of comprehension phases was negatively related to PM quality in inexperienced modellers and the ratio of reconciliation phases was positively related to PM quality in experienced modellers. Our research reveals central cognitive mechanisms in process modelling and has potential practical implications for the development of modelling software and teaching the craft of process modelling.

  17. Age-related Decline in Case-Marker Processing and its Relation to Working Memory Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Jee Eun

    2017-09-01

    Purposes of the current study were to investigate whether age-related decline emerged in a case-marker assignment task (CMAT) and to explore the relationship between working-memory (WM) capacity and case-marker processing. A total of 121 individuals participated in the study with 62 younger adults and 59 elderly adults. All were administered a CMAT that consisted of active and passive constructions with canonical and noncanonical word-order conditions. A composite measure of WM tasks served as an index of participants' WM capacity. The older group performed worse than the younger group, and the noncanonical word order elicited worse performance than the canonical condition. The older group demonstrated greater difficulty in case-marker processing under the canonical condition and passive construction. Regression results revealed that age, education, and sentence type were the best predictors to account for performance on the CMAT. The canonicity of word order and passive construction were critical factors related to decline in abilities in a case-marker assignment. The combination of age, education, and sentence type factors accounted for overall performance on case-marker processing. Results indicated the crucial necessity to find a cognitively and linguistically demanding condition that elicits aging effects most efficiently, considering language-specific syntactic features.

  18. Effects of emotional stimuli on working memory processes in male criminal offenders with borderline and antisocial personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prehn, Kristin; Schulze, Lars; Rossmann, Sabine; Berger, Christoph; Vohs, Knut; Fleischer, Monika; Hauenstein, Karlheinz; Keiper, Peter; Domes, Gregor; Herpertz, Sabine C

    2013-02-01

    OBJECTIVE. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the influence of concurrently presented emotional stimuli on cognitive task processing in violent criminal offenders primarily characterized by affective instability. METHODS. Fifteen male criminal offenders with antisocial and borderline personality disorder (ASPD and BPD) and 17 healthy controls underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while performing a working memory task with low and high working memory load. In a second experimental run, to investigate the interaction of emotion and cognition, we presented emotionally neutral, low, or high salient social scenes in the background of the task. RESULTS. During the memory task without pictures, both groups did not differ in general task performance and neural representation of working memory processes. During the memory task with emotional background pictures, however, ASPD-BPD subjects compared to healthy controls showed delayed responses and enhanced activation of the left amygdala in the presence of emotionally high salient pictures independent of working memory load. CONCLUSIONS. These results illustrate an interaction of emotion and cognition in affective instable individuals with enhanced reactivity to emotionally salient stimuli which might be an important factor regarding the understanding of aggressive and violent behaviour in these individuals.

  19. Individual Differences in Working Memory, Nonverbal IQ, and Mathematics Achievement and Brain Mechanisms Associated with Symbolic and Nonsymbolic Number Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gullick, Margaret M.; Sprute, Lisa A.; Temple, Elise

    2011-01-01

    Individual differences in mathematics performance may stem from domain-general factors like working memory and intelligence. Parietal and frontal brain areas have been implicated in number processing, but the influence of such cognitive factors on brain activity during mathematics processing is not known. The relationship between brain mechanisms…

  20. 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...

  1. Working Memory Is Related to Perceptual Processing: A Case from Color Perception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Elizabeth C.; Beilock, Sian L.; Shevell, Steven K.

    2011-01-01

    We explored the relation between individual differences in working memory (WM) and color constancy, the phenomenon of color perception that allows us to perceive the color of an object as relatively stable under changes in illumination. Successive color constancy (measured by first viewing a colored surface under a particular illumination and…

  2. Working memory in nonsymbolic approximate arithmetic processing: A dual-task study with preschoolers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Xenidou-Dervou, I.; van Lieshout, E.C.D.M.; van der Schoot, M.

    2014-01-01

    Preschool children have been proven to possess nonsymbolic approximate arithmetic skills before learning how to manipulate symbolic math and thus before any formal math instruction. It has been assumed that nonsymbolic approximate math tasks necessitate the allocation of Working Memory (WM)

  3. Working memory in schizophrenia : A systematic study of specific modalities and processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quee, Piotr J.; Eling, Paul A. T. M.; van der Heijden, Frank M. M. A.; Hildebrandt, Helmut

    2011-01-01

    Although many researchers agree that working memory (WM) impairments are a core symptom of schizophrenia, it remains unclear how the disturbances on specific WM components relate to one another. In this study, we presented a Delayed-Matching-To-Sample task to 24 schizophrenia patients and 24 healthy

  4. Working memory in schizophrenia: A systematic study of specific modalities and processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quee, P.J.; Eling, P.A.T.M.; Heijden, F.M.M.A. van der; Hildebrandt, H.

    2011-01-01

    Although many researchers agree that working memory (WM) impairments are a core symptom of schizophrenia, it remains unclear how the disturbances on specific WM components relate to one another. In this study, we presented a Delayed-Matching-To-Sample task to 24 schizophrenia patients and 24 healthy

  5. Effects of working memory span on processing of lexical associations and congruence in spoken discourse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boudewyn, Megan A; Long, Debra L; Swaab, Tamara Y

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this study was to determine whether variability in working memory (WM) capacity and cognitive control affects the processing of global discourse congruence and local associations among words when participants listened to short discourse passages. The final, critical word of each passage was either associated or unassociated with a preceding prime word (e.g., "He was not prepared for the fame and fortune/praise"). These critical words were also either congruent or incongruent with respect to the preceding discourse context [e.g., a context in which a prestigious prize was won (congruent) or in which the protagonist had been arrested (incongruent)]. We used multiple regression to assess the unique contribution of suppression ability (our measure of cognitive control) and WM capacity on the amplitude of individual N400 effects of congruence and association. Our measure of suppression ability did not predict the size of the N400 effects of association or congruence. However, as expected, the results showed that high WM capacity individuals were less sensitive to the presence of lexical associations (showed smaller N400 association effects). Furthermore, differences in WM capacity were related to differences in the topographic distribution of the N400 effects of discourse congruence. The topographic differences in the global congruence effects indicate differences in the underlying neural generators of the N400 effects, as a function of WM. This suggests additional, or at a minimum, distinct, processing on the part of higher capacity individuals when tasked with integrating incoming words into the developing discourse representation.

  6. Attention training improves aberrant neural dynamics during working memory processing in veterans with PTSD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, Timothy J; Badura-Brack, Amy S; Becker, Katherine M; Ryan, Tara J; Bar-Haim, Yair; Pine, Daniel S; Khanna, Maya M; Heinrichs-Graham, Elizabeth; Wilson, Tony W

    2016-12-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with executive functioning deficits, including disruptions in working memory (WM). Recent studies suggest that attention training reduces PTSD symptomatology, but the underlying neural mechanisms are unknown. We used high-density magnetoencephalography (MEG) to evaluate whether attention training modulates brain regions serving WM processing in PTSD. Fourteen veterans with PTSD completed a WM task during a 306-sensor MEG recording before and after 8 sessions of attention training treatment. A matched comparison sample of 12 combat-exposed veterans without PTSD completed the same WM task during a single MEG session. To identify the spatiotemporal dynamics, each group's data were transformed into the time-frequency domain, and significant oscillatory brain responses were imaged using a beamforming approach. All participants exhibited activity in left hemispheric language areas consistent with a verbal WM task. Additionally, veterans with PTSD and combat-exposed healthy controls each exhibited oscillatory responses in right hemispheric homologue regions (e.g., right Broca's area); however, these responses were in opposite directions. Group differences in oscillatory activity emerged in the theta band (4-8 Hz) during encoding and in the alpha band (9-12 Hz) during maintenance and were significant in right prefrontal and right supramarginal and inferior parietal regions. Importantly, following attention training, these significant group differences were reduced or eliminated. This study provides initial evidence that attention training improves aberrant neural activity in brain networks serving WM processing.

  7. Differential contributions of dorsolateral and frontopolar cortices to working memory processes in the primate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erica A. Boschin

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The ability to maintain and manipulate information across temporal delays is a fundamental requirement to bridge the gap between perception and action. In the case of higher-order behavior, the maintenance of rules and strategies is particularly helpful in bridging this gap. The prefrontal cortex (PFC has long been considered critical for such processes, and research has focused on different subdivisions of PFC to gain an insight into their diverse contributions to these mechanisms. Substantial evidence indicates that dorsolateral PFC (dlPFC is an important structure for maintaining information across delays, with cells actively firing across delays and lesions to this region causing deficits in tasks involving delayed responses and maintenance of rules online. Frontopolar cortex (FP, on the other hand, appears to show the opposite pattern of results, with cells not firing across delays and lesions to this region not affecting the same rule-based, delayed response tasks that are impaired following dlPFC lesions. The body of evidence therefore suggests that dlPFC and FP’s contributions to working memory differ. In this article, we will provide a perspective on how these regions might implement distinct but complementary and interactive functions that contribute to more general temporally-extended processes and support flexible, dynamic behavior.

  8. The role of trauma-related distractors on neural systems for working memory and emotion processing in posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morey, Rajendra A; Dolcos, Florin; Petty, Christopher M; Cooper, Debra A; Hayes, Jasmeet Pannu; LaBar, Kevin S; McCarthy, Gregory

    2009-05-01

    The relevance of emotional stimuli to threat and survival confers a privileged role in their processing. In PTSD, the ability of trauma-related information to divert attention is especially pronounced. Information unrelated to the trauma may also be highly distracting when it shares perceptual features with trauma material. Our goal was to study how trauma-related environmental cues modulate working memory networks in PTSD. We examined neural activity in participants performing a visual working memory task while distracted by task-irrelevant trauma and non-trauma material. Recent post-9/11 veterans were divided into a PTSD group (n=22) and a trauma-exposed control group (n=20) based on the Davidson trauma scale. Using fMRI, we measured hemodynamic change in response to emotional (trauma-related) and neutral distraction presented during the active maintenance period of a delayed-response working memory task. The goal was to examine differences in functional networks associated with working memory (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and lateral parietal cortex) and emotion processing (amygdala, ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, and fusiform gyrus). The PTSD group showed markedly different neural activity compared to the trauma-exposed control group in response to task-irrelevant visual distractors. Enhanced activity in ventral emotion processing regions was associated with trauma distractors in the PTSD group, whereas activity in brain regions associated with working memory and attention regions was disrupted by distractor stimuli independent of trauma content. Neural evidence for the impact of distraction on working memory is consistent with PTSD symptoms of hypervigilance and general distractibility during goal-directed cognitive processing.

  9. 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

  10. Emotion perception and executive control interact in the salience network during emotionally charged working memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Yu; Qin, Shaozheng; Fernández, Guillén; Zhang, Yu; Klumpers, Floris; Li, Hong

    2014-11-01

    Processing of emotional stimuli can either hinder or facilitate ongoing working memory (WM); however, the neural basis of these effects remains largely unknown. Here we examined the neural mechanisms of these paradoxical effects by implementing a novel emotional WM task in an fMRI study. Twenty-five young healthy participants performed an N-back task with fearful and neutral faces as stimuli. Participants made more errors when performing 0-back task with fearful versus neutral faces, whereas they made fewer errors when performing 2-back task with fearful versus neutral faces. These emotional impairment and enhancement on behavioral performance paralleled significant interactions in distributed regions in the salience network including anterior insula (AI) and dorsal cingulate cortex (dACC), as well as in emotion perception network including amygdala and temporal-occipital association cortex (TOC). The dorsal AI (dAI) and dACC were more activated when comparing fearful with neutral faces in 0-back task. Contrarily, dAI showed reduced activation, while TOC and amygdala showed stronger responses to fearful as compared to neutral faces in the 2-back task. These findings provide direct neural evidence to the emerging dual competition model suggesting that the salience network plays a critical role in mediating interaction between emotion perception and executive control when facing ever-changing behavioral demands. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Visuo-spatial processing in a dynamic and a static working memory paradigm in schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cocchi, Luca; Schenk, Françoise; Volken, Henri

    2007-01-01

    patients with schizophrenia and matched controls in a new working memory paradigm involving dynamic (the Ball Flight Task - BFT) or static (the Static Pattern Task - SPT) visual stimuli. In the BFT, the responses of the patients were apparently based on the retention of the last set of segments...... of the perceived trajectory, whereas control subjects relied on a more global strategy. We assume that the patients' performances are the result of a reduced capacity in chunking visual information since they relied mainly on the retention of the last set of segments. This assumption is confirmed by the poor...... that visuo-spatial working memory can simply be dissociated into visual and spatial sub-components....

  13. Increased brain activation during working memory processing after pediatric mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westfall, Daniel R.; West, John D.; Bailey, Jessica N.; Arnold, Todd W.; Kersey, Patrick A.; Saykin, Andrew J.; McDonald, Brenna C.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The neural substrate of post-concussive symptoms following the initial injury period after mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) in pediatric populations remains poorly elucidated. This study examined neuropsychological, behavioral, and brain functioning in adolescents post-mTBI to assess whether persistent differences were detectable up to a year post-injury. Methods Nineteen adolescents (mean age 14.7 years) who experienced mTBI 3–12 months previously (mean 7.5 months) and 19 matched healthy controls (mean age 14.0 years) completed neuropsychological testing and an fMRI auditory-verbal N-back working memory task. Parents completed behavioral ratings. Results No between-group differences were found for cognition, behavior, or N-back task performance, though the expected decreased accuracy and increased reaction time as task difficulty increased were apparent. However, the mTBI group showed significantly greater brain activation than controls during the most difficult working memory task condition. Conclusion Greater working memory task-related activation was found in adolescents up to one year post-mTBI relative to controls, potentially indicating compensatory activation to support normal task performance. Differences in brain activation in the mTBI group so long after injury may indicate residual alterations in brain function much later than would be expected based on the typical pattern of natural recovery, which could have important clinical implications. PMID:26684070

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the effects of 10 hours 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 execute...

  15. Visuo-spatialWorking Memory as a Limited Resource of Cognitive Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmer, Hubert D.; Münzer, Stefan; Umla-Runge, Katja

    Working memory is considered a cognitive component that mainly serves two functions. It temporarily maintains information that was either perceived but is no longer present in the environment, or that was internally generated, and it supplies a work space for transforming and manipulating elements of perception and thinking. Both functions are relevant for a successful interaction with the environment and it is therefore not surprising that WM is a central topic of research in the field of general psychology. This interest is further increased by the fact that WM is seen as a limited resource that constrains cognitive performances.

  16. [Processing acoustically presented time intervals of seconds duration: an expression of the phonological loop of the working memory?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grube, D

    1996-01-01

    Working memory has been proposed to contribute to the processing of time, rhythm and music; the question which component of working memory is involved is under discussion. The present study tests the hypothesis that the phonological loop component (Baddeley, 1986) is involved in the processing of auditorily presented time intervals of a few seconds' duration. Typical effects well known with short-term retention of verbal material could be replicated with short-term retention of temporal intervals: The immediate reproduction of time intervals was impaired under conditions of background music and articulatory suppression. Neither the accuracy nor the speed of responses in a (non-phonological) mental rotation task were diminished under these conditions. Processing of auditorily presented time intervals seems to be constrained by the capacity of the phonological loop: The immediate serial recall of sequences of time intervals was shown to be related to the immediate serial recall of words (memory span). The results confirm the notion that working memory resources, and especially the phonological loop component, underlie the processing of auditorily presented temporal information with a duration of a few seconds.

  17. 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...

  18. How do selective attentional processes contribute to maintenance and recall in children’s working memory capacity?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah Elizabeth Roome

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The development of working memory capacity is considered from the perspective of the active maintenance of items in primary memory (PM and a cue-dependent search component, secondary memory (SM. Using, free recall, plus a more novel serial interleaved items task, age-related increases in PM estimates were evident in both paradigms. In addition to this, age-related improvements in attentional selectivity were observed, indexed by the recall of target and non-target information respectively. To further characterize PM, presentation modality was varied in the serial interleaved items task (auditory, visual and dual presentation. Developmental differences were found in the effectiveness of presentation formats. Older children’s recall was enhanced by the combination of labeled visual items and enduring auditory information, whilst the same format was detrimental to younger children’s recall of target information. The present results show how estimates of PM and SM in children relate to the development of working memory capacity, but measurement of these constructs in children is not straightforward. Data also points to age related changes in selective attention, which in turn contributes to children’s ability to process and maintain information in working memory.

  19. [Age-related changes in processing and retention in visual working memory on the N-back task].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunimi, Mitsunobu; Matsukawa, Junko

    2009-06-01

    Age-related changes in processing and retention in visual working memory were examined using visual stimuli that do not allow for verbal-name coding. Participants ranged in age from their 20s to 70s, and data was analyzed using the cross-sectional cohort method. The N-back task was used, and results from the 0-back task (recognition of the last of the continuously presented stimuli) and the 1-back task (recognition of the penultimate stimulus) were compared. The results showed a sudden decrease in performance on the 0-back task for participants in their 60s, and a relatively linear decrease on the 1-back task from the 30s. These results suggest that aging-related changes in visual working memory reflect a decrease in processing speed. They also suggests that the functions of "simple retention" and "processive retention" are different.

  20. Understanding the Relative Contributions of Lower-Level Word Processes, Higher-Level Processes, and Working Memory to Reading Comprehension Performance in Proficient Adult Readers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hannon, Brenda

    2012-01-01

    Although a considerable amount of evidence has been amassed regarding the contributions of lower-level word processes, higher-level processes, and working memory to reading comprehension, little is known about the relationships among these sources of individual differences or their relative contributions to reading comprehension performance. This…

  1. The Effect of Keyboard-Based Word Processing on Students with Different Working Memory Capacity during the Process of Academic Writing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Der Steen, Steffie; Samuelson, Dianne; Thomson, Jennifer M.

    2017-01-01

    This study addresses the current debate about the beneficial effects of text processing software on students with different working memory (WM) during the process of academic writing, especially with regard to the ability to display higher-level conceptual thinking. A total of 54 graduate students (15 male, 39 female) wrote one essay by hand and…

  2. The Effect of Keyboard-Based Word Processing on Students With Different Working Memory Capacity During the Process of Academic Writing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van der Steen, Steffie; Samuelson, Dianne; Thomson, Jennifer M.

    This study addresses the current debate about the beneficial effects of text processing software on students with different working memory (WM) during the process of academic writing, especially with regard to the ability to display higher-level conceptual thinking. A total of 54 graduate students

  3. 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).

  4. Processing Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy Signal with a Kalman Filter to Assess Working Memory during Simulated Flight.

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    Gautier eDurantin

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Working memory is a key executive function for operating aircraft, especially when pilots have to recall series of air traffic control instructions. There is a need to implement tools to monitor working memory as its limitation may jeopardize flight safety. An innovative way to address this issue is to adopt a Neuroergonomics approach that merges knowledge and methods from Human Factors, System Engineering and Neuroscience. A challenge of great importance for Neuroergonomics is to implement efficient brain imaging techniques to measure the brain at work and to design Brain Computer Interfaces. We used functional near infrared spectroscopy as it has been already successfully tested to measure working memory capacity in complex environment with air traffic controllers, pilots or unmanned vehicle operators. However, the extraction of relevant features from the raw signal in ecological environment is still a critical issue due to the complexity of implementing real-time signal processing techniques without a priori knowledge. We proposed to implement the Kalman filtering approach, a signal processing technique that is efficient when the dynamics of the signal can be modeled. We based our approach on the Boynton model of hemodynamic response. We conducted a first experiment with 9 participants involving a basic working memory task to estimate the noise covariances of the Kalman filter. We then conducted a more ecological experiment in our flight simulator with 18 pilots who interacted with air traffic controller instructions (two levels of difficulty. The data was processed with the same Kalman filter settings implemented in the first experiment. This filter was benchmarked with a classical pass-band IIR filter and a Moving Average Convergence Divergence filter. Statistical analysis revealed that the Kalman filter was the most efficient to separate the two levels of load, by increasing the observed effect size in prefrontal areas involved in working

  5. Event-related potential (ERP) measures reveal the timing of memory selection processes and proactive interference resolution in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Yuji; Friedman, David

    2011-09-09

    Behavioral studies show that no-longer-relevant information, although presumably removed from working memory (WM), still engenders proactive interference (PI). However, the timing of selecting items within WM and resolving PI is relatively unknown. To assess this, we recorded ERPs during WM from 20 young adults. In all conditions, a 4-digit display was followed by a cue indicating which digits to remember. In the selection condition, 2 digits were cued. The reaction time difference between the intrusion probe, a match of a to-be-rejected digit, and the non-intrusion probe, which did not match any of the 4 digits, was reliable, indicating a robust effect of PI. In the neutral-2 (remember 2 digits) and -4 (remember all 4) conditions, participants maintained the digits following the cue. Relative to neutral-4, selection elicited larger positivity at parietal sites (approximately 260ms) and negativity at frontal sites (approximately 420ms). Relative to the non-intrusion probe ERP, that to the intrusion probe was more negative over frontal scalp (approximately 500ms). We conclude that initial selection occurs over parietal cortex and reflects top-down attention to task relevant items, whereas the subsequent negativity may reflect inhibition of no-longer-relevant items over frontal cortex. The probe-locked ERPs suggest that the frontal negativity (approximately 500ms) reflects the final resolution of PI. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Multifractal analysis of information processing in hippocampal neural ensembles during working memory under Δ⁹-tetrahydrocannabinol administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fetterhoff, Dustin; Opris, Ioan; Simpson, Sean L; Deadwyler, Sam A; Hampson, Robert E; Kraft, Robert A

    2015-04-15

    Multifractal analysis quantifies the time-scale-invariant properties in data by describing the structure of variability over time. By applying this analysis to hippocampal interspike interval sequences recorded during performance of a working memory task, a measure of long-range temporal correlations and multifractal dynamics can reveal single neuron correlates of information processing. Wavelet leaders-based multifractal analysis (WLMA) was applied to hippocampal interspike intervals recorded during a working memory task. WLMA can be used to identify neurons likely to exhibit information processing relevant to operation of brain-computer interfaces and nonlinear neuronal models. Neurons involved in memory processing ("Functional Cell Types" or FCTs) showed a greater degree of multifractal firing properties than neurons without task-relevant firing characteristics. In addition, previously unidentified FCTs were revealed because multifractal analysis suggested further functional classification. The cannabinoid type-1 receptor (CB1R) partial agonist, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), selectively reduced multifractal dynamics in FCT neurons compared to non-FCT neurons. WLMA is an objective tool for quantifying the memory-correlated complexity represented by FCTs that reveals additional information compared to classification of FCTs using traditional z-scores to identify neuronal correlates of behavioral events. z-Score-based FCT classification provides limited information about the dynamical range of neuronal activity characterized by WLMA. Increased complexity, as measured with multifractal analysis, may be a marker of functional involvement in memory processing. The level of multifractal attributes can be used to differentially emphasize neural signals to improve computational models and algorithms underlying brain-computer interfaces. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. The effects of long-term stress on neural dynamics of working memory processing: An investigation using ERP

    OpenAIRE

    Yiran Yuan; Leung, Ada W. S.; Hongxia Duan; Liang Zhang; Kan Zhang; Jianhui Wu; Shaozheng Qin

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the neural dynamics of working memory (WM) processing under long-term stress. Forty participants who had been exposed to a long period of major exam preparation (six months) and twenty-one control participants performed a numerical n-back task (n?=?1,?2) while electroencephalograms were recorded. Psychological and endocrinal measurements confirmed significantly higher levels of long-term stress for participants in the exam group. The exam group showed significantly increas...

  8. 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.

  9. Spatial and object working memory deficits in Parkinson's disease are due to impairment in different underlying processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Possin, Katherine L; Filoteo, J Vincent; Song, David D; Salmon, David P

    2008-09-01

    Working memory maintenance processes for visual-spatial and visual-object information were evaluated in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). PD patients and controls performed a working memory task with two conditions that differed only in the aspect of the stimuli that the participant was instructed to remember: their locations or shapes. Maintenance processes were investigated by measuring accuracy over 1-s, 5-s, and 10-s delays. Results indicated that patients were impaired in maintaining object information over the delay. In contrast, the patients showed impairment on the spatial condition only when the to-be-remembered stimulus was highly similar in location to the probe, but this impairment was equivalent across the delays, suggesting that this deficit was not due to maintenance impairment. These results suggest that deficits in working memory for spatial and object information are mediated by distinct cognitive processes in nondemented patients with PD and may differ in their pathophysiological basis. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved.

  10. Brain training game boosts executive functions, working memory and processing speed in the young adults: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouchi, Rui; Taki, Yasuyuki; Takeuchi, Hikaru; Hashizume, Hiroshi; Nozawa, Takayuki; Kambara, Toshimune; Sekiguchi, Atsushi; Miyauchi, Carlos Makoto; Kotozaki, Yuka; Nouchi, Haruka; Kawashima, Ryuta

    2013-01-01

    Do brain training games work? The beneficial effects of brain training games are expected to transfer to other cognitive functions. Yet in all honesty, beneficial transfer effects of the commercial brain training games in young adults have little scientific basis. Here we investigated the impact of the brain training game (Brain Age) on a wide range of cognitive functions in young adults. We conducted a double-blind (de facto masking) randomized controlled trial using a popular brain training game (Brain Age) and a popular puzzle game (Tetris). Thirty-two volunteers were recruited through an advertisement in the local newspaper and randomly assigned to either of two game groups (Brain Age, Tetris). Participants in both the Brain Age and the Tetris groups played their game for about 15 minutes per day, at least 5 days per week, for 4 weeks. Measures of the cognitive functions were conducted before and after training. Measures of the cognitive functions fell into eight categories (fluid intelligence, executive function, working memory, short-term memory, attention, processing speed, visual ability, and reading ability). Our results showed that commercial brain training game improves executive functions, working memory, and processing speed in young adults. Moreover, the popular puzzle game can engender improvement attention and visuo-spatial ability compared to playing the brain training game. The present study showed the scientific evidence which the brain training game had the beneficial effects on cognitive functions (executive functions, working memory and processing speed) in the healthy young adults. Our results do not indicate that everyone should play brain training games. However, the commercial brain training game might be a simple and convenient means to improve some cognitive functions. We believe that our findings are highly relevant to applications in educational and clinical fields. UMIN Clinical Trial Registry 000005618.

  11. Brain training game boosts executive functions, working memory and processing speed in the young adults: a randomized controlled trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Nouchi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Do brain training games work? The beneficial effects of brain training games are expected to transfer to other cognitive functions. Yet in all honesty, beneficial transfer effects of the commercial brain training games in young adults have little scientific basis. Here we investigated the impact of the brain training game (Brain Age on a wide range of cognitive functions in young adults. METHODS: We conducted a double-blind (de facto masking randomized controlled trial using a popular brain training game (Brain Age and a popular puzzle game (Tetris. Thirty-two volunteers were recruited through an advertisement in the local newspaper and randomly assigned to either of two game groups (Brain Age, Tetris. Participants in both the Brain Age and the Tetris groups played their game for about 15 minutes per day, at least 5 days per week, for 4 weeks. Measures of the cognitive functions were conducted before and after training. Measures of the cognitive functions fell into eight categories (fluid intelligence, executive function, working memory, short-term memory, attention, processing speed, visual ability, and reading ability. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: Our results showed that commercial brain training game improves executive functions, working memory, and processing speed in young adults. Moreover, the popular puzzle game can engender improvement attention and visuo-spatial ability compared to playing the brain training game. The present study showed the scientific evidence which the brain training game had the beneficial effects on cognitive functions (executive functions, working memory and processing speed in the healthy young adults. CONCLUSIONS: Our results do not indicate that everyone should play brain training games. However, the commercial brain training game might be a simple and convenient means to improve some cognitive functions. We believe that our findings are highly relevant to applications in educational and clinical fields

  12. Working memory moderates the effect of the integrative process of implicit and explicit autonomous motivation on academic achievement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gareau, Alexandre; Gaudreau, Patrick

    2017-11-01

    In previous research, autonomous motivation (AM) has been found to be associated with school achievement, but the relation has been largely heterogeneous across studies. AM has typically been assessed with explicit measures such as self-report questionnaires. Recent self-determination theory (SDT) research has suggested that converging implicit and explicit measures can be taken to characterize the integrative process in SDT. Drawing from dual-process theories, we contended that explicit AM is likely to promote school achievement when it is part of an integrated cognitive system that combines easily accessible mental representations (i.e., implicit AM) and efficient executive functioning. A sample of 272 university students completed a questionnaire and a lexical decision task to assess their explicit and implicit AM, respectively, and they also completed working memory capacity measures. Grades were obtained at the end of the semester to examine the short-term prospective effect of implicit and explicit AM, working memory, and their interaction. Results of moderation analyses have provided support for a synergistic interaction in which the association between explicit AM and academic achievement was positive and significant only for individuals with high level of implicit AM. Moreover, working memory was moderating the synergistic effect of explicit and implicit AM. Explicit AM was positively associated with academic achievement for students with average-to-high levels of working memory capacity, but only if their motivation operated synergistically with high implicit AM. The integrative process thus seems to hold better proprieties for achievement than the sole effect of explicit AM. Implications for SDT are outlined. © 2017 The British Psychological Society.

  13. Working memory load attenuates emotional enhancement in recognition memory

    OpenAIRE

    Ewa Aurelia Miendlarzewska; Gijs eVan Elswijk; Carlo Vittorio Cannistraci; Raymond evan Ee

    2013-01-01

    Emotionally arousing stimuli are perceived and remembered better than neutral stimuli. Under threat, this negativity bias is further increased. We investigated whether working memory load can attenuate incidental memory for emotional images. Two groups of participants performed the N-back task with two working memory load levels. In one group, we induced anxiety using a threat-of-shock paradigm to increase attentional processing of negative information. During task performance we incidentally...

  14. Retrieval and Monitoring Processes during Visual Working Memory: An ERP Study of the Benefit of Visual Semantics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Orme

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we examined electrophysiological indices of episodic remembering whilst participants recalled novel shapes, with and without semantic content, within a visual working memory paradigm. The components of interest were the parietal episodic (PE; 400–800 ms and late posterior negativity (LPN; 500–900 ms, as these have previously been identified as reliable markers of recollection and post-retrieval monitoring, respectively. Fifteen young adults completed a visual matrix patterns task, assessing memory for low and high semantic visual representations. Matrices with either low semantic or high semantic content (containing familiar visual forms were briefly presented to participants for study (1500 ms, followed by a retention interval (6000 ms and finally a same/different recognition phase. The event-related potentials of interest were tracked from the onset of the recognition test stimuli. Analyses revealed equivalent amplitude for the earlier PE effect for the processing of both low and high semantic stimulus types. However, the LPN was more negative-going for the processing of the low semantic stimuli. These data are discussed in terms of relatively ‘pure’ and complete retrieval of high semantic items, where support can readily be recruited from semantic memory. However, for the low semantic items additional executive resources, as indexed by the LPN, are recruited when memory monitoring and uncertainty exist in order to recall previously studied items more effectively.

  15. Field Dependence, Efficiency of Information Processing in Working Memory and Susceptibility to Orientation Illusions among Architects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Młyniec Agnieszka

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This study examined cognitive predictors of susceptibility to orientation illusions: Poggendorff, Ponzo, and Zöllner. It was assumed that lower efficiency of information processing in WM and higher field dependence are conducive to orientation illusions. 61 architects (30 women aged M = 29, +/- 1.6, and 49 university students (29 women aged M = 23.53, +/- 4.24, were tested with Witkin’s EFT to assess their field dependence; the SWATT method was used as a measure of WM efficiency, and susceptibility to visual illusions was verified with a series of computer tasks. We obtained a small range of the explained variance in the regression models including FDI and WM indicators. On the basis of WM efficiency indicators, we managed to confirm the existence of memory predictors of susceptibility to illusions (they are rather weak, as they explain from 6% to 14% of the variance of the dependent variable. Among the architects, lower efficiency of WM processing (weaker inhibition, task-switching and higher field dependence are responsible for greater susceptibility to orientation illusions.

  16. 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…

  17. Working memory effects in speeded RSVP tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil-Gómez de Liaño, Beatriz; Potter, Mary C; Rodríguez, Carmen

    2014-01-01

    The present paper examines the effects of memory contents and memory load in rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) speeded tasks, trying to explain previous inconsistent results. We used a one target (Experiment 1) and a two-target (Experiment 2) RSVP task with a concurrent memory load of one or four items, in a dual-task paradigm. A relation between material in working memory and the target in the RSVP impaired the identification of the target. In Experiments 3 and 4, the single task was to determine whether any information in memory matched the target in the RSVP, while varying the memory load. A match was detected faster than a non-match, although only when there was some distance between targets in the RSVP (Experiment 4). The results suggest that memory contents automatically capture attention, slowing processing when the memory contents are irrelevant to the task, and speeding processing when they are relevant.

  18. Working Memory as Internal Attention: Toward an Integrative Account of Internal and External Selection Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiyonaga, Anastasia; Egner, Tobias

    2012-01-01

    Working memory (WM) and attention have been studied as separate cognitive constructs, although it has long been acknowledged that attention plays an important role in controlling the activation, maintenance, and manipulation of representations in WM. WM has, conversely, been thought of as a means of maintaining representations to voluntarily guide perceptual selective attention. It has more recently been observed, however, that the contents of WM can capture visual attention, even when such internally maintained representations are irrelevant, and often disruptive, to the immediate external task. Thus the precise relationship between WM and attention remains unclear, but it appears that they may bi-directionally impact one another, whether or not internal representations are consistent with external perceptual goals. This reciprocal relationship seems, further, to be constrained by limited cognitive resources to handle demands in either maintenance or selection. We propose here that the close relationship between WM and attention may be best described as a give-and-take interdependence between attention directed toward actively maintained internal representations (traditionally considered WM) versus external perceptual stimuli (traditionally considered selective attention), underpinned by their shared reliance on a common cognitive resource. Put simply, we argue that WM and attention should no longer be considered as separate systems or concepts, but as competing and impacting one another because they rely on the same limited resource. This framework can offer an explanation for the capture of visual attention by irrelevant WM contents, as well as a straightforward account of the underspecified relationship between WM and attention. PMID:23233157

  19. Between-Person and Within-Person Associations among Processing Speed, Attention Switching and Working Memory in Younger and Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stawski, Robert S.; Sliwinski, Martin J.; Hofer, Scott M.

    2013-01-01

    Background/Study Context Theories of cognitive aging predict associations among processes that transpire within individuals, but are often tested by examining between-person relationships. The authors provide an empirical demonstration of how associations among measures of processing speed, attention switching, and working memory are different when considered between persons versus within persons over time. Methods A sample of 108 older adults (Mage: 80.8, range: 66–95) and 68 younger adults (Mage: 20.2, range:18–24) completed measures of processing speed, attention switching, and working memory on six occasions over a 14-day period. Multilevel modeling was used to examine processing speed and attention switching performance as predictors of working memory performance simultaneously across days (within-person) and across individuals (between-person). Results The findings indicates that simple comparison and response speed predicted working memory better than attention switching between persons, whereas attention switching predicted working memory better than simple comparison and response speed within persons over time. Furthermore, the authors did not observe strong evidence of age differences in these associations either within or between persons. Conclusion The findings of the current study suggest that processing speed is important for understanding between-person and age-related differences in working memory, whereas attention switching is more important for understanding within-person variation in working memory. The authors conclude that theories of cognitive aging should be evaluated by analysis of within-person processes, not exclusively age-related individual differences. PMID:23421639

  20. Between-person and within-person associations among processing speed, attention switching, and working memory in younger and older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stawski, Robert S; Sliwinski, Martin J; Hofer, Scott M

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND/STUDY CONTEXT: Theories of cognitive aging predict associations among processes that transpire within individuals, but are often tested by examining between-person relationships. The authors provide an empirical demonstration of how associations among measures of processing speed, attention switching, and working memory are different when considered between persons versus within persons over time. A sample of 108 older adults (M (age) = 80.8, range = 66-95) and 68 younger adults (M (age) = 20.2, range = 18-24) completed measures of processing speed, attention switching, and working memory on six occasions over a 14-day period. Multilevel modeling was used to examine processing speed and attention switching performance as predictors of working memory performance simultaneously across days (within-person) and across individuals (between-person). The findings indicates that simple comparison and response speed predicted working memory better than attention switching between persons, whereas attention switching predicted working memory better than simple comparison and response speed within persons over time. Furthermore, the authors did not observe strong evidence of age differences in these associations either within or between persons. The findings of the current study suggest that processing speed is important for understanding between-person and age-related differences in working memory, whereas attention switching is more important for understanding within-person variation in working memory. The authors conclude that theories of cognitive aging should be evaluated by analysis of within-person processes, not exclusively age-related individual differences.

  1. Influence of COMT val158met genotype on the depressed brain during emotional processing and working memory.

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    Esther M Opmeer

    Full Text Available Major depressive disorder (MDD has been associated with abnormal prefrontal-limbic interactions and altered catecholaminergic neurotransmission. The val158met polymorphism on the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT gene has been shown to influence prefrontal cortex (PFC activation during both emotional processing and working memory (WM. Although COMT-genotype is not directly associated with MDD, it may affect MDD pathology by altering PFC activation, an endophenotype associated with both COMT and MDD. 125 participants, including healthy controls (HC, n=28 and MDD patients were genotyped for the COMT val158met polymorphism and underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI-neuroimaging during emotion processing (viewing of emotional facial expressions and a WM task (visuospatial planning. Within HC, we observed a positive correlation between the number of met-alleles and right inferior frontal gyrus activation during emotional processing, whereas within patients the number of met-alleles was not correlated with PFC activation. During WM a negative correlation between the number of met-alleles and middle frontal gyrus activation was present in the total sample. In addition, during emotional processing there was an effect of genotype in a cluster including the amygdala and hippocampus. These results demonstrate that COMT genotype is associated with relevant endophenotypes for MDD. In addition, presence of MDD only interacts with genotype during emotional processing and not working memory.

  2. Working memory load attenuates emotional enhancement in recognition memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Aurelia Miendlarzewska

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Emotionally arousing stimuli are perceived and remembered better than neutral stimuli. Under threat, this negativity bias is further increased. We investigated whether working memory load can attenuate incidental memory for emotional images. Two groups of participants performed the N-back task with two working memory load levels. In one group, we induced anxiety using a threat-of-shock paradigm to increase attentional processing of negative information. During task performance we incidentally and briefly flashed emotional distracter images which prolonged response times in both load conditions. A subsequent unannounced immediate recognition memory test revealed that when load at exposure had been low, recognition was better for negative items in both participant groups. This enhancement, however, was attenuated under high load, leaving performance on neutral items unchanged regardless of the threat-of-shock manipulation. We conclude that both in threat and in normal states working memory load at exposure can attenuate immediate emotional memory enhancement.

  3. Working memory and the memory distortion component of hindsight bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvillo, Dustin P

    2012-01-01

    One component of hindsight bias is memory distortion: Individuals' recollections of their predictions are biased towards known outcomes. The present study examined the role of working memory in the memory distortion component of hindsight bias. Participants answered almanac-like questions, completed a measure of working memory capacity, were provided with the correct answers, and attempted to recollect their original judgements in two conditions: with and without a concurrent working memory load. Participants' recalled judgements were more biased by feedback when they recalled these judgements with a concurrent memory load and working memory capacity was negatively correlated with memory distortion. These findings are consistent with reconstruction accounts of the memory distortion component of hindsight bias and, more generally, with dual process theories of cognition. These results also relate the memory distortion component of hindsight bias with other cognitive errors, such as source monitoring errors, the belief bias in syllogistic reasoning and anchoring effects. Implications for the separate components view of hindsight bias are discussed.

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

    OpenAIRE

    Roome, Hannah

    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...

  5. 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

  6. Successful Working Memory Processes and Cerebellum in an Elderly Sample: A Neuropsychological and fMRI Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luis, Elkin O; Arrondo, Gonzalo; Vidorreta, Marta; Martínez, Martin; Loayza, Francis; Fernández-Seara, María A; Pastor, María A

    2015-01-01

    Imaging studies help to understand the evolution of key cognitive processes related to aging, such as working memory (WM). This study aimed to test three hypotheses in older adults. First, that the brain activation pattern associated to WM processes in elderly during successful low load tasks is located in posterior sensory and associative areas; second, that the prefrontal and parietal cortex and basal ganglia should be more active during high-demand tasks; third, that cerebellar activations are related to high-demand cognitive tasks and have a specific lateralization depending on the condition. We used a neuropsychological assessment with functional magnetic resonance imaging and a core N-back paradigm design that was maintained across the combination of four conditions of stimuli and two memory loads in a sample of twenty elderly subjects. During low-loads, activations were located in the visual ventral network. In high loads, there was an involvement of the basal ganglia and cerebellum in addition to the frontal and parietal cortices. Moreover, we detected an executive control role of the cerebellum in a relatively symmetric fronto-parietal network. Nevertheless, this network showed a predominantly left lateralization in parietal regions associated presumably with an overuse of verbal storage strategies. The differential activations between conditions were stimuli-dependent and were located in sensory areas. Successful WM processes in the elderly population are accompanied by an activation pattern that involves cerebellar regions working together with a fronto-parietal network.

  7. Variation in Dopamine D2 and Serotonin 5-HT2A Receptor Genes is Associated with Working Memory Processing and Response to Treatment with Antipsychotics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Blasi, Giuseppe; Selvaggi, Pierluigi; Fazio, Leonardo; Antonucci, Linda Antonella; Taurisano, Paolo; Masellis, Rita; Romano, Raffaella; Mancini, Marina; Zhang, Fengyu; Caforio, Grazia; Popolizio, Teresa; Apud, Jose; Weinberger, Daniel R; Bertolino, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    .... In particular, the DRD2 rs1076560 T allele predicts a lower ratio of expression of D2 short/long isoforms, suboptimal working memory processing, and better response to antipsychotic treatment compared with the G allele...

  8. The role of nonverbal working memory in morphosyntactic processing by children with specific language impairment and autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis Weismer, Susan; Davidson, Meghan M; Gangopadhyay, Ishanti; Sindberg, Heidi; Roebuck, Hettie; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2017-01-01

    Both children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and children with specific language impairment (SLI) have been shown to have difficulties with grammatical processing. A comparison of these two populations with neurodevelopmental disorders was undertaken to examine similarities and differences in the mechanisms that may underlie grammatical processing. Research has shown that working memory (WM) is recruited during grammatical processing. The goal of this study was to examine morphosyntactic processing on a grammatical judgment task in children who varied in clinical diagnosis and language abilities and to assess the extent to which performance is predicted by nonverbal working memory (WM). Two theoretical perspectives were evaluated relative to performance on the grammatical judgment task-the "working memory" account and the "wrap-up" account. These accounts make contrasting predictions about the detection of grammatical errors occurring early versus late in the sentence. Participants were 84 school-age children with SLI (n = 21), ASD (n = 27), and typical development (TD, n = 36). Performance was analyzed based on diagnostic group as well as language status (normal language, NL, n = 54, and language impairment, LI, n = 30). A grammatical judgment task was used in which the position of the error in the sentence (early versus late) was manipulated. A visual WM task (N-back) was administered and the ability of WM to predict morphosyntactic processing was assessed. Groups differed significantly in their sensitivity to grammatical errors (TD > SLI and NL > LI) but did not differ in nonverbal WM. Overall, children in all groups were more sensitive and quicker at detecting errors occurring late in the sentence than early in the sentence. Nonverbal WM predicted morphosyntactic processing across groups, but the specific profile of association between WM and early versus late error detection was reversed for children with and without language

  9. EEG changes caused by spontaneous facial self-touch may represent emotion regulating processes and working memory maintenance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grunwald, Martin; Weiss, Thomas; Mueller, Stephanie; Rall, Lysann

    2014-04-04

    Spontaneous facial self-touch gestures (sFSTG) are performed manifold every day by every human being, primarily in stressful situations. These movements are not usually designed to communicate and are frequently accomplished with little or no awareness. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether sFSTG are associated with specific changes in the electrical brain activity that might indicate an involvement of regulatory emotional processes and working memory. Fourteen subjects performed a delayed memory task of complex haptic stimuli. The stimuli had to be explored and then remembered for a retention interval of 5min. The retention interval was interrupted by unpleasant sounds from The International Affective Digitized Sounds and short sound-free periods. During the experiment a video stream of behavior, 19-channel EEG, and EMG (of forearm muscles) were recorded. Comparisons of the behavioral data and spectral power of different EEG frequency bands (theta, alpha, beta, and gamma) were conducted. An increase of sFSTG during the application of unpleasant sounds was observed. A significant increase of spectral theta and beta power was observed after exploration of the stimuli as well as after sFSTG in centro-parietal electrodes. The spectral theta power extremely decreased just before sFSTG during the retention interval. Contrary to this, no significant changes were detected in any of the frequencies when the spectral power before and after instructed facial self-touch movements (b-iFSTG and a-iFSTG) were compared. The changes of spectral theta power in the intervals before and after sFSTG in centro-parietal electrodes imply that sFSTG are associated with cortical regulatory processes in the domains of working memory and emotions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Enhanced structural connectivity within a brain sub-network supporting working memory and engagement processes after cognitive training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Román, Francisco J; Iturria-Medina, Yasser; Martínez, Kenia; Karama, Sherif; Burgaleta, Miguel; Evans, Alan C; Jaeggi, Susanne M; Colom, Roberto

    2017-05-01

    The structural connectome provides relevant information about experience and training-related changes in the brain. Here, we used network-based statistics (NBS) and graph theoretical analyses to study structural changes in the brain as a function of cognitive training. Fifty-six young women were divided in two groups (experimental and control). We assessed their cognitive function before and after completing a working memory intervention using a comprehensive battery that included fluid and crystallized abilities, working memory and attention control, and we also obtained structural MRI images. We acquired and analyzed diffusion-weighted images to reconstruct the anatomical connectome and we computed standardized changes in connectivity as well as group differences across time using NBS. We also compared group differences relying on a variety of graph-theory indices (clustering, characteristic path length, global and local efficiency and strength) for the whole network as well as for the sub-network derived from NBS analyses. Finally, we calculated correlations between these graph indices and training performance as well as the behavioral changes in cognitive function. Our results revealed enhanced connectivity for the training group within one specific network comprised of nodes/regions supporting cognitive processes required by the training (working memory, interference resolution, inhibition, and task engagement). Significant group differences were also observed for strength and global efficiency indices in the sub-network detected by NBS. Therefore, the connectome approach is a valuable method for tracking the effects of cognitive training interventions across specific sub-networks. Moreover, this approach allowsfor the computation of graph theoretical network metricstoquantifythetopological architecture of the brain networkdetected. The observed structural brain changes support the behavioral results reported earlier (see Colom, Román, et al., 2013

  11. 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…

  12. Which Working Memory Functions Predict Intelligence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klaus; Sub, Heinz-Martin; Wilhelm, Oliver; Wittmann, Werner W.

    2008-01-01

    Investigates the relationship between three factors of working memory (storage and processing, relational integration, and supervision) and four factors of intelligence (reasoning, speed, memory, and creativity) using structural equation models. Relational integration predicted reasoning ability at least as well as the storage-and-processing…

  13. The content of visual working memory alters processing of visual input prior to conscious access: Evidence from pupillometry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gayet, S.; Paffen, C.L.E.; Guggenmos, M.; Sterzer, P.; Stigchel, S. van der

    2017-01-01

    Visual working memory (VWM) allows for keeping relevant visual information available after termination of its sensory input. Storing information in VWM, however, affects concurrent conscious perception of visual input: initially suppressed visual input gains prioritized access to consciousness when

  14. [Working memory: neuropsychological and neurobiological issues].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borkowska, Alina; Wiłkość, Monika; Tomaszewska, Marta; Rybakowski, Janusz

    2006-01-01

    Working memory denotes an ability to remember information for a short-time and to manipulate it. The memory allows including correct information depending on the situation, to keep the information on present activities for a while and enables changing the reaction according to new criteria. The relation between working memory and efficiency of complex cognitive processes and also with the control of emotional processes, plasticity of behaviour and consciousness was demonstrated. Working memory is connected with the activity of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex of the brain. Recently, it has been shown, that working memory disturbances play an important role in the aetiopathogenesis of psychiatric disturbances such as schizophrenia, bipolar affective disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Working memory disturbances are also shown in a proportion of healthy first-degree relatives of patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorders. Working memory disturbances are presently regarded as a cognitive endophenotypic marker of vulnerability to these illnesses. In recent years, an association between working memory abilities and activity of different neurotransmitters, especially with the dopaminergic system in the brain, has been shown. Molecular genetic studies show an association between working memory abilities and polymorphism of the dopaminergic system genes in schizophrenia and polymorphism of BDNF gene in bipolar affective disorders. So far not much data about the genetics of working memory in healthy subjects has been gathered. Currently in Poland such research is carried on in the Clinical Neuropsychology Unit Nicolaus Copernicus University, Collegium Medicum in Bydgoszcz in cooperation with the Department of Adult Psychiatry and Laboratory of Psychiatric Genetics University of Medical Sciences in Poznań.

  15. Models of memory: information processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eysenck, M W

    1988-01-01

    A complete understanding of human memory will necessarily involve consideration of the active processes involved at the time of learning and of the organization and nature of representation of information in long-term memory. In addition to process and structure, it is important for theory to indicate the ways in which stimulus-driven and conceptually driven processes interact with each other in the learning situation. Not surprisingly, no existent theory provides a detailed specification of all of these factors. However, there are a number of more specific theories which are successful in illuminating some of the component structures and processes. The working memory model proposed by Baddeley and Hitch (1974) and modified subsequently has shown how the earlier theoretical construct of the short-term store should be replaced with the notion of working memory. In essence, working memory is a system which is used both to process information and to permit the transient storage of information. It comprises a number of conceptually distinct, but functionally interdependent components. So far as long-term memory is concerned, there is evidence of a number of different kinds of representation. Of particular importance is the distinction between declarative knowledge and procedural knowledge, a distinction which has received support from the study of amnesic patients. Kosslyn has argued for a distinction between literal representation and propositional representation, whereas Tulving has distinguished between episodic and semantic memories. While Tulving's distinction is perhaps the best known, there is increasing evidence that episodic and semantic memory differ primarily in content rather than in process, and so the distinction may be of less theoretical value than was originally believed.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  16. Classifying individuals at high-risk for psychosis based on functional brain activity during working memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendfeldt, Kerstin; Smieskova, Renata; Koutsouleris, Nikolaos; Klöppel, Stefan; Schmidt, André; Walter, Anna; Harrisberger, Fabienne; Wrege, Johannes; Simon, Andor; Taschler, Bernd; Nichols, Thomas; Riecher-Rössler, Anita; Lang, Undine E; Radue, Ernst-Wilhelm; Borgwardt, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    The psychosis high-risk state is accompanied by alterations in functional brain activity during working memory processing. We used binary automatic pattern-classification to discriminate between the at-risk mental state (ARMS), first episode psychosis (FEP) and healthy controls (HCs) based on n-back WM-induced brain activity. Linear support vector machines and leave-one-out-cross-validation were applied to fMRI data of matched ARMS, FEP and HC (19 subjects/group). The HC and ARMS were correctly classified, with an accuracy of 76.2% (sensitivity 89.5%, specificity 63.2%, p = 0.01) using a verbal working memory network mask. Only 50% and 47.4% of individuals were classified correctly for HC vs. FEP (p = 0.46) or ARMS vs. FEP (p = 0.62), respectively. Without mask, accuracy was 65.8% for HC vs. ARMS (p = 0.03) and 65.8% for HC vs. FEP (p = 0.0047), and 57.9% for ARMS vs. FEP (p = 0.18). Regions in the medial frontal, paracingulate, cingulate, inferior frontal and superior frontal gyri, inferior and superior parietal lobules, and precuneus were particularly important for group separation. These results suggest that FEP and HC or FEP and ARMS cannot be accurately separated in small samples under these conditions. However, ARMS can be identified with very high sensitivity in comparison to HC. This might aid classification and help to predict transition in the ARMS.

  17. 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.

  18. The effects of processing time and processing rate on forgetting in working memory: testing four models of the complex span paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudjetz, Annekatrin; Oberauer, Klaus

    2007-10-01

    Four models of working memory processes in the complex span paradigm were tested: The task-switching model of Towse, Hitch, and Hutton (1998), the interference account of Saito and Miyake (2004), and two versions of the time-based resource-sharing model of Barrouillet, Bernardin, and Camos (2004). On the basis of a reading span paradigm that used segmented sentences, the effect of processing time on the recall of words was investigated while the amount of processing was held constant. Two conditions of reading (continuous vs. normal) were compared in order to study the influence of brief pauses during reading that could be used for articulatory rehearsal. The results favor a version of the time-based resource-sharing model: A faster reading rate had a negative effect on recall. The effect of reading rate was obtained with continuous as well as normal reading, revealing that even continuous articulation does not prevent simultaneous refreshing of memory traces. A second experiment showed that continuous reading made concurrent articulatory rehearsal virtually impossible. These findings imply that a second rehearsal mechanism for verbal working memory, other than articulatory rehearsal, exists.

  19. Working memory, situation models, and synesthesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radvansky, Gabriel A; Gibson, Bradley S; McNerney, M Windy

    2014-01-01

    Research on language comprehension suggests a strong relationship between working memory span measures and language comprehension. However, there is also evidence that this relationship weakens at higher levels of comprehension, such as the situation model level. The current study explored this relationship by comparing 10 grapheme-color synesthetes who have additional color experiences when they read words that begin with different letters and 48 normal controls on a number of tests of complex working memory capacity and processing at the situation model level. On all tests of working memory capacity, the synesthetes outperformed the controls. Importantly, there was no carryover benefit for the synesthetes for processing at the situation model level. This reinforces the idea that although some aspects of language comprehension are related to working memory span scores, this applies less directly to situation model levels. This suggests that theories of working memory must take into account this limitation, and the working memory processes that are involved in situation model construction and processing must be derived.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Reducing State Anxiety Using Working Memory Maintenance

    OpenAIRE

    Balderston, Nicholas L.; Hsiung, Abigail; Liu, Jeffrey; Ernst, Monique; Grillon, Christian

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this protocol is to explain how to examine the relationship between working memory processes and anxiety by combining the Sternberg Working Memory (WM) and the threat of shock paradigms. In the Sternberg WM paradigm, subjects are required to maintain a series of letters in the WM for a brief interval and respond by identifying whether the position of a given letter in the series matches a numerical prompt. In the threat of shock paradigm, subjects are exposed to alternating blo...

  3. Carotid β-stiffness index is associated with slower processing speed but not working memory or white matter integrity in healthy middle-aged/older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DuBose, Lyndsey E; Voss, Michelle W; Weng, Timothy B; Kent, James D; Dubishar, Kaitlyn M; Lane-Cordova, Abbi; Sigurdsson, Gardar; Schmid, Phillip; Barlow, Patrick B; Pierce, Gary L

    2017-04-01

    Aging is associated with increased carotid artery stiffness, a predictor of incident stroke, and reduced cognitive performance and brain white matter integrity (WMI) in humans. Therefore, we hypothesized that higher carotid stiffness/lower compliance would be independently associated with slower processing speed, higher working memory cost, and lower WMI in healthy middle-aged/older (MA/O) adults. Carotid β-stiffness (P adults. MA/O adults demonstrated slower processing speed (27.4 ± 4.6 vs. 35.4 ± 5.0 U/60 s, P working memory cost (-15.4 ± 0.14 vs. -2.2 ± 0.05%, P adults. Global WMI was lower in MA/O adults (P working memory cost or WMI. Among MA/O adults, higher β-stiffness (B = -0.60 ± 0.18, P = 0.002) and lower compliance (B = 0.93 ± 0.26, P = 0.002) were associated with slower processing speed but not working memory cost or WMI. These data suggest that greater carotid artery stiffness is independently and selectively associated with slower processing speed but not working memory among MA/O adults. Carotid artery stiffening may modulate reductions in processing speed earlier than working memory with healthy aging in humans.NEW & NOTEWORTHY Previously, studies investigating the relation between large elastic artery stiffness, cognition, and brain structure have focused mainly on aortic stiffness in aged individuals with cardiovascular disease risk factors and other comorbidities. This study adds to the field by demonstrating that the age-related increases in carotid artery stiffness, but not aortic stiffness, is independently and selectively associated with slower processing speed but not working memory among middle-aged/older adults with low cardiovascular disease risk factor burden. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  4. Effects of acute hypoglycemia on working memory and language processing in adults with and without type 1 diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Kate V; Pickering, Martin J; Zammitt, Nicola N; Hartsuiker, Robert J; Traxler, Matthew J; Frier, Brian M; Deary, Ian J

    2015-06-01

    To examine the effects of hypoglycemia on language processing in adults with and without type 1 diabetes. Forty adults were studied (20 with type 1 diabetes and 20 healthy volunteers) using a hyperinsulinemic glucose clamp to lower blood glucose to 2.5 mmol/L (45 mg/dL) (hypoglycemia) for 60 min, or to maintain blood glucose at 4.5 mmol/L (81 mg/dL) (euglycemia), on separate occasions. Language tests were applied to assess the effects of hypoglycemia on the relationship between working memory and language (reading span), grammatical decoding (self-paced reading), and grammatical encoding (subject-verb agreement). Hypoglycemia caused a significant deterioration in reading span (P type 1 diabetes (P = 0.03; η(2) = 0.12; Cohen d = 0.25). However, hypoglycemia did not significantly affect the number of errors in sentence comprehension or the time taken to answer questions. Hypoglycemia caused a deterioration of subject-verb agreement (correct responses: P = 0.011; η(2) = 0.159; Cohen d = 0.31). Hypoglycemia caused a significant deterioration in reading span and in the accuracy of subject-verb agreement, both of which are practical aspects of language involved in its everyday use. Language processing is therefore impaired during moderate hypoglycemia. © 2015 by the American Diabetes Association. Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered.

  5. Encoding into Visual Working Memory: Event-Related Brain Potentials Reflect Automatic Processing of Seemingly Redundant Information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Berti

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Encoding and maintenance of information in visual working memory in an S1-S2 task with a 1500 ms retention phase were investigated by means of event-related brain potentials (ERPs. Participants were asked to decide whether two visual stimuli were physically identical (identity comparison (IC task or belonged to the same set or category of equivalent patterns (category comparison (CC task. The stimuli differ with regard to two features. (1 Each pattern can belong to a set of either four (ESS 4 or eight (ESS 8 equivalent patterns, mirroring differences in the complexity with regard to the representational structure of each pattern (i.e., equivalence set size (ESS. (2 The set of patterns differ with regard to the rated complexity. Memory performance obtained the effects of the task instructions (IC versus CC and the ESS (ESS 4 versus ESS 8 but not of the rated complexity. ERPs in the retention interval reveal that the stimulus-related factors (subjective complexity and ESS affect the encoding of the stimuli as mirrored by the pronounced P3b amplitude in ESS 8 compared to ESS 4 patterns. Importantly, these effects are independent of task instructions. The pattern of results suggests an automatic processing of the ESS in the encoding phase.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. The Relevance of the Functional 5-HT1A Receptor Polymorphism for Attention and Working Memory Processes during Mental Rotation of Characters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beste, Christian; Heil, Martin; Domschke, Katharina; Konrad, Carsten

    2010-01-01

    Numerous lines of research indicate that attentional processes, working memory and saccadic processes are highly interrelated. In the current study, we examine the relation between these processes with respect to their cognitive-neurophysiological and neurobiological background by means of event-related potentials (ERPs) in a sample of N = 72…

  9. Effects of 12-Week Bacopa monnieri Consumption on Attention, Cognitive Processing, Working Memory, and Functions of Both Cholinergic and Monoaminergic Systems in Healthy Elderly Volunteers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatimah Peth-Nui

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available At present, the scientific evidence concerning the effect of Bacopa monnieri on brain activity together with working memory is less available. Therefore, we aimed to determine the effect of B. monnieri on attention, cognitive processing, working memory, and cholinergic and monoaminergic functions in healthy elderly. A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled design was utilized. Sixty healthy elderly subjects (mean age 62.62 years; SD 6.46, consisting of 23 males and 37 females, received either a standardized extract of B. monnieri (300 and 600 mg or placebo once daily for 12 weeks. The cholinergic and monoaminergic systems functions were determined using AChE and MAO activities. Working memory was assessed using percent accuracy and reaction time of various memory tests as indices, whereas attention and cognitive processing were assessed using latencies and amplitude of N100 and P300 components of event-related potential. All assessments were performed before treatment, every four weeks throughout study period, and at four weeks after the cessation of intervention. B. monnieri-treated group showed improved working memory together with a decrease in both N100 and P300 latencies. The suppression of plasma AChE activity was also observed. These results suggest that B. monnieri can improve attention, cognitive processing, and working memory partly via the suppression of AChE activity.

  10. 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

  11. Working memory load attenuates emotional enhancement in recognition memory

    OpenAIRE

    Miendlarzewska, Ewa A.; van Elswijk, Gijs; Cannistraci, Carlo V.; van Ee, Raymond

    2013-01-01

    Emotionally arousing stimuli are perceived and remembered better than neutral stimuli. Under threat, this negativity bias is further increased. We investigated whether working memory (WM) load can attenuate incidental memory for emotional images. Two groups of participants performed the N-back task with two WM load levels. In one group, we induced anxiety using a threat of shock paradigm to increase attentional processing of negative information. During task performance we incidentally and br...

  12. The effects of working memory resource availability on prospective memory: a formal modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Rebekah E; Bayen, Ute J

    2005-01-01

    The PAM theory of event-based prospective memory (Smith, 2003; Smith & Bayen, 2004a) proposes that successful prospective memory performance demands upon the interaction of preparatory attentional processes and retrospective memory processes. The two experiments in the current study represent the first application of a formal model to investigate the sensitivity of these underlying processes to variations in working memory resource availability. Multinomial modeling of data from prospective-memory tasks showed that working memory span influenced preparatory attentional processes and retrospective-memory processes.

  13. Stress effects on working memory, explicit memory, and implicit memory for neutral and emotional stimuli in healthy men

    OpenAIRE

    Lüthi, Mathias; Meier, Beat; Sandi, Carmen

    2008-01-01

    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...

  14. 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.

  15. 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

    2017-12-11

    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.

  16. Relationships among Linguistic Processing Speed, Phonological Working Memory, and Attention in Children Who Stutter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Julie D.; Wagovich, Stacy A.

    2010-01-01

    Relatively recently, experimental studies of linguistic processing speed in children who stutter (CWS) have emerged, some of which suggest differences in performance among CWS compared to children who do not stutter (CWNS). What is not yet well understood is the extent to which underlying cognitive skills may impact performance on timed tasks of…

  17. Auditory Temporal Processing and Working Memory: Two Independent Deficits for Dyslexia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fostick, Leah; Bar-El, Sharona; Ram-Tsur, Ronit

    2012-01-01

    Dyslexia is a neuro-cognitive disorder with a strong genetic basis, characterized by a difficulty in acquiring reading skills. Several hypotheses have been suggested in an attempt to explain the origin of dyslexia, among which some have suggested that dyslexic readers might have a deficit in auditory temporal processing, while others hypothesized…

  18. Auditory Working Memory Load Impairs Visual Ventral Stream Processing: Toward a Unified Model of Attentional Load

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klemen, Jane; Buchel, Christian; Buhler, Mira; Menz, Mareike M.; Rose, Michael

    2010-01-01

    Attentional interference between tasks performed in parallel is known to have strong and often undesired effects. As yet, however, the mechanisms by which interference operates remain elusive. A better knowledge of these processes may facilitate our understanding of the effects of attention on human performance and the debilitating consequences…

  19. Chunking Improves Symbolic Sequence Processing and Relies on Working Memory Gating Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solopchuk, Oleg; Alamia, Andrea; Olivier, Etienne; Zénon, Alexandre

    2016-01-01

    Chunking, namely the grouping of sequence elements in clusters, is ubiquitous during sequence processing, but its impact on performance remains debated. Here, we found that participants who adopted a consistent chunking strategy during symbolic sequence learning showed a greater improvement of their performance and a larger decrease in cognitive…

  20. Impulsive personality predicts dopamine-dependent changes in frontostriatal activity during component processes of working memory.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cools, R.; Sheridan, M.; Jacobs, E.; D'Esposito, M.

    2007-01-01

    Dopaminergic drugs affect a variety of cognitive processes, but the direction and extent of effects vary across individuals and tasks. Paradoxical effects are observed, by which the same drug causes cognitive enhancing as well as adverse effects. Here, we demonstrate that individual differences in

  1. Specific and Nonspecific Neural Activity during Selective Processing of Visual Representations in Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Hwamee; Leung, Hoi-Chung

    2010-01-01

    In this fMRI study, we investigated prefrontal cortex (PFC) and visual association regions during selective information processing. We recorded behavioral responses and neural activity during a delayed recognition task with a cue presented during the delay period. A specific cue ("Face" or "Scene") was used to indicate which one of the two…

  2. Investigating IELTS Academic Writing Task 2 : Relationships between cognitive writing processes, text quality, and working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Révész, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Lee, MinJin

    2017-01-01

    This project examined the cognitive processes and online behaviours of second language writers while performing IELTS Academic Writing Test Task 2, and the ways in which the online behaviours of test-takers relate to the quality of the text produced. An additional aim was to assess whether writing

  3. The Relationships of Working Memory, Secondary Memory, and General Fluid Intelligence: Working Memory Is Special

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelton, Jill Talley; Elliott, Emily M.; Matthews, Russell A.; Hill, B. D.; Gouvier, Wm. Drew

    2010-01-01

    Recent efforts have been made to elucidate the commonly observed link between working memory and reasoning ability. The results have been inconsistent, with some work suggesting that the emphasis placed on retrieval from secondary memory by working memory tests is the driving force behind this association (Mogle, Lovett, Stawski, & Sliwinski,…

  4. On the (unimportance of working memory in speech-in-noise processing for listeners with normal hearing thresholds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Füllgrabe

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available With the advent of cognitive hearing science, increased attention has been given to individual differences in cognitive functioning and their explanatory power in accounting for inter-listener variability in the processing of speech in noise (SiN. The psychological construct that has received much interest in recent years is working memory (WM. Empirical evidence indeed confirms the association between WM capacity (WMC and SiN identification in older hearing-impaired listeners. However, some theoretical models propose that variations in WMC are an important predictor for variations in speech processing abilities in adverse perceptual conditions for all listeners, and this notion has become widely accepted within the field. To assess whether WMC also plays a role when listeners without hearing loss process speech in adverse listening conditions, we surveyed published and unpublished studies in which the Reading-Span test (a widely used measure of WMC was administered in conjunction with a measure of SiN identification, using sentence material routinely used in audiological and hearing research. A meta-analysis revealed that, for young listeners with audiometrically normal hearing, individual variations in WMC are estimated to account for, on average, less than 2% of the variance in SiN identification scores. This result cautions against the (intuitively appealing assumption that individual variations in WMC are predictive of SiN identification independently of the age and hearing status of the listener.

  5. Cognition-emotion interactions in schizophrenia: emerging evidence on working memory load and implicit facial-affective processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mano, Quintino R; Brown, Gregory G

    2013-01-01

    Although much is known about working memory (WM) and emotion perception deficits in schizophrenia, little is known of how these deficits interact. We sought to address this gap by conducting a narrative review of relevant literatures and distilling core themes. First, people with schizophrenia have difficulty with high load and during initial phases of WM (e.g., encoding, early rehearsal), yet are able to activate WM-related prefrontal brain regions to the same maximal degree as comparison controls under certain circumstances. Second, people with schizophrenia have difficulty identifying and expressing facial emotions, yet demonstrate heightened automatic/implicit processing of facial emotions. Third, people with schizophrenia behaviourally demonstrate intact cognition-emotion interactions on laboratory tasks wherein emotional processing is automatic/implicit, yet demonstrate cognition-emotion disconnections in other levels of analysis. Insights are drawn from basic science showing interdependency between WM load and implicit emotion. Future research questions are raised regarding interactions between WM load and implicit facial-affective processing in schizophrenia.

  6. On The (Un)importance of Working Memory in Speech-in-Noise Processing for Listeners with Normal Hearing Thresholds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Füllgrabe, Christian; Rosen, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    With the advent of cognitive hearing science, increased attention has been given to individual differences in cognitive functioning and their explanatory power in accounting for inter-listener variability in the processing of speech in noise (SiN). The psychological construct that has received much interest in recent years is working memory. Empirical evidence indeed confirms the association between WM capacity (WMC) and SiN identification in older hearing-impaired listeners. However, some theoretical models propose that variations in WMC are an important predictor for variations in speech processing abilities in adverse perceptual conditions for all listeners, and this notion has become widely accepted within the field. To assess whether WMC also plays a role when listeners without hearing loss process speech in adverse listening conditions, we surveyed published and unpublished studies in which the Reading-Span test (a widely used measure of WMC) was administered in conjunction with a measure of SiN identification, using sentence material routinely used in audiological and hearing research. A meta-analysis revealed that, for young listeners with audiometrically normal hearing, individual variations in WMC are estimated to account for, on average, less than 2% of the variance in SiN identification scores. This result cautions against the (intuitively appealing) assumption that individual variations in WMC are predictive of SiN identification independently of the age and hearing status of the listener.

  7. Working memory deficits of reading disabled children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jong, P F

    1998-08-01

    Aims of the study were to investigate the specificity of reading disabled childrens deficits in working memory capacity and to pursue whether their deficits could be accounted for by deficient processing or impairments in verbal short-term storage capacity. A group of 10-year-old reading disabled children was compared with two groups of normal reading children, matched for chronological age and reading age, respectively. Measures for working memory capacity, short-term capacity and processing speed related to the language and to the numerical domain were administered. Results indicated that reading disabled children performed worse on all measures of working memory capacity, irrespective of the domain which these measures reflected. Their poorer performance could neither be explained by inefficient processing nor to their deficits in verbal short-term storage capacity. Reading disabled children seem to have a general lack of capacity for the concurrent processing and storage of verbal information. Copyright 1998 Academic Press.

  8. Meta-analysis of the research impact of Baddeley’s multicomponent working memory model and Cowan’s embedded-processes model of working memory: A bibliometric mapping approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gruszka Aleksandra

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available In this study bibliometric mapping method was employed to visualise the current research trends and the impact of the two most influential models of working memory, namely: A. D. Baddeley and G. J. Hitch’s (1974 multicomponent working memory model and N. Cowan’s (1988 embedded-processes model of working memory. Using VOSviewer software two maps were generated based on the index-term words extracted from the research papers citing Baddeley (2000 and Cowan (2001, respectively. The maps represent networks of co-occurrences of index terms and can be interpreted as an indication of the main research fields related to the examined models of WM. The results of the analysis revealed that the spheres of influence of the two main conceptualisations of WM are rather different than similar. Although the first two clusters, i.e. “brain mapping” and “higher-level cognition and development” are present in both maps, their relative importance varies. The remaining clusters are unique to each map. Baddeley’s theory seems to have a greater influence on “neuropsychology”, while Cowan’s theory - on basic research on “biological systems”, including the nervous system in humans and animals. The second difference between these theories concerns their relations to functions and dysfunctions associated with particular sensory modalities: in Baddelay’s theory with the “auditory modality” cluster, and in Cowan’s - with the “visual modality” one.

  9. Working Memory Effects on L1 and L2 Processing of Ambiguous Relative Clauses by Korean L2 Learners of English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ji Hyon; Christianson, Kiel

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we report the results of two self-paced reading experiments that investigated working memory capacity effects on the processing of globally ambiguous relative clauses by advanced Korean second language (L2) learners of English. Consistent with previous monolingual literature on the processing of temporary ambiguity, we found that…

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Literacy: Exploring working memory systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Catarina; Faísca, Luís; Ingvar, Martin; Petersson, Karl Magnus; Reis, Alexandra

    2012-01-01

    Previous research showed an important association between reading and writing skills (literacy) and the phonological loop. However, the effects of literacy on other working memory components remain unclear. In this study, we investigated performance of illiterate subjects and their matched literate controls on verbal and nonverbal working memory tasks. Results revealed that the phonological loop is significantly influenced by literacy, while the visuospatial sketchpad appears to be less affected or not at all. Results also suggest that the central executive might be influenced by literacy, possibly as an expression of cognitive reserve.

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. The effects of long-term stress on neural dynamics of working memory processing: An investigation using ERP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Yiran; Leung, Ada W S; Duan, Hongxia; Zhang, Liang; Zhang, Kan; Wu, Jianhui; Qin, Shaozheng

    2016-03-22

    This study examined the neural dynamics of working memory (WM) processing under long-term stress. Forty participants who had been exposed to a long period of major exam preparation (six months) and twenty-one control participants performed a numerical n-back task (n = 1, 2) while electroencephalograms were recorded. Psychological and endocrinal measurements confirmed significantly higher levels of long-term stress for participants in the exam group. The exam group showed significantly increased P2 amplitude in the frontal-central sites in the 1-back and 2-back conditions, whereas other ERP components, including the P1, N1 and P3 and behavioral performance, were unchanged. Notably, the P2 effect was most pronounced in participants in the exam group who reported perceiving high levels of stress. The perceived stress scores positively correlated with the P2 amplitude in the 1-back and 2-back conditions. These results suggest that long-term stress has an impact on attention and the initiation of the updating process in WM.

  16. Distributed Cortical Phase Synchronization in the EEG Reveals Parallel Attention and Working Memory Processes Involved in the Attentional Blink.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glennon, Mark; Keane, Michael A; Elliott, Mark A; Sauseng, Paul

    2016-05-01

    Attentional blink (AB) describes a visuo-perceptual phenomenon in which the second of 2 targets within a rapid serial visual presentation stream is not detected. There are several cognitive models attempting to explain the fundamentals of this information processing bottleneck. Here, we used electroencephalographic recordings and the analysis of interregional phase synchronization of rhythmical brain activity to investigate the neural bases of the AB. By investigating the time course of interregional phase synchronization separately for trials in which participants failed to report the second target correctly (AB trials) and trials in which no AB occurred, and by clustering interregional connections based on their functional similarity, it was possible to define several distinct cortical networks. Analyzing these networks comprising phase synchronization--over a large spectrum of brain frequencies from theta to gamma activity--it was possible to identify neural correlates for cognitive subfunctions involved in the AB, such as the encoding of targets into working memory, tuning of attentional filters, and the recruitment of general cognitive resources. This parallel activation of functionally distinct neural processes substantiates the eligibility of several cognitive models on the AB. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. 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…

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Working memory deficits in boys with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): An examination of orthographic coding and episodic buffer processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alderson, R Matt; Kasper, Lisa J; Patros, Connor H G; Hudec, Kristen L; Tarle, Stephanie J; Lea, Sarah E

    2015-01-01

    The episodic buffer component of working memory was examined in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and typically developing peers (TD). Thirty-two children (ADHD = 16, TD = 16) completed three versions of a phonological working memory task that varied with regard to stimulus presentation modality (auditory, visual, or dual auditory and visual), as well as a visuospatial task. Children with ADHD experienced the largest magnitude working memory deficits when phonological stimuli were presented via a unimodal, auditory format. Their performance improved during visual and dual modality conditions but remained significantly below the performance of children in the TD group. In contrast, the TD group did not exhibit performance differences between the auditory- and visual-phonological conditions but recalled significantly more stimuli during the dual-phonological condition. Furthermore, relative to TD children, children with ADHD recalled disproportionately fewer phonological stimuli as set sizes increased, regardless of presentation modality. Finally, an examination of working memory components indicated that the largest magnitude between-group difference was associated with the central executive. Collectively, these findings suggest that ADHD-related working memory deficits reflect a combination of impaired central executive and phonological storage/rehearsal processes, as well as an impaired ability to benefit from bound multimodal information processed by the episodic buffer.

  3. 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.

  4. Working and strategic memory deficits in schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stone, M.; Gabrieli, J. D.; Stebbins, G. T.; Sullivan, E. V.

    1998-01-01

    Working memory and its contribution to performance on strategic memory tests in schizophrenia were studied. Patients (n = 18) and control participants (n = 15), all men, received tests of immediate memory (forward digit span), working memory (listening, computation, and backward digit span), and long-term strategic (free recall, temporal order, and self-ordered pointing) and nonstrategic (recognition) memory. Schizophrenia patients performed worse on all tests. Education, verbal intelligence, and immediate memory capacity did not account for deficits in working memory in schizophrenia patients. Reduced working memory capacity accounted for group differences in strategic memory but not in recognition memory. Working memory impairment may be central to the profile of impaired cognitive performance in schizophrenia and is consistent with hypothesized frontal lobe dysfunction associated with this disease. Additional medial-temporal dysfunction may account for the recognition memory deficit.

  5. 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.

  6. Does learning to read shape verbal working memory?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Demoulin, Catherine; Kolinsky, Régine

    2016-01-01

    ... differences in working memory can predict reading achievement. In contrast, very little attention has been dedicated to the converse possibility that learning to read shapes the development of verbal memory processes...

  7. 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.

  8. ADHD Subtypes and Co-Occurring Anxiety, Depression, and Oppositional-Defiant Disorder: Differences in Gordon Diagnostic System and Wechsler Working Memory and Processing Speed Index Scores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayes, Susan Dickerson; Calhoun, Susan L.; Chase, Gary A.; Mink, Danielle M.; Stagg, Ryan E.

    2009-01-01

    Objective: Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children Freedom-from-Distractibility/Working Memory Index (FDI/WMI), Processing Speed Index (PSI), and Gordon Diagnostic System (GDS) scores in ADHD children were examined as a function of subtype and coexisting anxiety, depression, and oppositional-defiant disorder. Method: Participants were 587…

  9. Differences in Low and High Working-Memory Capacity Readers' Cognitive and Metacognitive Processing Patterns as a Function of Reading for Different Purposes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linderholm, Tracy; Cong, Xiaosi; Zhao, Qin

    2008-01-01

    Differences in cognitive and metacognitive processing patterns as a function of working-memory capacity and reading for different purposes were examined in college-aged readers by collecting reading times and calculating absolute monitoring accuracy, which is the difference between estimated and actual comprehension test performance. Readers read…

  10. Verbal Fluency in Male and Female Schizophrenia Patients: Different Patterns of Association With Processing Speed, Working Memory Span, and Clinical Symptoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brébion, Gildas; Stephan-Otto, Christian; Ochoa, Susana; Nieto, Lourdes; Contel, Montserrat; Usall, Judith

    2017-10-16

    Decreased processing speed in schizophrenia patients has been identified as a major impairment factor in various neuropsychological domains. Working memory span has been found to be involved in several deep or effortful cognitive processes. We investigated the impact that these 2 cognitive functions may have on phonological and semantic fluency in schizophrenia patients and healthy participants. Fifty-five patients with schizophrenia and 60 healthy participants were administered a neuropsychological battery including phonological and semantic fluency, working memory, and cognitive and motor speed. Regression analyses revealed that motor speed was related to phonological fluency in female patients, whereas cognitive speed was related to semantic fluency in male patients. In addition, working memory span was related to verbal fluency in women from both the patient and the healthy control groups. Decreased processing speed, but not decreased working memory span, accounted for the verbal fluency deficit in patients. Verbal fluency was inversely related to attention deficit in female patients and to negative symptoms in male patients. Decreased processing speed may be the main factor in verbal fluency impairment of patients. Further, the cognitive and clinical predictors of verbal fluency efficiency are different in men and women. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. 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.

  12. Processing Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy Signal with a Kalman Filter to Assess Working Memory during Simulated Flight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durantin, Gautier; Scannella, Sébastien; Gateau, Thibault; Delorme, Arnaud; Dehais, Frédéric

    2015-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is a key executive function for operating aircraft, especially when pilots have to recall series of air traffic control instructions. There is a need to implement tools to monitor WM as its limitation may jeopardize flight safety. An innovative way to address this issue is to adopt a Neuroergonomics approach that merges knowledge and methods from Human Factors, System Engineering, and Neuroscience. A challenge of great importance for Neuroergonomics is to implement efficient brain imaging techniques to measure the brain at work and to design Brain Computer Interfaces (BCI). We used functional near infrared spectroscopy as it has been already successfully tested to measure WM capacity in complex environment with air traffic controllers (ATC), pilots, or unmanned vehicle operators. However, the extraction of relevant features from the raw signal in ecological environment is still a critical issue due to the complexity of implementing real-time signal processing techniques without a priori knowledge. We proposed to implement the Kalman filtering approach, a signal processing technique that is efficient when the dynamics of the signal can be modeled. We based our approach on the Boynton model of hemodynamic response. We conducted a first experiment with nine participants involving a basic WM task to estimate the noise covariances of the Kalman filter. We then conducted a more ecological experiment in our flight simulator with 18 pilots who interacted with ATC instructions (two levels of difficulty). The data was processed with the same Kalman filter settings implemented in the first experiment. This filter was benchmarked with a classical pass-band IIR filter and a Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) filter. Statistical analysis revealed that the Kalman filter was the most efficient to separate the two levels of load, by increasing the observed effect size in prefrontal areas involved in WM. In addition, the use of a Kalman filter increased

  13. Working memory in social anxiety disorder: better manipulation of emotional versus neutral material in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, K Lira; Kutz, Amanda M; LeMoult, Joelle; Joormann, Jutta

    2017-12-01

    Individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD) engage in post-event processing, a form of perseverative thinking. Given that deficits in working memory might underlie perseverative thinking, we examined working memory in SAD with a particular focus on the effects of stimulus valence. SAD (n = 31) and healthy control (n = 20) participants either maintained (forward trials) or reversed (backward trials) in working memory the order of four emotional or four neutral pictures, and we examined sorting costs, which reflect the extent to which performance deteriorated on the backward trials compared to the forward trials. Emotionality of stimuli affected performance of the two groups differently. Whereas control participants exhibited higher sorting costs for emotional stimuli compared to neutral stimuli, SAD participants exhibited the opposite pattern. Greater attention to emotional stimuli in SAD might facilitate the processing of emotional (vs. neutral) stimuli in working memory.

  14. Working memory maintenance is sufficient to reduce state anxiety

    OpenAIRE

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

    2016-01-01

    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, 2007). However, previous research using the n-back working memory task suggests that working memory load also reduces state anxiety. A...

  15. 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.

  16. Selective Attention, Working Memory, and Animal Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matzel, Louis D.; Kolata, Stefan

    2009-01-01

    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. PMID:19607858

  17. Meta-analysis of the research impact of Baddeley’s multicomponent working memory model and Cowan’s embedded-processes model of working memory: A bibliometric mapping approach

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Aleksandra Gruszka; Jarosław Orzechowski

    2016-01-01

    In this study bibliometric mapping method was employed to visualise the current research trends and the impact of the two most influential models of working memory, namely: A. D. Baddeley and G. J. Hitch’s (1974...

  18. The role of working memory and information processing speed on wisconsin card sorting test performance in Parkinson disease without dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liozidou, Athanasia; Potagas, Constantin; Papageorgiou, Sokratis G; Zalonis, Ioannis

    2012-12-01

    Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST) performance is often compromised in Parkinson disease (PD). We aimed to investigate (a) the role of working memory (WM) and information processing speed (IPS) in the WCST performance of PD without dementia and (b) the profile of PD without dementia optimal WCST performance. 73 nondemented patients with PD were examined in WCST, WM (Digit Span Backwards [DSPANB] and Arithmetic subscale, Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale [WAIS]), and IPS (Digit Symbol subscale-WAIS and Trail Making Test, part A [TMT-A]) and compared to a group of 48 healthy participants. The group with PD was further divided into 2 subgroups on the basis of their WCST performance, number of categories achieved (CAT):0-2 and CAT:3-6, and comparisons were performed. The DSPANB correlated significantly and was the only neuropsychological variable that significantly contributed to the WCST perseverative errors (WPERRORS) performed by the PD group. Differences in the cognitive performance between CAT:3-6 and CAT:0-2 PD subgroups were no longer significant after controlling for age and general level of intelligence (full IQ [FIQ]). Age and FIQ significantly contributed to the WPERRORS performed by CAT:3-6 PD subgroup, while DSPANB was the only variable that significantly contributed to their WCST overall performance. Our findings address the relationship between WM and inflexible behavior exhibited by PD without dementia, argue for the importance of lower age, higher education, and level of intelligence for the successful performance on WCST; yet, the differences in cognitive performance regardless of the duration of illness within our patients with PD provide support to cognitive reserve concept.

  19. Lowered performance in working memory and attentional sub-processes are most prominent in multi-domain amnestic mild cognitive impairment subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klekociuk, Shannon Z; Summers, Mathew J

    2014-03-01

    Research suggests that working memory and attention deficits may be present in mild cognitive impairment (MCI). However, the functional status of these domains within revised MCI subtypes remains unclear, particularly because previous studies have examined these cognitive domains with the same tests that were used to classify MCI subtypes. The aim of this study was to examine working memory and attention function in MCI subtypes on a battery of neuropsychological tests that were distinct from those used to classify MCI subtypes A total of 122 adults aged 60-90 years were classified at baseline as amnestic MCI, non-amnestic MCI, and multi-domain amnestic (a-MCI+). The attentional and working memory capacity of participants was examined using a battery of tests distinct from those used to classify MCI at screening. The a-MCI+ group demonstrated the poorest performance on all working memory tasks and specific sub-processes of attention. The non-amnestic MCI group had lowered performance on visual span and complex sustained attention only. There was no evidence of either attentional or working memory impairment in the amnestic MCI participants. When MCI cohorts are assessed on measures distinct from those used at classification, a-MCI+ subjects had the most compromised working memory and attention function. These results support previous findings that suggest a-MCI+ more closely resembles early stage Alzheimer's disease and those with a-MCI+ may be at increased rate of future cognitive decline compared to those with other MCI subtypes. © 2014 The Authors. Psychogeriatrics © 2014 Japanese Psychogeriatric Society.

  20. Selective Attention, Working Memory, and Animal Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Matzel, Louis D.; Kolata, Stefan

    2009-01-01

    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 i...

  1. Brain areas involved in spatial working memory.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Asselen, M. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Neggers, S.F.W.; Kappelle, L.J.; Frijns, C.J.M.; Postma, A.

    2006-01-01

    Spatial working memory entails the ability to keep spatial information active in working memory over a short period of time. To study the areas of the brain that are involved in spatial working memory, a group of stroke patients was tested with a spatial search task. Patients and healthy controls

  2. 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.

  3. Spike-timing theory of working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szatmáry, Botond; Izhikevich, Eugene M

    2010-08-19

    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.

  4. 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.

  5. Working Memory in the Prefrontal Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shintaro Funahashi

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  6. Working Memory in the Prefrontal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funahashi, Shintaro

    2017-04-27

    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.

  7. 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…

  8. Visual perception and working memory in schizotypal personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, C M; O'Donnell, B F; Niznikiewicz, M A; Voglmaier, M M; McCarley, R W; Shenton, M E

    2000-05-01

    Patients affected by schizophrenia show deficits in both visual perception and working memory. The authors tested early-stage vision and working memory in subjects with schizotypal personality disorder, which has been biologically associated with schizophrenia. Eleven subjects who met DSM-III-R criteria for schizotypal personality disorder and 12 normal comparison subjects were evaluated. Performance thresholds were obtained for tests of visual discrimination and working memory. Both form and trajectory processing were evaluated for each task. Subjects with schizotypal personality disorder showed intact discrimination of form and trajectory but were impaired on working memory tasks. These data suggest that subjects with schizotypal personality disorder, unlike patients affected by schizophrenia, have relatively intact visual perception. Subjects with schizotypal personality disorder do show specific deficits on tasks of comparable difficulty when working memory demands are imposed. Schizotypal personality disorder may be associated with a more specific visual processing deficit than schizophrenia, possibly reflecting disruption of frontal lobe systems subserving visual working memory operations.

  9. Improving Children's Working Memory and Classroom Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    St Clair-Thompson, Helen; Stevens, Ruth; Hunt, Alexandra; Bolder, Emma

    2010-01-01

    Previous research has demonstrated close relationships between working memory and children's scholastic attainment. The aim of the present study was to explore a method of improving working memory, using memory strategy training. Two hundred and fifty-four children aged five to eight years were tested on measures of the phonological loop,…

  10. Meta-Analisis: Working Memory Dan Literasi Pada Anak Disleksia

    OpenAIRE

    Raharjo, Trubus

    2017-01-01

    This meta-analysis aims to find out the working memory relationship with literacy reading in dyslexic children. Neuropsychological disorders can occur in individuals with dyslexia and this is related to reading literacy. Reading literacy is a cognitive ability to generate information, store stimuli and process phonology. Individuals with poor reading ability may be affected by working memory. A total of 2,324 samples and 29 working memory data relationships with literacy reading were collecte...

  11. Deception and Cognitive Load: Expanding Our Horizon with a Working Memory Model

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sporer, Siegfried L

    2016-01-01

    ...) working memory model, which integrates verbal and visual processes in working memory with retrieval from long-term memory and control of action, not only verbal content cues but also nonverbal...

  12. The Central Executive Component of Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    1993-10-31

    dissimilar, concurrent tasks. We suggest that these three problems are indeed closely linked, all concerning a process of selection between alternative goals...a.AssJCATIox 20. U#ATAIION OF ABSILAC OfREPORT of THog PAGE OF ABSTRACTT TT"i rip# 1 Ti4 !ncssit f ed 2 In the working memory model of Baddeley and Hitch...have widespread difficulties with problem -solving, strategy choice etc, but preserved "intelligence". To address this paradox, we considered a

  13. 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.

  14. Genetic correlations between brain volumes and the WAIS-III dimensions of verbal comprehension, working memory, perceptual organization, and processing speed

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Posthuma, Daniëlle; Baare, Wim F.C.; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E.

    2003-01-01

    We recently showed that the correlation of gray and white matter volume with full scale IQ and the Working Memory dimension are completely mediated by common genetic factors (Posthuma et al., 2002). Here we examine whether the other WAIS III dimensions (Verbal Comprehension, Perceptual Organization...... to Working Memory capacity (r = 0.27). This phenotypic correlation is completely due to a common underlying genetic factor. Processing Speed was genetically related to white matter volume (r(g) = 0.39). Perceptual Organization was both genetically (r(g) = 0.39) and environmentally (r(e) = -0.71) related...... to cerebellar volume. Verbal Comprehension was not related to any of the three brain volumes. It is concluded that brain volumes are genetically related to intelligence which suggests that genes that influence brain volume may also be important for intelligence. It is also noted however, that the direction...

  15. Transfer after Working Memory Updating Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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 control group. The working memory training group practiced with three working memory tasks, while the control group trained with three commercial computer games with a low working memory load. The participants trained thrice a week for five weeks, with one training session lasting about 45 minutes. Compared to the control group, the working memory training group showed strongest transfer to an n-back task, followed by working memory updating, which in turn was followed by active working memory capacity. Our results support the view that working memory training produces near transfer effects, and that the degree of transfer depends on the cognitive overlap between the training and transfer measures.

  16. Stress effects on working memory, explicit memory, and implicit memory for neutral and emotional stimuli in healthy men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luethi, Mathias; Meier, Beat; Sandi, Carmen

    2008-01-01

    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 male students were randomly assigned to either the stress or the control group, with stress being induced by the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST). Salivary cortisol levels were assessed repeatedly throughout the experiment to validate stress effects. The results support previous evidence indicating complex effects of stress on different types of memory: A pronounced working memory deficit was associated with exposure to stress. No performance differences between groups of stressed and unstressed subjects were observed in verbal explicit memory (but note that learning and recall took place within 1 h and immediately following stress) or in implicit memory for neutral stimuli. Stress enhanced classical conditioning for negative but not positive stimuli. In addition, stress improved spatial explicit memory. These results reinforce the view that acute stress can be highly disruptive for working memory processing. They provide new evidence for the facilitating effects of stress on implicit memory for negative emotional materials. Our findings are discussed with respect to their potential relevance for psychiatric disorders, such as post traumatic stress disorder.

  17. Stress effects on working memory, explicit memory, and implicit memory for neutral and emotional stimuli in healthy men

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathias Luethi

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available 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 male students were randomly assigned to either the stress or the control group, with stress being induced by the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST. Salivary cortisol levels were assessed repeatedly throughout the experiment to validate stress effects. The results support previous evidence indicating complex effects of stress on different types of memory: A pronounced working memory deficit was associated with exposure to stress. No performance differences between groups of stressed and unstressed subjects were observed in verbal explicit memory (but note that learning and recall took place within 1 hour and immediately following stress or in implicit memory for neutral stimuli. Stress enhanced classical conditioning for negative but not positive stimuli. In addition, stress improved spatial explicit memory. These results reinforce the view that acute stress can be highly disruptive for working memory processing. They provide new evidence for the facilitating effects of stress on implicit memory for negative emotional materials. Our findings are discussed with respect to their potential relevance for psychiatric disorders, such as post traumatic stress disorder.

  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. Neural bases of orthographic long-term memory and working memory in dysgraphia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purcell, Jeremy; Hillis, Argye E.; Capasso, Rita; Miceli, Gabriele

    2016-01-01

    Spelling a word involves the retrieval of information about the word’s letters and their order from long-term memory as well as the maintenance and processing of this information by working memory in preparation for serial production by the motor system. While it is known that brain lesions may selectively affect orthographic long-term memory and working memory processes, relatively little is known about the neurotopographic distribution of the substrates that support these cognitive processes, or the lesions that give rise to the distinct forms of dysgraphia that affect these cognitive processes. To examine these issues, this study uses a voxel-based mapping approach to analyse the lesion distribution of 27 individuals with dysgraphia subsequent to stroke, who were identified on the basis of their behavioural profiles alone, as suffering from deficits only affecting either orthographic long-term or working memory, as well as six other individuals with deficits affecting both sets of processes. The findings provide, for the first time, clear evidence of substrates that selectively support orthographic long-term and working memory processes, with orthographic long-term memory deficits centred in either the left posterior inferior frontal region or left ventral temporal cortex, and orthographic working memory deficits primarily arising from lesions of the left parietal cortex centred on the intraparietal sulcus. These findings also contribute to our understanding of the relationship between the neural instantiation of written language processes and spoken language, working memory and other cognitive skills. PMID:26685156

  20. Working Memory in Children with Developmental Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alloway, Tracy Packiam; Rajendran, Gnanathusharan; Archibald, Lisa M. D.

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to directly compare working memory skills across students with different developmental disorders to investigate whether the uniqueness of their diagnosis would impact memory skills. The authors report findings confirming differential memory profiles on the basis of the following developmental disorders: Specific…

  1. Working Memory in Children with Reading Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gathercole, Susan Elizabeth; Alloway, Tracy Packiam; Willis, Catherine; Adams, Anne-Marie

    2006-01-01

    This study investigated associations between working memory (measured by complex memory tasks) and both reading and mathematics abilities, as well as the possible mediating factors of fluid intelligence, verbal abilities, short-term memory (STM), and phonological awareness, in a sample of 46 6- to 11-year-olds with reading disabilities. As a…

  2. 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.

  3. Transfer after Working Memory Updating Training

    OpenAIRE

    Otto Waris; Anna Soveri; Matti Laine

    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...

  4. 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…

  5. 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.

  6. 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. PMID:22195024

  7. 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

  8. Effects of load and maintenance duration on the time course of information encoding and retrieval in working memory: from perceptual analysis to post-categorization processes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego ePinal

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Working memory (WM involves three cognitive events: information encoding, maintenance and retrieval; these are supported by brain activity in a network of frontal, parietal and temporal regions. Manipulation of WM load and duration of the maintenance period can modulate this activity. Although such modulations have been widely studied using the ERP technique, a precise description of the time course of brain activity during encoding and retrieval is still required. Here, we used this technique and principal component analysis to assess the time course of brain activity during encoding and retrieval in a delayed match to sample task. We also investigated the effects of memory load and duration of the maintenance period on ERP activity. Brain activity was similar during information encoding and retrieval and comprised six temporal factors, which closely matched the latency and scalp distribution of some ERP components: P1, N1, P2, N2, P300 and a slow wave. Changes in memory load modulated task performance and yielded variations in frontal lobe activation. Moreover, the P300 amplitude was smaller in the high than in the low load condition during encoding and retrieval. Conversely, the slow wave amplitude was higher in the high than in the low load condition during encoding, and the same was true for the N2 amplitude during retrieval. Thus, during encoding, memory load appears to modulate the processing resources for context updating and post-categorization processes, and during retrieval it modulates resources for stimulus classification and context updating. Besides, despite the lack of differences in task performance related to duration of the maintenance period, larger N2 amplitude and stronger activation of the left temporal lobe after long than after short maintenance periods were found during information retrieval. Thus, results regarding the duration of maintenance period were complex, and future work is required to test the time-based decay

  9. Amodal completion in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Siyi; Müller, Hermann J; Conci, Markus

    2016-09-01

    Amodal completion refers to the perceptual "filling-in" of partly occluded object fragments. Previous work has shown that object completion occurs efficiently, at early perceptual stages of processing. However, despite efficient early completion, at a later stage, the maintenance of complete-object representations in visual working memory (VWM) may be severely restricted due to limited mnemonic resources being available. To examine for such a limitation, we investigated whether the structure of to-be-remembered objects influences what is encoded and maintained in VWM using a change detection paradigm. Participants were presented with a memory display that contained either "composite" objects, that is, notched shapes abutting an occluding square, or equivalent unoccluded, "simple" objects. The results showed overall increased memory performance for simple relative to composite objects. Moreover, evidence for completion in VWM was found for composite objects that were interpreted as globally completed wholes, relative to local completions or an uncompleted mosaic (baseline) condition. This global completion advantage was obtained only when the "context" of simple objects also supported a global object interpretation. Finally, with an increase in memory set size, the global object advantage decreased substantially. These findings indicate that processes of amodal completion influence VWM performance until some overall-capacity limitation prevents completion. VWM completion processes do not operate automatically; rather, the representation format is determined top-down based on the simple object context provided. Overall, these findings support the notion of VWM as a capacity-limited resource, with storage capacity depending on the structured representation of to-be-remembered objects. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  10. Fusing fMRI and DTI Measures of Brain Function and Structure to Predict Working Memory and Processing Speed Performance among Inter-episode Bipolar Patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenna, Benjamin S.; Theilmann, Rebecca J.; Sutherland, Ashley N.; Eyler, Lisa T.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Evidence for abnormal brain function as measured with diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and cognitive dysfunction have been observed in inter-episode bipolar disorder (BD) patients. We aimed to create a joint statistical model of white matter integrity and functional response measures in explaining differences in working memory and processing speed among BD patients. Method Medicated inter-episode BD (n=26, age=45.2±10.1yrs) and healthy comparison (HC; n=36, age=46.3±11.5yrs) participants completed 51-direction DTI and fMRI while performing a working memory task. Participants also completed a processing speed test. Tract-based spatial statistics identified common white matter tracts where fractional anisotropy was calculated from atlas-defined regions of interest. Brain responses within regions of interest activation clusters were also calculated. Least angle regression was used to fuse fMRI and DTI data to select the best joint neuroimaging predictors of cognitive performance for each group. Results While there was overlap between groups in which regions were most related to cognitive performance, some relationships differed between groups. For working memory accuracy, BD-specific predictors included bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex from fMRI, splenium of the corpus callosum, left uncinate fasciculus, and bilateral superior longitudinal fasciculi from DTI. For processing speed, the genu and splenium of the corpus callosum and right superior longitudinal fasciculus from DTI were significant predictors of cognitive performance selectively for BD patients. Conclusions BD patients demonstrated unique brain-cognition relationships compared to HC. These findings are a first step in discovering how interactions of structural and functional brain abnormalities contribute to cognitive impairments in BD. PMID:26037664

  11. Fusing Functional MRI and Diffusion Tensor Imaging Measures of Brain Function and Structure to Predict Working Memory and Processing Speed Performance among Inter-episode Bipolar Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenna, Benjamin S; Theilmann, Rebecca J; Sutherland, Ashley N; Eyler, Lisa T

    2015-05-01

    Evidence for abnormal brain function as measured with diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and cognitive dysfunction have been observed in inter-episode bipolar disorder (BD) patients. We aimed to create a joint statistical model of white matter integrity and functional response measures in explaining differences in working memory and processing speed among BD patients. Medicated inter-episode BD (n=26; age=45.2±10.1 years) and healthy comparison (HC; n=36; age=46.3±11.5 years) participants completed 51-direction DTI and fMRI while performing a working memory task. Participants also completed a processing speed test. Tract-based spatial statistics identified common white matter tracts where fractional anisotropy was calculated from atlas-defined regions of interest. Brain responses within regions of interest activation clusters were also calculated. Least angle regression was used to fuse fMRI and DTI data to select the best joint neuroimaging predictors of cognitive performance for each group. While there was overlap between groups in which regions were most related to cognitive performance, some relationships differed between groups. For working memory accuracy, BD-specific predictors included bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex from fMRI, splenium of the corpus callosum, left uncinate fasciculus, and bilateral superior longitudinal fasciculi from DTI. For processing speed, the genu and splenium of the corpus callosum and right superior longitudinal fasciculus from DTI were significant predictors of cognitive performance selectively for BD patients. BD patients demonstrated unique brain-cognition relationships compared to HC. These findings are a first step in discovering how interactions of structural and functional brain abnormalities contribute to cognitive impairments in BD.

  12. 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.

  13. Is syntactic working memory language specific?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanja Kljajević

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available One question that has emerged from recent studies on sentence processing pertains to the nature of a specific cognitive mechanism implicated in maintenance of unintegrated syntactic information in ongoing sentence processing. In addition to evidence from language, recent research on musical syntax has suggested that processing of musical sequences may require a similar cognitive mechanism. In this paper evidence is discussed for the implication of syntactic working memory (SWM in processing of language and musical syntax, arithmetic sequences, as well as in complex motor movements used with a specific expressive purpose. The idea is that an anticipatory structure-building component governs interpretation in each of these domains by processing relevant integrations within sequences of structurally dependent elements. The concept of SWM is anchored in representational modularity and the shared syntactic integration resources hypothesis, and empirically supported by neurophysiological and neuroimaging evidence.

  14. Dimensions of working memory dysfunction in schizophrenia.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pukrop, R.; Matuschek, E.; Ruhrmann, S.; Brockhaus, A.; Tendolkar, I.; Bertsch, A.; Klosterkötter, J.

    2003-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the underlying structure of eight working memory tests used to assess prefrontal dysfunction in schizophrenia research [Letter-Number Span (LNS), Digit-Symbol Test (DST), Trail-Making Test B (TMT-B), Delayed Response Task (DRT) for spatial working memory,

  15. Working Memory and Developmental Language Impairments

    Science.gov (United States)

    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…

  16. 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…

  17. 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,…

  18. 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…

  19. Training working memory in kindergarten children: Effects on working memory and early numeracy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kroesbergen, E.H.; Noordende, J.E. van 't; Kolkman, M.E.

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the relationship between working memory and early numeracy. It aimed toexplore the possibility of training young children's working memory and to investigate the effects ofsuch training both on working memory and on the specific domain of early numerical skills. Measuresof

  20. 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.

  1. [Change in short-term memory in pupils of 5-7th classes in the process of class work].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rybakov, V P; Orlova, N I

    2014-01-01

    The subject of this study was the investigation of the short-term memory (STM) of visual (SVM) and auditory (SAM) modality in boys and girls of the middle school age, as in the daytime, and during the course of the school week. The obtained data show that in pupils from the 5th to the 7th class SVM and SAM playback volume in children of both genders is significantly increased, while SVM productivity in boys from 6 - 7th classes is higher than in girls of the same age. The amplitude of day changes in SVM and SAM was found to decrease significantly with the age. In all age groups the range of daily fluctuations in short-term memory of both modalities in boys appears to be higher than in girls. In all age groups a significant part of schoolchildren was revealed to possess optimal forms of temporal organization of short-term memory: morning, day and morning-day types, in that while during the school week in pupils of 5th to 7th classes of both genders the number of optimal waveforms of curves of daily dynamics of short-term memory increases, which contributes to the optimization of their mental performance.

  2. 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.

  3. Inhibition control and working memory capacity in children with SLI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marton, Klara; Kelmenson, Lyudmyla; Pinkhasova, Milana

    2007-01-01

    This study examined the "inefficient inhibition hypothesis" (IIH; Bjorklund & Harnishfeger, 1990; Wilson & Kipp, 1998) in three groups: children with specific language impairment (SLI), age-matched and language-matched controls. The IIH suggests that individuals with efficient inhibition skills perform better on working memory tasks because they are able to keep out irrelevant information from working memory. Children with SLI show processing capacity limitations. This study examined whether the working memory limitations are impacted by inhibition problems in this population. Working memory capacity was measured with a listening span task and children's inhibition errors were categorized. These errors reflected either immediate or delayed inhibition problems and they indicated either contextual distractions or perseverations. Children with SLI produced more inhibition errors than their peers in most categories. The results show an association between inhibition control and working memory capacity, but the direction of causality is not clear.

  4. Implicit sequence learning and working memory: correlated or complicated?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janacsek, Karolina; Nemeth, Dezso

    2013-09-01

    The relationship between implicit/incidental sequence learning and working memory motivated a series of research because it is plausible that higher working memory capacity opens a "larger window" to a sequence, allowing thereby the sequence learning process to be easier. Although the majority of studies found no relationship between implicit sequence learning and working memory capacity, in the past few years several studies have tried to demonstrate the shared or partly shared brain networks underlying these two systems. In order to help the interpretation of these and future results, in this mini-review we suggest the following factors to be taken into consideration before testing the relationship between sequence learning and working memory: 1) the explicitness of the sequence; 2) the method of measuring working memory capacity; 3) online and offline stages of sequence learning; and 4) general skill- and sequence-specific learning. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    OpenAIRE

    Stone, James M.; Towse, John N.

    2015-01-01

    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 ...

  7. Examination stress and components of working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Richard S; Nikolova, Ani; Chang, Dennis J; Weekes, Nicole Y

    2008-03-01

    Previous research suggests that stress can influence a broad range of memory functions. In this study we investigated the effect of a naturalistic stressor, examination stress, on working memory in young adults. In order to accomplish this aim, participants were tested on psychological and hormonal measures of stress and on Digit Span, once during a low stress period and once during a high stress period. The high examination stress condition was associated with an increase in cortisol and subjective impressions of stress. Although Digits Forward performance did not vary with examination stress, Digits Backward performance improved. These findings suggest that mild increases in stress are associated with improvement in the manipulation component of working memory. However, no correlations were found between working memory and either cortisol or psychological stress. Thus the mechanism by which mild naturalistic stressors improve the manipulation component of working memory needs further investigation.

  8. Neuroscientific Insights: Attention, Working Memory, and Inhibitory Control

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    C. Cybele Raver; Clancy Blair

    2016-01-01

    ...)—including the flexible control of attention, the ability to hold information through working memory, and the ability to maintain inhibitory control EF processes are crucial for young children's learning...

  9. Beyond capacity limitations II: effects of lexical processes on word recall in verbal working memory tasks in children with and without specific language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mainela-Arnold, Elina; Evans, Julia L; Coady, Jeffry

    2010-12-01

    This study investigated the impact of lexical processes on target word recall in sentence span tasks in children with and without specific language impairment (SLI). Participants were 42 children (ages 8;2-12;3 [years;months]): 21 with SLI and 21 typically developing peers matched on age and nonverbal IQ. Children completed a sentence span task in which target words to be recalled varied in word frequency and neighborhood density. Two measures of lexical processes were examined: the number of nontarget competitor words activated during a gating task (lexical cohort competition) and word definitions. Neighborhood density had no effect on word recall for either group. However, both groups recalled significantly more high- than low-frequency words. Lexical cohort competition and specificity of semantic representations accounted for unique variance in the number of target word recalled in the SLI and chronological age-matched (CA) groups combined. Performance on verbal working memory span tasks for both SLI and CA children is influenced by word frequency, lexical cohorts, and semantic representations. Future studies need to examine the extent to which verbal working memory capacity is a cognitive construct independent of extant language knowledge representations.

  10. 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.

  11. Collective Biography and Memory Work: Girls Reading Fiction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gannon, Susanne

    2015-01-01

    Collective biography draws on memory work methods developed initially by feminist sociologists (Haug et al., 1987) where people collaboratively examined the social and discursive resources through which they take themselves up as particular gendered subjects in the world. Their own memories become resources to investigate processes of…

  12. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians

    OpenAIRE

    Pallesen, K.J.; Brattico, E.; Bailey, C.J.; Korvenoja, A.; Koivisto, J.; Gjedde, A.; Carlson, Synnöve

    2010-01-01

    Musical competence may confer cognitive advantages that extend beyond processing of familiar musical sounds. Behavioural evidence indicates a general enhancement of both working memory and attention in musicians. It is possible that musicians, due to their training, are better able to maintain 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 memor...

  13. 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.

  14. 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…

  15. Beyond bistability: biophysics and temporal dynamics of working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durstewitz, D; Seamans, J K

    2006-04-28

    Working memory has often been modeled and conceptualized as a kind of binary (bistable) memory switch, where stimuli turn on plateau-like persistent activity in subsets of cells, in line with many in vivo electrophysiological reports. A potentially related form of bistability, termed up- and down-states, has been studied with regard to its synaptic and ionic basis in vivo and in reduced cortical preparations. Also single cell mechanisms for producing bistability have been proposed and investigated in brain slices and computationally. Recently, however, it has been emphasized that clear plateau-like bistable activity is rather rare during working memory tasks, and that neurons exhibit a multitude of different temporally unfolding activity profiles and temporal structure within their spiking dynamics. Hence, working memory seems to be a highly dynamical neural process with yet unknown mappings from dynamical to computational properties. Empirical findings on ramping activity profiles and temporal structure will be reviewed, as well as neural models that attempt to account for it and its computational significance. Furthermore, recent in vivo, neural culture, and in vitro preparations will be discussed that offer new possibilities for studying the biophysical mechanisms underlying computational processes during working memory. These preparations have revealed additional evidence for temporal structure and spatio-temporally organized attractor states in cortical networks, as well as for specific computational properties that may characterize synaptic processing during high-activity states as during working memory. Together such findings may lay the foundations for highly dynamical theories of working memory based on biophysical principles.

  16. Resources masquerading as slots: Flexible allocation of visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donkin, Chris; Kary, Arthur; Tahir, Fatima; Taylor, Robert

    2016-03-01

    Whether the capacity of visual working memory is better characterized by an item-based or a resource-based account continues to be keenly debated. Here, we propose that visual working memory is a flexible resource that is sometimes deployed in a slot-like manner. We develop a computational model that can either encode all items in a memory set, or encode only a subset of those items. A fixed-capacity mnemonic resource is divided among the items in memory. When fewer items are encoded, they are each remembered with higher fidelity, but at the cost of having to rely on an explicit guessing process when probed about an item that is not in memory. We use the new model to test the prediction that participants will more often encode the entire set of items when the demands on memory are predictable. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Realizing the Now-or-Never bottleneck and Chunk-and-Pass processing with Item-Order-Rank working memories and masking field chunking networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossberg, Stephen

    2016-01-01

    Christiansen & Chater's (C&C's) key goals for a language system have been realized by neural models for short-term storage of linguistic items in an Item-Order-Rank working memory, which inputs to Masking Fields that rapidly learn to categorize, or chunk, variable-length linguistic sequences, and choose the contextually most predictive list chunks while linguistic inputs are stored in the working memory.

  18. Working-memory performance is related to spatial breadth of attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kreitz, Carina; Furley, Philip; Memmert, Daniel; Simons, Daniel J

    2015-11-01

    Working memory and attention are closely related constructs. Models of working memory often incorporate an attention component, and some even equate working memory and attentional control. Although some attention-related processes, including inhibitory control of response conflict and interference resolution, are strongly associated with working memory, for other aspects of attention the link is less clear. We examined the association between working-memory performance and attentional breadth, the ability to spread attention spatially. If the link between attention and working memory is broader than inhibitory and interference resolution processes, then working-memory performance might also be associated with other attentional abilities, including attentional breadth. We tested 123 participants on a variety of working-memory and attentional-breadth measures, finding a strong correlation between performances on these two types of tasks. This finding demonstrates that the link between working memory and attention extends beyond inhibitory processes.

  19. Integrating Spatial Working Memory and Remote Memory: Interactions between the Medial Prefrontal Cortex and Hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wirt, Ryan A; Hyman, James M

    2017-04-18

    In recent years, two separate research streams have focused on information sharing between the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and hippocampus (HC). Research into spatial working memory has shown that successful execution of many types of behaviors requires synchronous activity in the theta range between the mPFC and HC, whereas studies of memory consolidation have shown that shifts in area dependency may be temporally modulated. While the nature of information that is being communicated is still unclear, spatial working memory and remote memory recall is reliant on interactions between these two areas. This review will present recent evidence that shows that these two processes are not as separate as they first appeared. We will also present a novel conceptualization of the nature of the medial prefrontal representation and how this might help explain this area's role in spatial working memory and remote memory recall.

  20. 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 performance in noise. It was hypothesized that stressing the working memory system with the presence of noise would impede working memory processes in real time and result in poorer working memory performance in degraded conditions. Twenty children with typical hearing between 8 and 10 years old were tested using 4 auditory working memory tasks (Forward Digit Recall, Backward Digit Recall, Listening Recall Primary, and Listening Recall Secondary). Stimuli were from the standardized Working Memory Test Battery for Children. Each task was administered in quiet and in 4-talker babble noise at 0 dB and -5 dB signal-to-noise ratios. Children's auditory working memory performance was systematically decreased in the presence of multitalker babble noise compared with quiet. Differences between low-complexity and high-complexity tasks were observed, with children performing more poorly on tasks with greater storage and processing demands. There was no interaction between noise and complexity of task. All tasks were negatively impacted similarly by the addition of noise. Auditory working memory performance was negatively impacted by the presence of multitalker babble noise. Regardless of complexity of task, noise had a similar effect on performance. These findings suggest that the addition of noise inhibits auditory working memory processes in real time for school-age children.

  1. Effects of load and maintenance duration on the time course of information encoding and retrieval in working memory: from perceptual analysis to post-categorization processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinal, Diego; Zurrón, Montserrat; Díaz, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    information encoding, maintenance, and retrieval; these are supported by brain activity in a network of frontal, parietal and temporal regions. Manipulation of WM load and duration of the maintenance period can modulate this activity. Although such modulations have been widely studied using the event-related potentials (ERP) technique, a precise description of the time course of brain activity during encoding and retrieval is still required. Here, we used this technique and principal component analysis to assess the time course of brain activity during encoding and retrieval in a delayed match to sample task. We also investigated the effects of memory load and duration of the maintenance period on ERP activity. Brain activity was similar during information encoding and retrieval and comprised six temporal factors, which closely matched the latency and scalp distribution of some ERP components: P1, N1, P2, N2, P300, and a slow wave. Changes in memory load modulated task performance and yielded variations in frontal lobe activation. Moreover, the P300 amplitude was smaller in the high than in the low load condition during encoding and retrieval. Conversely, the slow wave amplitude was higher in the high than in the low load condition during encoding, and the same was true for the N2 amplitude during retrieval. Thus, during encoding, memory load appears to modulate the processing resources for context updating and post-categorization processes, and during retrieval it modulates resources for stimulus classification and context updating. Besides, despite the lack of differences in task performance related to duration of the maintenance period, larger N2 amplitude and stronger activation of the left temporal lobe after long than after short maintenance periods were found during information retrieval. Thus, results regarding the duration of maintenance period were complex, and future work is required to test the time-based decay theory predictions.

  2. Variation in Working Memory Capacity and Temporal-Contextual Retrieval from Episodic Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spillers, Gregory J.; Unsworth, Nash

    2011-01-01

    Unsworth and Engle (2007) recently proposed a model of working memory capacity characterized by, among other things, the ability to conduct a strategic, cue-dependent search of long-term memory. Although this ability has been found to mediate individual variation in a number of higher order cognitive tasks, the component processes involved remain…

  3. 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.

  4. Brain Connectivity Related to Working Memory Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hampson, Michelle; Driesen, Naomi R; Skudlarski, Pawel; Gore, John C; Constable, R. Todd

    2006-01-01

    .... This study investigated the functional connectivity between the PCC and MFG/vACC during a working memory task and at rest by examining temporal correlations in magnetic resonance signal levels between the regions...

  5. 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…

  6. A Working Memory System With Distributed Executive Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandierendonck, André

    2016-01-01

    Working memory consists of domain-specific storage facilities and domain-general executive control processes. In some working memory theories, these control processes are accounted for via a homunculus, the central executive. In the present article, the author defends a mechanistic view of executive control by adopting the position that executive control is situated in the context of goal-directed behavior to maintain and protect the goal and to select an action to attain the goal. On the basis of findings in task switching and dual tasking, he proposes an adapted multicomponent working memory model in which the central executive is replaced by three interacting components: an executive memory that maintains the task set, a collection of acquired procedural rules, and an engine that executes the procedural rules that match the ensemble of working memory contents. The strongest among the rules that match the ensemble of working memory contents is applied, resulting in changes of the working memory contents or in motor actions. According to this model, goals are attained when the route to the goals is known or can be searched when the route is unknown (problem solving). Empirical evidence for this proposal and new predictions are discussed. © The Author(s) 2015.

  7. Reducing State Anxiety Using Working Memory Maintenance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balderston, Nicholas L; Hsiung, Abigail; Liu, Jeffrey; Ernst, Monique; Grillon, Christian

    2017-07-19

    The purpose of this protocol is to explain how to examine the relationship between working memory processes and anxiety by combining the Sternberg Working Memory (WM) and the threat of shock paradigms. In the Sternberg WM paradigm, subjects are required to maintain a series of letters in the WM for a brief interval and respond by identifying whether the position of a given letter in the series matches a numerical prompt. In the threat of shock paradigm, subjects are exposed to alternating blocks where they are either at risk of receiving unpredictable presentations of a mild electric shock or are safe from the shock. Anxiety is probed throughout the safe and threat blocks using the acoustic startle reflex, which is potentiated under threat (Anxiety-Potentiated Startle (APS)). By conducting the Sternberg WM paradigm during the threat of shock and probing the startle response during either the WM maintenance interval or the intertrial interval, it is possible to determine the effect of WM maintenance on APS.

  8. Life Challenge Memory Work: Using Collaborative Autobiography to Understand Ourselves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith C. Lapadat PhD

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Using memory work, a group of eight adults in a university setting wrote, shared, and theorized memories of life challenges we experienced. In this study, we have adapted and refined memory work as a method, and we model this by presenting and examining a comprehensive case example of memory work. Our memories were of four main types: stories of dangerous events, the unruly body/self, leaving home/returning home, and negotiating social relationships. Processes of writing, performing, witnessing, and theorizing led us to identify ruptures and turning points that revealed ways in which we have been culturally inscribed as well as our agency in integrating social discourses into our identity. Our results point to the value of collaborative autobiography as a route to insight, a way to build community, and a means to democratize research.

  9. Neural bases of orthographic long-term memory and working memory in dysgraphia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, Brenda; Purcell, Jeremy; Hillis, Argye E; Capasso, Rita; Miceli, Gabriele

    2016-02-01

    Spelling a word involves the retrieval of information about the word's letters and their order from long-term memory as well as the maintenance and processing of this information by working memory in preparation for serial production by the motor system. While it is known that brain lesions may selectively affect orthographic long-term memory and working memory processes, relatively little is known about the neurotopographic distribution of the substrates that support these cognitive processes, or the lesions that give rise to the distinct forms of dysgraphia that affect these cognitive processes. To examine these issues, this study uses a voxel-based mapping approach to analyse the lesion distribution of 27 individuals with dysgraphia subsequent to stroke, who were identified on the basis of their behavioural profiles alone, as suffering from deficits only affecting either orthographic long-term or working memory, as well as six other individuals with deficits affecting both sets of processes. The findings provide, for the first time, clear evidence of substrates that selectively support orthographic long-term and working memory processes, with orthographic long-term memory deficits centred in either the left posterior inferior frontal region or left ventral temporal cortex, and orthographic working memory deficits primarily arising from lesions of the left parietal cortex centred on the intraparietal sulcus. These findings also contribute to our understanding of the relationship between the neural instantiation of written language processes and spoken language, working memory and other cognitive skills. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Rethinking the connection between working memory and language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, Lisa M D; Harder Griebeling, Katherine

    2016-05-01

    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. To examine the processing function of working memory in children with low language (LL) by employing tasks imposing increasing processing loads with constant storage demands individually adjusted based on each participant's short-term memory capacity. School-age groups with LL (n = 17) and typical language with either average (n = 28) or above-average nonverbal intelligence (n = 15) completed complex working memory-span tasks varying processing load while keeping storage demands constant, varying storage demands while keeping processing load constant, simple storage-span tasks, and measures of language and nonverbal intelligence. Teachers completed questionnaires about cognition and learning. Significantly lower scores were found for the LL than either matched group on storage-based tasks, but no group differences were found on the tasks varying processing load. Teachers' ratings of oral expression and mathematics abilities discriminated those who did or did not complete the most challenging cognitive tasks. The results implicate a deficit in the phonological storage but not in the central executive component of working memory for children with LL. Teacher ratings may reveal personality traits related to perseverance of effort in cognitive research. © 2015 Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.

  11. Inhibition control and working memory capacity in children with SLI

    OpenAIRE

    Marton, Klara; Kelmenson, Lyudmyla; Pinkhasova, Milana

    2007-01-01

    This study examined the “inefficient inhibition hypothesis” (IIH; Bjorklund & Harnishfeger, 1990; Wilson & Kipp, 1998) in three groups: children with specific language impairment (SLI), age-matched and language-matched controls. The IIH suggests that individuals with efficient inhibition skills perform better on working memory tasks because they are able to keep out irrelevant information from working memory. Children with SLI show processing capacity limitations. This study examined whether ...

  12. 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.

  13. The modulation of auditory novelty processing by working memory load in school age children and adults: a combined behavioral and event-related potential study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Widmann Andreas

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We investigated the processing of task-irrelevant and unexpected novel sounds and its modulation by working-memory load in children aged 9-10 and in adults. Environmental sounds (novels were embedded amongst frequently presented standard sounds in an auditory-visual distraction paradigm. Each sound was followed by a visual target. In two conditions, participants evaluated the position of a visual stimulus (0-back, low load or compared the position of the current stimulus with the one two trials before (2-back, high load. Processing of novel sounds were measured with reaction times, hit rates and the auditory event-related brain potentials (ERPs Mismatch Negativity (MMN, P3a, Reorienting Negativity (RON and visual P3b. Results In both memory load conditions novels impaired task performance in adults whereas they improved performance in children. Auditory ERPs reflect age-related differences in the time-window of the MMN as children showed a positive ERP deflection to novels whereas adults lack an MMN. The attention switch towards the task irrelevant novel (reflected by P3a was comparable between the age groups. Adults showed more efficient reallocation of attention (reflected by RON under load condition than children. Finally, the P3b elicited by the visual target stimuli was reduced in both age groups when the preceding sound was a novel. Conclusion Our results give new insights in the development of novelty processing as they (1 reveal that task-irrelevant novel sounds can result in contrary effects on the performance in a visual primary task in children and adults, (2 show a positive ERP deflection to novels rather than an MMN in children, and (3 reveal effects of auditory novels on visual target processing.

  14. Role of Working Memory in Task Switching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Vandierendonck

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available A review shows that task switching under memory load yields variable patterns of findings with some studies showing no interaction at all, while other studies provide evidence for an interaction. A model of working memory is presented consisting of a declarative storage component for instantiation of information and an executive storage module that contains task sets and task rules. The model is applied to two studies with very similar methodologies but yielding contrasting results, namely the task-span procedure (Logan, 2004 and the time-based resource sharing procedure (Liefooghe, Barrouillet, Vandierendonck, & Camos, 2008, when task switching is performed under a working memory load. The model accounts for the contradictory results, supporting the general hypothesis that task switching calls on working memory.

  15. Working memory capacity and addiction treatment outcomes in adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houck, Jon M; Feldstein Ewing, Sarah W

    2017-07-20

    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.

  16. Is Working Memory Involved in the Transcribing and Editing of Texts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, John R.; Chenoweth, N. Ann

    2006-01-01

    Generally, researchers agree that verbal working memory plays an important role in cognitive processes involved in writing. However, there is disagreement about which cognitive processes make use of working memory. Kellogg has proposed that verbal working memory is involved in translating but not in editing or producing (i.e., typing) text. In…

  17. ERP effects of methylphenidate and working memory load in healthy adults during a serial visual working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studer, Petra; Wangler, Susanne; Diruf, Martin S; Kratz, Oliver; Moll, Gunther H; Heinrich, Hartmut

    2010-09-27

    The objective of the study was to investigate neuronal processing during the encoding, retention and retrieval phases of a serial visual working memory task. Particularly, we were interested in how these phases are affected by working memory load and how processing is modulated by methylphenidate. Healthy adults were asked to memorize the order of four, five or six pictures under methylphenidate (20mg) and under placebo while brain electrical activity was recorded. On the performance level, the number of correct responses decreased with increasing working memory load. Concerning brain electrical activity, in the encoding phase P3 amplitudes increased at midline electrodes with increasing memory load while load had no effect in the retention and retrieval phase. Medication neither influenced performance nor the different processing stages significantly. Our data provide evidence that during the encoding phase more attentional resources are allocated in trials with higher load as reflected by larger P3 amplitudes. (c) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. 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.

  19. How working memory enables fluid reasoning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehn, Milton J

    2017-01-01

    The strong relation between fluid reasoning (Gf) and working memory (WM) is well established. Gf depends on WM to hold necessary information in a span of awareness until the reasoning task is completed. The influence of time constraints on the Gf-WM relation indicates that the abilities to control attention and inhibit interference may be the underlying traits that account for the Gf-WM relation. Neuroanatomy also explains the interrelations among these cognitive processes. Neuroimaging (fMRI) studies have confirmed that the same regions of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) are active during Gf and WM functioning. The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dPFC) is also a critical structure for attention functions and inhibition.

  20. Examining distinct working memory processes in children and adolescents using fMRI: Results and validation of a modified Brown-Peterson paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siffredi, Vanessa; Barrouillet, Pierre; Spencer-Smith, Megan; Vaessen, Maarten; Anderson, Vicki; Vuilleumier, Patrik

    2017-01-01

    Verbal working memory (WM) comprises different processes (encoding, maintenance, retrieval) that are often compromised in brain diseases, but their neural correlates have not yet been examined in childhood and adolescence. To probe WM processes and associated neural correlates in developmental samples, and obtain comparable effects across different ages and populations, we designed an adapted Brown-Peterson task (verbal encoding and retrieval combined with verbal and visual concurrent tasks during maintenance) to implement during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). In a sample of typically developing children and adolescents (n = 16), aged 8 to 16 years, our paradigm successfully identified distinct patterns of activation for encoding, maintenance, and retrieval. While encoding activated perceptual systems in posterior and ventral visual regions, retrieval activated fronto-parietal regions associated with executive control and attention. We found a different impact of verbal versus visual concurrent processing during WM maintenance: at retrieval, the former condition evoked greater activations in visual cortex, as opposed to selective involvement of language-related areas in left temporal cortex in the latter condition. These results are in accord with WM models, suggesting greater competition for processing resources when retrieval follows within-domain compared with cross-domain interference. This pattern was found regardless of age. Our study provides a novel paradigm to investigate distinct WM brain systems with reliable results across a wide age range in developmental populations, and suitable for participants with different WM capacities.

  1. The Relationship Between Working Memory Capacity and Executive Functioning: Evidence for a Common Executive Attention Construct

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCabe, David P.; Roediger, Henry L.; McDaniel, Mark A.; Balota, David A.; Hambrick, David Z.

    2010-01-01

    Attentional control has been conceptualized as executive functioning by neuropsychologists and as working memory capacity by experimental psychologists. We examined the relationship between these constructs using a factor analytic approach in an adult lifespan sample. Several tests of working memory capacity and executive function were administered to over 200 subjects between the ages of 18-90 years old, along with tests of processing speed and episodic memory. The correlation between working memory capacity and executive functioning constructs was very strong (r = .97), but correlations between these constructs and processing speed were considerably weaker (r's ≈ .79). Controlling for working memory capacity or executive function eliminated age effects on episodic memory, and working memory capacity or executive function accounted for variance in episodic memory beyond that accounted for by processing speed. We conclude that tests of working memory capacity and executive function share a common underlying executive attention component that is strongly predictive of higher-level cognition. PMID:20230116

  2. Evolution of Models of Working Memory and Cognitive Resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingfield, Arthur

    2016-01-01

    The goal of this article is to trace the evolution of models of working memory and cognitive resources from the early 20th century to today. Linear flow models of information processing common in the 1960s and 1970s centered on the transfer of verbal information from a limited-capacity short-term memory store to long-term memory through rehearsal. Current conceptions see working memory as a dynamic system that includes both maintaining and manipulating information through a series of interactive components that include executive control and attentional resources. These models also reflect the evolution from an almost exclusive concentration on working memory for verbal materials to inclusion of a visual working memory component. Although differing in postulated mechanisms and emphasis, these evolving viewpoints all share the recognition that human information processing is a limited-capacity system with limits on the amount of information that can be attended to, remain activated in memory, and utilized at one time. These limitations take on special importance in spoken language comprehension, especially when the stimuli have complex linguistic structures or listening effort is increased by poor acoustic quality or reduced hearing acuity.

  3. Dynamic interactions between visual working memory and saccade target selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneegans, Sebastian; Spencer, John P.; Schöner, Gregor; Hwang, Seongmin; Hollingworth, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Recent psychophysical experiments have shown that working memory for visual surface features interacts with saccadic motor planning, even in tasks where the saccade target is unambiguously specified by spatial cues. Specifically, a match between a memorized color and the color of either the designated target or a distractor stimulus influences saccade target selection, saccade amplitudes, and latencies in a systematic fashion. To elucidate these effects, we present a dynamic neural field model in combination with new experimental data. The model captures the neural processes underlying visual perception, working memory, and saccade planning relevant to the psychophysical experiment. It consists of a low-level visual sensory representation that interacts with two separate pathways: a spatial pathway implementing spatial attention and saccade generation, and a surface feature pathway implementing color working memory and feature attention. Due to bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and feature attention in the model, the working memory content can indirectly exert an effect on perceptual processing in the low-level sensory representation. This in turn biases saccadic movement planning in the spatial pathway, allowing the model to quantitatively reproduce the observed interaction effects. The continuous coupling between representations in the model also implies that modulation should be bidirectional, and model simulations provide specific predictions for complementary effects of saccade target selection on visual working memory. These predictions were empirically confirmed in a new experiment: Memory for a sample color was biased toward the color of a task-irrelevant saccade target object, demonstrating the bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and perceptual processing. PMID:25228628

  4. Dynamic interactions between visual working memory and saccade target selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneegans, Sebastian; Spencer, John P; Schöner, Gregor; Hwang, Seongmin; Hollingworth, Andrew

    2014-09-16

    Recent psychophysical experiments have shown that working memory for visual surface features interacts with saccadic motor planning, even in tasks where the saccade target is unambiguously specified by spatial cues. Specifically, a match between a memorized color and the color of either the designated target or a distractor stimulus influences saccade target selection, saccade amplitudes, and latencies in a systematic fashion. To elucidate these effects, we present a dynamic neural field model in combination with new experimental data. The model captures the neural processes underlying visual perception, working memory, and saccade planning relevant to the psychophysical experiment. It consists of a low-level visual sensory representation that interacts with two separate pathways: a spatial pathway implementing spatial attention and saccade generation, and a surface feature pathway implementing color working memory and feature attention. Due to bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and feature attention in the model, the working memory content can indirectly exert an effect on perceptual processing in the low-level sensory representation. This in turn biases saccadic movement planning in the spatial pathway, allowing the model to quantitatively reproduce the observed interaction effects. The continuous coupling between representations in the model also implies that modulation should be bidirectional, and model simulations provide specific predictions for complementary effects of saccade target selection on visual working memory. These predictions were empirically confirmed in a new experiment: Memory for a sample color was biased toward the color of a task-irrelevant saccade target object, demonstrating the bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and perceptual processing. © 2014 ARVO.

  5. Verbal Working Memory in Children With Cochlear Implants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nittrouer, Susan; Caldwell-Tarr, Amanda; Low, Keri E; Lowenstein, Joanna H

    2017-11-09

    Verbal working memory in children with cochlear implants and children with normal hearing was examined. 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. A dual-component model of working memory was adopted, and a serial recall task measured storage and processing. Potential predictor variables were phonological awareness, vocabulary knowledge, nonverbal IQ, and several treatment variables. Potential dependent functions were literacy, expressive language, and speech-in-noise recognition. Children with cochlear implants showed deficits in storage and processing, similar in size to those at second grade. Predictors of verbal working memory differed across groups: Phonological awareness explained the most variance in children with normal hearing; vocabulary explained the most variance in children with cochlear implants. Treatment variables explained little of the variance. Where potentially dependent functions were concerned, verbal working memory accounted for little variance once the variance explained by other predictors was removed. The verbal working memory deficits of children with cochlear implants arise due to signal degradation, which limits their abilities to acquire phonological awareness. That hinders their abilities to store items using a phonological code.

  6. Visual Perception and Working Memory in Schizotypal Personality Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Carrie M.; O’Donnell, Brian F.; Niznikiewicz, Margaret A.; Voglmaier, Martina M.; McCarley, Robert W.; Shenton, Martha E.

    2010-01-01

    Objective Patients affected by schizophrenia show deficits in both visual perception and working memory. The authors tested early-stage vision and working memory in subjects with schizotypal personality disorder, which has been biologically associated with schizophrenia. Method Eleven subjects who met DSM-III-R criteria for schizotypal personality disorder and 12 normal comparison subjects were evaluated. Performance thresholds were obtained for tests of visual discrimination and working memory. Both form and trajectory processing were evaluated for each task. Results Subjects with schizotypal personality disorder showed intact discrimination of form and trajectory but were impaired on working memory tasks. Conclusions These data suggest that subjects with schizotypal personality disorder, unlike patients affected by schizophrenia, have relatively intact visual perception. Subjects with schizotypal personality disorder do show specific deficits on tasks of comparable difficulty when working memory demands are imposed. Schizotypal personality disorder may be associated with a more specific visual processing deficit than schizophrenia, possibly reflecting disruption of frontal lobe systems subserving visual working memory operations. PMID:10784472

  7. Brain Training Game Boosts Executive Functions, Working Memory and Processing Speed in the Young Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    OpenAIRE

    Rui Nouchi; Yasuyuki Taki; Hikaru Takeuchi; Hiroshi Hashizume; Takayuki Nozawa; Toshimune Kambara; Atsushi Sekiguchi; Carlos Makoto Miyauchi; Yuka Kotozaki; Haruka Nouchi; Ryuta Kawashima

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Do brain training games work? The beneficial effects of brain training games are expected to transfer to other cognitive functions. Yet in all honesty, beneficial transfer effects of the commercial brain training games in young adults have little scientific basis. Here we investigated the impact of the brain training game (Brain Age) on a wide range of cognitive functions in young adults. METHODS: We conducted a double-blind (de facto masking) randomized controlled trial using a p...

  8. Individual Differences in L2 Processing of Multi-word Phrases: Effects of Working Memory and Personality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kerz, E.; Wiechmann, D.; Mitkov, R.

    2017-01-01

    There is an accumulating body of evidence that knowledge of the statistics of multiword phrases (MWP) facilitates native language learning and processing both in children and adults. However, less is known about whether adult second language (L2) learners are able to develop native-like sensitivity

  9. 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.

  10. 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).

  11. Working memory and the revision of syntactic and discourse ambiguities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, William S; Caplan, David; Ostrowski, Adam; Michaud, Jennifer; Guarino, Anthony J; Waters, Gloria

    2015-03-01

    Two hundred participants, 50 in each of 4 age ranges (19-29 years, 30-49 years, 50-69 years, 70-90 years) were tested for short-term working memory, speed of processing, and online processing of 3 types of sentences in which an initially assigned syntactic structure and/or semantic interpretation had to be revised. Self-paced reading times were longer for the segments that signaled the need for revision; there also were interactions of age and sentence type and speed of processing and sentence type, but not of working memory and sentence type on reading times for these segments. The results provide evidence that working memory does not support the processes that revise the structure and interpretation of sentences and discourse. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  12. 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.

  13. Literacy versus formal schooling: influence on working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kosmidis, Mary H; Zafiri, Maria; Politimou, Nina

    2011-11-01

    Previous work has demonstrated that illiterate individuals exhibit reduced performance on measures of working memory, relative to a literate cohort. Given the relationship of working memory to phonological processing, which is enhanced by literacy, we sought to examine working memory in illiterate individuals and whether differences can be attributed to artifacts of the test typically used. To the extent that differences actually exist, we also examined whether they can be attributed to the effects of literacy per se or whether they reflect the effects of formal schooling. To accomplish this, we explored the performance of four groups of participants (illiterate, functionally illiterate, self-educated literate, school-educated literate), on five tests of working memory. Illiterate groups performed more poorly than the literate groups on all measures except the "Spatial Span" forward condition and "Remembering a New Route." Our results suggest that differences in working memory performance among literate and illiterate individuals can be attributed to literacy per se. Formal schooling, however, appears to enhance working memory skills. Finally, we stress the need to use tools that are not influenced by literacy and schooling effects in the clinical assessment of illiterate individuals.

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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)

  17. Modulation of working memory updating: Does long-term memory lexical association matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artuso, Caterina; Palladino, Paola

    2016-02-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate how working memory updating for verbal material is modulated by enduring properties of long-term memory. Two coexisting perspectives that account for the relation between long-term representation and short-term performance were addressed. First, evidence suggests that performance is more closely linked to lexical properties, that is, co-occurrences within the language. Conversely, other evidence suggests that performance is linked more to long-term representations which do not entail lexical/linguistic representations. Our aim was to investigate how these two kinds of long-term memory associations (i.e., lexical or nonlexical) modulate ongoing working memory activity. Therefore, we manipulated (between participants) the strength of the association in letters based on either frequency of co-occurrences (lexical) or contiguity along the sequence of the alphabet (nonlexical). Results showed a cost in working memory updating for strongly lexically associated stimuli only. Our findings advance knowledge of how lexical long-term memory associations between consonants affect working memory updating and, in turn, contribute to the study of factors which impact the updating process across memory systems.

  18. Computational principles of working memory in sentence comprehension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Richard L; Vasishth, Shravan; Van Dyke, Julie A

    2006-10-01

    Understanding a sentence requires a working memory of the partial products of comprehension, so that linguistic relations between temporally distal parts of the sentence can be rapidly computed. We describe an emerging theoretical framework for this working memory system that incorporates several independently motivated principles of memory: a sharply limited attentional focus, rapid retrieval of item (but not order) information subject to interference from similar items, and activation decay (forgetting over time). A computational model embodying these principles provides an explanation of the functional capacities and severe limitations of human processing, as well as accounts of reading times. The broad implication is that the detailed nature of cross-linguistic sentence processing emerges from the interaction of general principles of human memory with the specialized task of language comprehension.

  19. Attentional capture by working memory contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Yi

    2010-06-01

    There has been controversy on whether working memory (WM) contents automatically guide attention. The present study tried to replicate the effect of WM-based attentional capture using an adaption of Downing's (2000) paradigm, in which WM and attentional capture were combined. Subjects were presented with an attention display containing two objects, one of which could be precued by a matching item being held in WM. As measured by a probe discrimination task, the memory-matching object had a privileged status to capture attention regardless of the stimulus onset asynchronies between the memory cue and the attention display, even when there was absolutely no benefit for subjects to bias attention in favour of the memory match. These results suggest that WM contents guide attention in an involuntary manner. The implications of current findings for understanding of WM effects on visual selection are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. The Role of Visual and Phonological Representations in the Processing of Written Words by Readers with Diagnosed Dyslexia: Evidence from a Working Memory Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Paul; Kupfermann, Amirit

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the study was to elucidate the nature and efficiency of the strategies that readers with phonological dyslexia use for temporary retention of written words in Working Memory (WM). Data was gathered through a paradigm whereby participants had to identify serially presented written (target) words from within larger word pools according to…

  1. Individual differences in working memory capacity and workload capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ju-Chi eYu

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the relationship between working memory capacity (WMC and workload capacity (WLC. Each participant performed an operation span (OSPAN task to measure his/her WMC and three redundant-target detection tasks to measure his/her WLC. WLC was computed non-parametrically (Experiments 1 and 2 and parametrically (Experiment 2. Both levels of analyses showed that participants high in WMC had larger WLC than those low in WMC only when redundant information came from visual and auditory modalities, suggesting that high-WMC participants had superior processing capacity in dealing with redundant visual and auditory information. This difference was eliminated when multiple processes required processing for only a single working memory subsystem in a color-shape detection task and a double-dot detection task. These results highlighted the role of executive control in integrating and binding information from the two working memory subsystems for perceptual decision making.

  2. Automatization and working memory capacity in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Raalten, Tamar R; Ramsey, Nick F; Jansma, J Martijn; Jager, Gerry; Kahn, René S

    2008-03-01

    Working memory (WM) dysfunction in schizophrenia is characterized by inefficient WM recruitment and reduced capacity, but it is not yet clear how these relate to one another. In controls practice of certain cognitive tasks induces automatization, which is associated with reduced WM recruitment and increased capacity of concurrent task performance. We therefore investigated whether inefficient function and reduced capacity in schizophrenia was associated with a failure in automatization. FMRI data was acquired with a verbal WM task with novel and practiced stimuli in 18 schizophrenia patients and 18 controls. Participants performed a dual-task outside the scanner to test WM capacity. Patients showed intact performance on the WM task, which was paralleled by excessive WM activity. Practice improved performance and reduced WM activity in both groups. The difference in WM activity after practice predicted performance cost in controls but not in patients. In addition, patients showed disproportionately poor dual-task performance compared to controls, especially when processing information that required continuous adjustment in WM. Our findings support the notion of inefficient WM function and reduced capacity in schizophrenia. This was not related to a failure in automatization, but was evident when processing continuously changing information. This suggests that inefficient WM function and reduced capacity may be related to an inability to process information requiring frequent updating.

  3. Working Memory and Strategy Use Contribute to Gender Differences in Spatial Ability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lu; Carr, Martha

    2014-01-01

    In this review, a new model that is grounded in information-processing theory is proposed to account for gender differences in spatial ability. The proposed model assumes that the relative strength of working memory, as expressed by the ratio of visuospatial working memory to verbal working memory, influences the type of strategies used on spatial…

  4. Why is Information Displaced from Visual Working Memory during Visual Search?

    OpenAIRE

    Woodman, Geoffrey F.; Luck, Steven J.

    2009-01-01

    Research has shown that performing visual search while maintaining representations in visual working memory displaces up to one object’s worth of information from memory. This memory displacement has previously been attributed to a nonspecific disruption of the memory representation by the mere presentation of the visual search array, and the goal of the present study was to determine whether it instead reflects the use of visual working memory in the actual search process. The first hypothes...

  5. FMRI of working memory impairment after recovery from subarachnoid hemorrhage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellmore, Timothy M; Rohlffs, Fiona; Khursheed, Faraz

    2013-01-01

    Recovery from aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is often incomplete and accompanied by subtle but persistent cognitive deficits. Previous neuropsychological reports indicate these deficits include most prominently memory impairment, with working memory particularly affected. The neural basis of these memory deficits remains unknown and unexplored by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). In the present study, patients who experienced (SAH) underwent fMRI during the performance of a verbal working memory paradigm. Behavioral results indicated a subtle but statistically significant impairment relative to healthy subjects in working memory performance accuracy, which was accompanied by relatively increased blood-oxygen level dependent signal in widespread left and right hemisphere cortical areas during periods of encoding, maintenance, and retrieval. Activity increases remained after factoring out inter-individual differences in age and task performance, and included most notably left hemisphere regions associated with phonological loop processing, bilateral sensorimotor regions, and right hemisphere dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. We conclude that deficits in verbal working memory following recovery from (SAH) are accompanied by widespread differences in hemodynamic correlates of neural activity. These differences are discussed with respect to the immediate and delayed focal and global brain damage that can occur following (SAH), and the possibility that this damage induces subcortical disconnection and subsequent decreased efficiency in neural processing.

  6. Neuroscientific Insights: Attention, Working Memory, and Inhibitory Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raver, C. Cybele; Blair, Clancy

    2016-01-01

    In this article, Cybele Raver and Clancy Blair explore a group of cognitive processes called executive function (EF)--including the flexible control of attention, the ability to hold information through working memory, and the ability to maintain inhibitory control. EF processes are crucial for young children's learning. On the one hand, they can…

  7. Contributions of Spatial Working Memory to Visuomotor Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anguera, Joaquin A.; Reuter-Lorenz, Patricia A.; Willingham, Daniel T.; Seidler, Rachael D.

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies of motor learning have described the importance of cognitive processes during the early stages of learning; however, the precise nature of these processes and their neural correlates remains unclear. The present study investigated whether spatial working memory (SWM) contributes to visuomotor adaptation depending on the stage of…

  8. Selective visual working memory in fear of spiders: The role of automaticity and material-specificity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reinecke, A.; Becker, E.S.; Rinck, M.

    2009-01-01

    Following cognitive models of anxiety, biases occur if threat processing is automatic versus strategic. Therefore, most of these models predict attentional bias, but not explicit memory bias. We suggest dividing memory into the highly automatic working memory (WM) component versus long-term memory

  9. 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.

  10. Working Memory and Children's Mental Addition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, John W.; Hitch, Graham J.

    1997-01-01

    Two experiments investigated extent to which English- and German-speaking childrens' mental arithmetic was constrained by working memory. Found higher mental addition spans when numbers were visible throughout calculation than when not. Variation in addition span with age and arithmetical operation difficulty approximated to a linear function of…

  11. 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…

  12. 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 ...

  13. 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

  14. Visual Working Memory for Observed Actions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Justin N.

    2007-01-01

    Human society depends on the ability to remember the actions of other individuals, which is information that must be stored in a temporary buffer to guide behavior after actions have been observed. To date, however, the storage capacity, contents, and architecture of working memory for observed actions are unknown. In this article, the author…

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. 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…

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. 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.

  1. Working memory capacity in Generalized Social Phobia

    OpenAIRE

    Amir, Nader; Bomyea, Jessica

    2011-01-01

    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 (GSP). Moreover, few studies have examined the role of threat-relevant content in working ...

  2. Neurocognitive predictors of mathematical processing in school-aged children with spina bifida and their typically developing peers: Attention, working memory, and fine motor skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghubar, Kimberly P; Barnes, Marcia A; Dennis, Maureen; Cirino, Paul T; Taylor, Heather; Landry, Susan

    2015-11-01

    Math and attention are related in neurobiological and behavioral models of mathematical cognition. This study employed model-driven assessments of attention and math in children with spina bifida myelomeningocele (SBM), who have known math difficulties and specific attentional deficits, to more directly examine putative relations between attention and mathematical processing. The relation of other domain general abilities and math was also investigated. Participants were 9.5-year-old children with SBM (n = 44) and typically developing children (n = 50). Participants were administered experimental exact and approximate arithmetic tasks, and standardized measures of math fluency and calculation. Cognitive measures included the Attention Network Test (ANT), and standardized measures of fine motor skills, verbal working memory (WM), and visual-spatial WM. Children with SBM performed similarly to peers on exact arithmetic, but more poorly on approximate and standardized arithmetic measures. On the ANT, children with SBM differed from controls on orienting attention, but not on alerting and executive attention. Multiple mediation models showed that fine motor skills and verbal WM mediated the relation of group to approximate arithmetic; fine motor skills and visual-spatial WM mediated the relation of group to math fluency; and verbal and visual-spatial WM mediated the relation of group to math calculation. Attention was not a significant mediator of the effects of group for any aspect of math in this study. Results are discussed with reference to models of attention, WM, and mathematical cognition. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  3. Hyperactivity in boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: The influence of underlying visuospatial working memory and self-control processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patros, Connor H G; Alderson, R Matt; Hudec, Kristen L; Tarle, Stephanie J; Lea, Sarah E

    2017-02-01

    Changes in motor activity were examined across control and executive function (EF) tasks that differ with regard to demands placed on visuospatial working memory (VS-WM) and self-control processes. Motor activity was measured via actigraphy in 8- to 12-year-old boys with (n=15) and without (n=17) attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) during the completion of VS-WM, self-control, and control tasks. Results indicated that boys with ADHD, relative to typically developing boys, exhibited greater motor activity across tasks, and both groups' activity was greater during EF tasks relative to control tasks. Lastly, VS-WM performance, relative to self-control performance, accounted for significantly more variance in activity across both VS-WM and self-control tasks. Collectively, findings suggest that ADHD-related hyperactivity is positively related to increased cognitive demands and appears to be better explained by deficient VS-WM rather than insufficient self-control. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. 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…

  5. INTERACTIONS BETWEEN WORKING MEMORY AND CREATIVITY: A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taís Crema Remoli

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Creativity and working memory are academic and professional success markers. Paradoxically, correlational studies do not always find associations between these constructs; some studies show positive associations between them and others show negative associations. Probably, the contradictory findings arise from different parameters, because of that it is important to identify them in order to have a more coherent understanding of this relationship. Thus, this systematic literature review aimed to answer the questions: “What is the relationship between working memory and creativity? Do update and serial recall mnemonic processes also interfere in the production of convergent or divergent thinking?” For this purpose, a survey of specific descriptors generated 384 articles found in Scopus, Web of Science and Pubmed databases, from which fifteen studies were selected. Despite the methodological variability between the selected studies, the results found suggest associations between working memory and creativity, which are explained by the attentional, inhibitory, analytical and motivational processes involved. A systematic review of these studies concluded that the characteristics of experimental tasks to study creativity and working memory used can influence the results of this association. It is also possible to infer that working memory overload can impair creative performance.

  6. Working Memory Capacity and Fluid Intelligence: Maintenance and Disengagement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shipstead, Zach; Harrison, Tyler L; Engle, Randall W

    2016-11-01

    Working memory capacity and fluid intelligence have been demonstrated to be strongly correlated traits. Typically, high working memory capacity is believed to facilitate reasoning through accurate maintenance of relevant information. In this article, we present a proposal reframing this issue, such that tests of working memory capacity and fluid intelligence are seen as measuring complementary processes that facilitate complex cognition. Respectively, these are the ability to maintain access to critical information and the ability to disengage from or block outdated information. In the realm of problem solving, high working memory capacity allows a person to represent and maintain a problem accurately and stably, so that hypothesis testing can be conducted. However, as hypotheses are disproven or become untenable, disengaging from outdated problem solving attempts becomes important so that new hypotheses can be generated and tested. From this perspective, the strong correlation between working memory capacity and fluid intelligence is due not to one ability having a causal influence on the other but to separate attention-demanding mental functions that can be contrary to one another but are organized around top-down processing goals. © The Author(s) 2016.

  7. Human temporal cortical single neuron activity during working memory maintenance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamora, Leona; Corina, David; Ojemann, George

    2016-06-01

    The Working Memory model of human memory, first introduced by Baddeley and Hitch (1974), has been one of the most influential psychological constructs in cognitive psychology and human neuroscience. However the neuronal correlates of core components of this model have yet to be fully elucidated. Here we present data from two studies where human temporal cortical single neuron activity was recorded during tasks differentially affecting the maintenance component of verbal working memory. In Study One we vary the presence or absence of distracting items for the entire period of memory storage. In Study Two we vary the duration of storage so that distractors filled all, or only one-third of the time the memory was stored. Extracellular single neuron recordings were obtained from 36 subjects undergoing awake temporal lobe resections for epilepsy, 25 in Study one, 11 in Study two. Recordings were obtained from a total of 166 lateral temporal cortex neurons during performance of one of these two tasks, 86 study one, 80 study two. Significant changes in activity with distractor manipulation were present in 74 of these neurons (45%), 38 Study one, 36 Study two. In 48 (65%) of those there was increased activity during the period when distracting items were absent, 26 Study One, 22 Study Two. The magnitude of this increase was greater for Study One, 47.6%, than Study Two, 8.1%, paralleling the reduction in memory errors in the absence of distracters, for Study One of 70.3%, Study Two 26.3% These findings establish that human lateral temporal cortex is part of the neural system for working memory, with activity during maintenance of that memory that parallels performance, suggesting it represents active rehearsal. In 31 of these neurons (65%) this activity was an extension of that during working memory encoding that differed significantly from the neural processes recorded during overt and silent language tasks without a recent memory component, 17 Study one, 14 Study two

  8. 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...

  9. Glucocorticoids in the prefrontal cortex enhance memory consolidation and impair working memory by a common neural mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barsegyan, Areg; Mackenzie, Scott M.; Kurose, Brian D.; McGaugh, James L.; Roozendaal, Benno

    2010-01-01

    It is well established that acute administration of adrenocortical hormones enhances the consolidation of memories of emotional experiences and, concurrently, impairs working memory. These different glucocorticoid effects on these two memory functions have generally been considered to be independently regulated processes. Here we report that a glucocorticoid receptor agonist administered into the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of male Sprague-Dawley rats both enhances memory consolidation and impairs working memory. Both memory effects are mediated by activation of a membrane-bound steroid receptor and depend on noradrenergic activity within the mPFC to increase levels of cAMP-dependent protein kinase. These findings provide direct evidence that glucocorticoid effects on both memory consolidation and working memory share a common neural influence within the mPFC. PMID:20810923

  10. Influence of Response Prepotency Strength, General Working Memory Resources, and Specific Working Memory Load on the Ability to Inhibit Predominant Responses: A Comparison of Young and Elderly Participants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grandjean, Julien; Collette, Fabienne

    2011-01-01

    One conception of inhibitory functioning suggests that the ability to successfully inhibit a predominant response depends mainly on the strength of that response, the general functioning of working memory processes, and the working memory demand of the task (Roberts, Hager, & Heron, 1994). The proposal that inhibition and functional working memory…

  11. 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…

  12. Working memory and reference memory tests of spatial navigation in mice (Mus musculus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sang Ah; Tucci, Valter; Sovrano, Valeria Anna; Vallortigara, Giorgio

    2015-05-01

    Researchers in spatial cognition have debated for decades the specificity of the mechanisms through which spatial information is processed and stored. Interestingly, although rodents are the preferred animal model for studying spatial navigation, the behavioral methods traditionally used to assess spatial memory do not effectively test the predictions of specificity in their representation. To address such issues, the present study tested the ability of mice to use boundary geometry and features to remember a goal location across 2 types of tasks--a working memory task with a changing goal location, and a reference memory task with 1 rewarded goal location. We show for the first time that mice, like other animals, can successfully encode boundary geometry in a working memory spatial mapping task, just as they do in a reference memory task. Their use of a nongeometric featural cue (striped pattern), in contrast, was more limited in the working memory task, although it quickly improved in the reference memory task. We discuss the implications of these findings for future research on the neural and genetic underpinnings of spatial representations. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. 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

    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...... 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...

  14. Does learning to read shape verbal working memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demoulin, Catherine; Kolinsky, Régine

    2016-06-01

    Many experimental studies have investigated the relationship between the acquisition of reading and working memory in a unidirectional way, attempting to determine to what extent individual differences in working memory can predict reading achievement. In contrast, very little attention has been dedicated to the converse possibility that learning to read shapes the development of verbal memory processes. In this paper, we present available evidence that advocates a more prominent role for reading acquisition on verbal working memory and then discuss the potential mechanisms of such literacy effects. First, the early decoding activities might bolster the development of subvocal rehearsal, which, in turn, would enhance serial order performance in immediate memory tasks. In addition, learning to read and write in an alphabetical system allows the emergence of phonemic awareness and finely tuned phonological representations, as well as of orthographic representations. This could improve the quality, strength, and precision of lexical representations, and hence offer better support for the temporary encoding of memory items and/or for their retrieval.

  15. 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.

  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. Influence of estradiol on functional brain organization for working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph, Jane E; Swearingen, Joshua E; Corbly, Christine R; Curry, Thomas E; Kelly, Thomas H

    2012-02-01

    Working memory is a cognitive function that is affected by aging and disease. To better understand the neural substrates for working memory, the present study examined the influence of estradiol on working memory using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Pre-menopausal women were tested on a verbal n-back task during the early (EF) and late follicular (LF) phases of the menstrual cycle. Although brain activation patterns were similar across the two phases, the most striking pattern that emerged was that estradiol had different associations with the two hemispheres. Increased activation in left frontal circuitry in the LF phase was associated with increased estradiol levels and decrements in working memory performance. In contrast, increased activation in right hemisphere regions in the LF phase was associated with improved task performance. The present study showed that better performance in the LF than the EF phase was associated with a pattern of reduced recruitment of the left-hemisphere and increased recruitment of the right-hemisphere in the LF compared to EF phase. We speculate that estradiol interferes with left-hemisphere working-memory processing in the LF phase, but that recruitment of the right hemisphere can compensate for left-hemisphere interference. This may be related to the proposal that estradiol can reduce cerebral asymmetries by modulating transcallosal communication (Hausmann, 2005). Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. 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.

  19. Working memory failures in children with arithmetical difficulties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passolunghi, Maria Chiara; Cornoldi, Cesare

    2008-09-01

    A large body of literature has examined the relationship between working memory and arithmetic achievement, but results are still ambiguous. To examine this relationship, we compared the performance of third and fifth graders with arithmetic difficulties (AD) and controls of the same age, grade, and verbal intelligence on a battery of working memory tasks, differentiating between different aspects of working memory. Children with AD scored significantly lower on active working memory tasks requiring manipulation of the to-be-recalled information (Listening Completion task, Corsi Span Backwards, Digit Backwards), but not in passive working memory tasks, requiring the recall of information in the same format in which it had been presented (Digit, Word, and Corsi Forwards Span tasks), nor in tasks involving word processing (word articulation rate, forwards and backwards word spans). A regression analysis showed that the best predictors of differences between AD children and the control group were the Corsi Span Backwards, the Listening Completion task, and the rate of articulation of pseudowords. The analysis of strategies used by children in mental calculation revealed the greater tendency of children with AD to rely on more primitive strategies: finger use never appeared as the most frequent strategy in skilled children, whereas it was the most used strategy in children with AD. Verbal and visual strategies appeared associated with successful performance in third graders, but in fifth grade, the most successful strategy was verbalization.

  20. Grammatical sensitivity and working memory in children with language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marton, Klara; Campanelli, Luca; Farkas, Lajos

    2011-12-01

    Children with primary language impairment (LI) show a deficit in processing different grammatical structures, verb inflections, and syntactically complex sentences among other things (Clahsen-Hansen 1997; Leonard et al. 1997). Cross-linguistic research has shown that the pattern of performance is language-specific. We examined grammatical sensitivity to word order and agreement violations in 50 Hungarian-speaking children with and without LI. The findings suggest a strong association between sensitivity to grammatical violations and working memory capacity. Variations in working memory performance predicted grammatical sensitivity. Hungarian participants with LI exhibited a weakness in detecting both agreement and word order violations.

  1. 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 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 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.

  2. Making working memory work: a computational model of learning in the prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Reilly, Randall C; Frank, Michael J

    2006-02-01

    The prefrontal cortex has long been thought to subserve both working memory (the holding of information online for processing) and executive functions (deciding how to manipulate working memory and perform processing). Although many computational models of working memory have been developed, the mechanistic basis of executive function remains elusive, often amounting to a homunculus. This article presents an attempt to deconstruct this homunculus through powerful learning mechanisms that allow a computational model of the prefrontal cortex to control both itself and other brain areas in a strategic, task-appropriate manner. These learning mechanisms are based on subcortical structures in the midbrain, basal ganglia, and amygdala, which together form an actor-critic architecture. The critic system learns which prefrontal representations are task relevant and trains the actor, which in turn provides a dynamic gating mechanism for controlling working memory updating. Computationally, the learning mechanism is designed to simultaneously solve the temporal and structural credit assignment problems. The model's performance compares favorably with standard backpropagation-based temporal learning mechanisms on the challenging 1-2-AX working memory task and other benchmark working memory tasks.

  3. 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

  4. Parallel effects of memory set activation and searchon timing and working memory capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard eSchweickert

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Accurately estimating a time interval is required in everyday activities such as driving or cooking. Estimating time is relatively easy, provided a person attends to it. But a brief shift of attention to another task usually interferes with timing. Most processes carried out concurrently with timing interfere with it. Curiously, some do not. Literature on a few processes suggests a general proposition, the Timing and Complex-Span Hypothesis: A process interferes with concurrent timing if and only if process performance is related to complex span. Complex-span is the number of items correctly recalled in order, when each item presented for study is followed by a brief activity. Literature on task switching, visual search, memory search, word generation and mental time travel supports the hypothesis. Previous work found that another process, activation of a memory set in long term memory, is not related to complex-span. If the Timing and Complex-Span Hypothesis is true, activation should not interfere with concurrent timing in dual-task conditions. We tested such activation in single-task memory search task conditions and in dual-task conditions where memory search was executed with concurrent timing. In Experiment 1, activating a memory set increased reaction time, with no significant effect on time production. In Experiment 2, set size and memory set activation were manipulated. Activation and set size had a puzzling interaction for time productions, perhaps due to difficult conditions, leading us to use a related but easier task in Experiment 3. In Experiment 3 increasing set size lengthened time production, but memory activation had no significant effect. Results here and in previous literature on the whole support the Timing and Complex-Span Hypotheses. Results also support a sequential organization of activation and search of memory. This organization predicts activation and set size have additive effects on reaction time and multiplicative

  5. The Role of Working Memory in Metaphor Production and Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiappe, Dan L.; Chiappe, Penny

    2007-01-01

    The following tested Kintsch's [Kintsch, W. (2000). "Metaphor comprehension: a computational theory." "Psychonomic Bulletin & Review," 7, 257-266 and Kintsch, W. (2001). "Predication." "Cognitive Science," 25, 173-202] Predication Model, which predicts that working memory capacity is an important factor in metaphor processing. In support of his…

  6. Emergent Bilingualism and Working Memory Development in School Aged Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Laura Birke; Macizo, Pedro; Duñabeitia, Jon Andoni; Saldaña, David; Carreiras, Manuel; Fuentes, Luis J.; Bajo, M. Teresa

    2016-01-01

    The present research explores working memory (WM) development in monolingual as well as emergent bilingual children immersed in an L2 at school. Evidence from recent years suggests that bilingualism may boost domain-general executive control, but impair nonexecutive linguistic processing. Both are relevant for verbal WM, but different paradigms…

  7. Interactions between working memory, attention and eye movements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Theeuwes, J.; Belopolsky, A.V.; Olivers, C.N.L.

    2009-01-01

    This paper reviews the recent findings on working memory, attention and eye movements. We discuss the research that shows that many phenomena related to visual attention taking place when selecting relevant information from the environment are similar to processes needed to keep information active

  8. Brain connectivity during verbal working memory in children and adolescents

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    G.E. van den Bosch (Gerbrich); H.E. Marroun (Hanan); M. Schmidt (Marcus); D. Tibboel (Dick); D.S. Manoach (Dara); V.D. Calhoun (Vince); T.J.H. White (Tonya)

    2014-01-01

    textabstractWorking memory (WkM) is a fundamental cognitive process that serves as a building block for higher order cognitive functions. While studies have shown that children and adolescents utilize similar brain regions during verbal WkM, there have been few studies that evaluate the

  9. Dissociative style and individual differences in verbal working memory span.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Ruiter, M.B.; Phaf, R.H.; Elzinga, B.M.; van Dyck, R.

    2004-01-01

    Dissociative style is mostly studied as a risk factor for dissociative pathology, but it may also reflect a fundamental characteristic of healthy information processing. Due to the close link between attention and working memory and the previous finding of enhanced attentional abilities with a high

  10. Binding of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Features in Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecker, Ullrich K. H.; Maybery, Murray; Zimmer, Hubert D.

    2013-01-01

    There is ongoing debate concerning the mechanisms of feature binding in working memory. In particular, there is controversy regarding the extent to which these binding processes are automatic. The present article demonstrates that binding mechanisms differ depending on whether the to-be-integrated features are perceived as forming a coherent…

  11. Spatial Working Memory Is Necessary for Actions to Guide Thought

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Laura E.

    2013-01-01

    Directed actions can play a causal role in cognition, shaping thought processes. What drives this cross-talk between action and thought? I investigated the hypothesis that representations in spatial working memory mediate interactions between directed actions and problem solving. Participants attempted to solve an insight problem while…

  12. The Endurance of Children's Working Memory: A Recall Time Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Towse, John N.; Hitch, Graham J.; Hamilton, Z.; Pirrie, Sarah

    2008-01-01

    We analyze the timing of recall as a source of information about children's performance in complex working memory tasks. A group of 8-year-olds performed a traditional operation span task in which sequence length increased across trials and an operation period task in which processing requirements were extended across trials of constant sequence…

  13. [GLIATILIN CORRECTION OF WORKING AND REFERENCE SPATIAL MEMORY IMPAIRMENT IN AGED RATS].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyurenkov, I N; Volotova, E V; Kurkin, D V

    2015-01-01

    This work was aimed at evaluating the influence of gliatilin administration on the spatial memory in aged rats. Cognitive function and spatial memory in animals was evaluated using radial (8-beam) maze test. Errors of working spatial memory and reference memory were used as indicators of impaired cognitive function. It was found that aged (24-month) rats compared with younger (6-months) age group exhibited cognitive impairment, as manifested by deterioration of short- and long-term memory processes. Course administration of gliatilin in rats of the older age group at a dose of 100 mg/kg resulted in significant improvement of the working and reference spatial memory in aged rats.

  14. 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

    Musical competence may confer cognitive advantages that extend beyond processing of familiar musical sounds. Behavioural evidence indicates a general enhancement of both working memory and attention in musicians. It is possible that musicians, due to their training, are better able to maintain...... 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...... enhanced cognition. All participants easily distinguished the stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that musicians nonetheless would perform better, and that differential brain activity would mainly be present in cortical areas involved in cognitive control such as the lateral prefrontal cortex. The musicians...

  15. Interaction of Working Memory, Compressor Speed and Background Noise Characteristics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ohlenforst, Barbara; MacDonald, Ewen; Souza, Pamela

    Previous studies have shown that individuals with poor working memory perform worse in speech recognition tests when fast compression release time is applied. However, it is not clear why this effect occurs only when modulations are present in the background noise. This study explored...... the relationship between working memory capacity, compression release time and characteristics of the background noise. This relationship is important to understand because the majority of everyday listening situations involve modulated noise. The investigation was carried out by testing two groups of older adults...... with similar degrees of mild-­‐to-­‐moderate sensorineural loss but different working memory abilities. The two groups were tested in their ability to understand a speech signal presented within a modulated background noise, processed with slow and fast compression. The extent of background noise modulation...

  16. Working memory and image guided surgical simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedman, Leif; Klingberg, Torkel; Kjellin, Ann; Wredmark, Torsten; Enochsson, Lars; Felländer-Tsai, Li

    2006-01-01

    We report on a study that investigates the relationship between visual working memory and verbal working memory and a performance measure in endoscopic instrument navigation in MIST and GI Mentor II (a simulator for gastroendoscopy). Integrated cognitive neuroscience in state-of-the-art simulator training curriculum will take safety science in health care one step ahead. Current simulator validation focuses on how to train. In the light of recent research it is now prime time to ask why in search of mechanisms rather than to repeatedly show that training has effect. This will help tailor training to maximize individual output in procedures that require a high level of dexterity. WM training is a unique learning aid in simulator training and should be used alongside clinical practice in order to improve the quality of complex clinical intervention in the field of image guided surgical simulation.

  17. Two visual working memory representations simultaneously control attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yanan; Du, Feng

    2017-07-21

    It has been proposed that only one visual working memory (VWM) representation can be activated to influence perception directly, whereas other VWM representations are accessory items which have little influence on visual selection. The sole active VWM representation might reflect a fundamental bottleneck in the information processing of human beings. However, the present study showed that each of two VWM representations can capture attention and interfere with concurrent visual search. In addition, each of two VWM representations can interfere with concurrent visual search as much as can a single cued VWM representation. Moreover, when two memory-matching distractors appear in visual search, two VWM representations produce a larger memory-driven capture effect than a single memory-matching distractor. Thus, two VWM representations can simultaneously control attention.

  18. 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.

  19. Role of attentional tags in working memory-driven attentional capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuo, Chun-Yu; Chao, Hsuan-Fu

    2014-08-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that the contents of working memory capture attention when performing a visual search task. However, it remains an intriguing and unresolved question whether all kinds of items stored in working memory capture attention. The present study investigated this issue by manipulating the attentional tags (target or distractor) associated with information maintained in working memory. The results showed that working memory-driven attentional capture is a flexible process, and that attentional tags associated with items stored in working memory do modulate attentional capture. When items were tagged as a target, they automatically captured attention; however, when items were tagged as a distractor, attentional capture was reduced.

  20. Working memory : Development, disorders and training

    OpenAIRE

    Westerberg, Helena

    2004-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is the ability to keep information online during a short period of time. Brain regions underlying WM functioning are found in the frontal and parietal cortices. It is largely unknown to what extent the neural substrates underlying WM are susceptible to training induced change. Here we investigate the development of WM capacity, if improvement by training is possible and explore the neuronal correlates for training induced change. In Study I we used fun...

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

    OpenAIRE

    Lum, Jarrad A. G.; Michael T Ullman; 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 ...

  2. Exploring the effect of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene on executive function, working memory, and processing speed during the early recovery period following traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padgett, Christine R; Summers, Mathew J; Vickers, James C; McCormack, Graeme H; Skilbeck, Clive E

    2016-01-01

    There is evidence that the e4 allele of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene is detrimental to cognitive function, but results from traumatic brain injury (TBI) populations are mixed. A possible explanation is that APOEe2 carriers have routinely been incorporated into APOEe4 and non-e4 groups, despite APOEe2 being proposed to have an ameliorative effect. Our primary aim was to investigate the influence of APOEe4 on cognitive impairment during early recovery following TBI, excluding the potential confound of APOEe2 possession. A secondary objective was to explore whether APOEe4 displays more pronounced effects in moderate to severe TBI and to consider the potential postinjury protective influence of the APOEe2 allele. Participants who recently sustained a TBI (posttraumatic amnesia > 5 minutes) were assessed on measures of information processing speed, executive function, and working memory upon remission of posttraumatic amnesia. APOE genotype was determined by buccal saliva DNA extraction (APOEe4 n = 37, APOEe3 n = 92, APOEe2 n = 13). Stepwise multiple regressions were performed to compare APOEe4 carriers to APOEe3 homozygotes, with injury severity, age, and estimated premorbid IQ included in the first step. This model was found to significantly predict performance on all tasks, accounting for 17.3-24.3% of the variance. When APOEe4 status was added for the second step, there were no significant changes on any tasks (additional variance recovery period following TBI, regardless of injury severity. However, a more nuanced and long-term exploration of the effect of APOE genotype in the TBI population is warranted.

  3. Selection of objects and tasks in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Risse, Sarah; Oberauer, Klaus

    2010-04-01

    When people hold several objects (such as digits or words) in working memory and select one for processing, switching to a new object takes longer than selecting the same object as that on the preceding processing step. Similarly, selecting a new task incurs task- switching costs. This work investigates the selection of objects and of tasks in working memory using a combination of object-switching and task-switching paradigms. Participants used spatial cues to select one digit held in working memory and colour cues to select one task (addition or subtraction) to apply to it. Across four experiments the mapping between objects and their cues and the mapping between tasks and their cues were varied orthogonally. When mappings varied from trial to trial for both objects and tasks, switch costs for objects and tasks were additive, as predicted by sequential selection or resource sharing. When at least one mapping was constant across trials, allowing learning of long-term associations, switch costs were underadditive, as predicted by partially parallel selection. The number of objects in working memory affected object-switch costs but not task-switch costs, counter to the notion of a general resource of executive attention.

  4. Time and Cognitive Load in Working Memory

    OpenAIRE

    Barrouillet, Pierre Noël; Bernardin, Sophie; Portrat, Sophie; Vergauwe, Evie; Camos, Valérie

    2007-01-01

    International audience; According to the time-based resource-sharing model (P. Barrouillet, S. Bernardin, & V. Camos, 2004), the cognitive load a given task involves is a function of the proportion of time during which it captures attention, thus impeding other attention-demanding processes. Accordingly, the present study demonstrates that the disruptive effect on concurrent maintenance of memory retrievals and response selections increases with their duration. Moreover, the effect on recall ...

  5. Neural suppression of irrelevant information underlies optimal working memory performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanto, Theodore P; Gazzaley, Adam

    2009-03-11

    Our ability to focus attention on task-relevant information and ignore distractions is reflected by differential enhancement and suppression of neural activity in sensory cortex (i.e., top-down modulation). Such selective, goal-directed modulation of activity may be intimately related to memory, such that the focus of attention biases the likelihood of successfully maintaining relevant information by limiting interference from irrelevant stimuli. Despite recent studies elucidating the mechanistic overlap between attention and memory, the relationship between top-down modulation of visual processing during working memory (WM) encoding, and subsequent recognition performance has not yet been established. Here, we provide neurophysiological evidence in healthy, young adults that top-down modulation of early visual processing (memory, motion direction and color. Moreover, attention to irrelevant stimuli was reflected neurally during the WM maintenance period as an increased memory load. These results suggest that neural enhancement of relevant information is not the primary determinant of high-level performance, but rather optimal WM performance is dependent on effectively filtering irrelevant information through neural suppression to prevent overloading a limited memory capacity.

  6. Working Memory in the Classroom: An Inside Look at the Central Executive.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, Lauren A

    2016-01-01

    This article provides a review of working memory and its application to educational settings. A discussion of the varying definitions of working memory is presented. Special attention is given to the various multidisciplinary professionals who work with students with working memory deficits, and their unique understanding of the construct. Definitions and theories of working memory are briefly summarized and provide the foundation for understanding practical applications of working memory to assessment and intervention. Although definitions and models of working memory abound, there is limited consensus regarding universally accepted definitions and models. Current research indicates that developing new models of working memory may be an appropriate paradigm shift at this time. The integration of individual practitioner's knowledge regarding academic achievement, working memory and processing speed could provide a foundation for the future development of new working memory models. Future directions for research should aim to explain how tasks and behaviors are supported by the substrates of the cortico-striatal and the cerebro-cerebellar systems. Translation of neurobiological information into educational contexts will be helpful to inform all practitioners' knowledge of working memory constructs. It will also allow for universally accepted definitions and models of working memory to arise and facilitate more effective collaboration between disciplines working in educational setting.

  7. Reward acts on the pFC to enhance distractor resistance of working memory representations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fallon, S.J.; Cools, R.

    2014-01-01

    Working memory and reward processing are often thought to be separate, unrelated processes. However, most daily activities involve integrating these two types of information, and the two processes rarely, if ever, occur in isolation. Here, we show that working memory and reward interact in a

  8. Longitudinal tDCS: Consistency across Working Memory Training Studies

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Marian E. Berryhill

    2017-01-01

    ...), have targeted working memory in particular. Despite controversy surrounding outcomes of single-session studies, a growing field of working memory training studies incorporate multiple sessions of tDCS...

  9. Controlling attention to nociceptive stimuli with working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valéry Legrain

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Because pain often signals the occurrence of potential tissue damage, a nociceptive stimulus has the capacity to involuntarily capture attention and take priority over other sensory inputs. Whether distraction by nociception actually occurs may depend upon the cognitive characteristics of the ongoing activities. The present study tested the role of working memory in controlling the attentional capture by nociception. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Participants performed visual discrimination and matching tasks in which visual targets were shortly preceded by a tactile distracter. The two tasks were chosen because of the different effects the involvement of working memory produces on performance, in order to dissociate the specific role of working memory in the control of attention from the effect of general resource demands. Occasionally (i.e. 17% of the trials, tactile distracters were replaced by a novel nociceptive stimulus in order to distract participants from the visual tasks. Indeed, in the control conditions (no working memory, reaction times to visual targets were increased when the target was preceded by a novel nociceptive distracter as compared to the target preceded by a frequent tactile distracter, suggesting attentional capture by the novel nociceptive stimulus. However, when the task required an active rehearsal of the visual target in working memory, the novel nociceptive stimulus no longer induced a lengthening of reaction times to visual targets, indicating a reduction of the distraction produced by the novel nociceptive stimulus. This effect was independent of the overall task demands. CONCLUSION AND SIGNIFICANCE: Loading working memory with pain-unrelated information may reduce the ability of nociceptive input to involuntarily capture attention, and shields cognitive processing from nociceptive distraction. An efficient control of attention over pain is best guaranteed by the ability to maintain active goal

  10. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Johanne Pallesen

    Full Text Available Musical competence may confer cognitive advantages that extend beyond processing of familiar musical sounds. Behavioural evidence indicates a general enhancement of both working memory and attention in musicians. It is possible that musicians, due to their training, are better able to maintain 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 enhanced cognition. All participants easily distinguished the stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that musicians nonetheless would perform better, and that differential brain activity would mainly be present in cortical areas involved in cognitive control such as the lateral prefrontal cortex. The musicians performed better as reflected in reaction times and error rates. Musicians also had larger BOLD responses than non-musicians in neuronal networks that sustain attention and cognitive control, including regions of the lateral prefrontal cortex, lateral parietal cortex, insula, and putamen in the right 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 be a consequence of focused musical training.

  11. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallesen, Karen Johanne; Brattico, Elvira; Bailey, Christopher J; Korvenoja, Antti; Koivisto, Juha; Gjedde, Albert; Carlson, Synnöve

    2010-06-15

    Musical competence may confer cognitive advantages that extend beyond processing of familiar musical sounds. Behavioural evidence indicates a general enhancement of both working memory and attention in musicians. It is possible that musicians, due to their training, are better able to maintain 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 enhanced cognition. All participants easily distinguished the stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that musicians nonetheless would perform better, and that differential brain activity would mainly be present in cortical areas involved in cognitive control such as the lateral prefrontal cortex. The musicians performed better as reflected in reaction times and error rates. Musicians also had larger BOLD responses than non-musicians in neuronal networks that sustain attention and cognitive control, including regions of the lateral prefrontal cortex, lateral parietal cortex, insula, and putamen in the right 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 be a consequence of focused musical training.

  12. 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.

  13. An electrophysiological signature for proactive interference resolution in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Yingchun; Xiao, Zhuangwei; Song, Yan; Fan, Silu; Wu, Renhua; Zhang, John X

    2008-08-01

    We used event-related potentials (ERPs) to study the temporal dynamics of proactive interference in working memory. Participants performed a Sternberg item-recognition task to determine whether a probe was in a target memory set. Familiar negative probes were found to be more difficult to reject than less familiar ones. A fronto-central N2 component peaking around 300 ms post-probe-onset differentiated among target probes, familiar and less familiar non-target probes. The study identifies N2 as the ERP signature for proactive interference resolution. It also indicates that the resolution process occurs in the same time window as target/non-target discrimination and provides the first piece of electrophysiological evidence supporting a recent interference resolution model based on localization data [Jonides, J., Nee, D.E., 2006. Brain mechanisms of proactive interference in working memory. Neuroscience 139, 181-193].

  14. Acute stress and working memory in older people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulopulos, Matias M; Hidalgo, Vanesa; Almela, Mercedes; Puig-Perez, Sara; Villada, Carolina; Salvador, Alicia

    2015-01-01

    Several studies have shown that acute stress affects working memory (WM) in young adults, but the effect in older people is understudied. As observed in other types of memory, older people may be less sensitive to acute effects of stress on WM. We performed two independent studies with healthy older men and women (from 55 to 77 years old) to investigate the effects of acute stress (Trier Social Stress Test; TSST) and cortisol on WM. In study 1 (n = 63), after the TSST women (but not men) improved their performance on Digit Span Forward (a measure of the memory span component of WM) but not on Digit Span Backward (a measure of both memory span and the executive component of WM). Furthermore, in women, cortisol levels at the moment of memory testing showed a positive association with the memory span component of WM before and after the TSST, and with the executive component of WM only before the stress task. In study 2 (n = 76), although participants showed a cortisol and salivary alpha-amylase (sAA) response to the TSST, stress did not affect performance on Letter-Number Sequencing (LNS; a task that places a high demand on the executive component of WM). Cortisol and sAA were not associated with WM. The results indicate that circulating cortisol levels at the moment of memory testing, and not the stress response, affect memory span in older women, and that stress and the increase in cortisol levels after stress do not affect the executive component of WM in older men and women. This study provides further evidence that older people may be less sensitive to stress and stress-induced cortisol response effects on memory processes.

  15. Reasoning and Memory: People Make Varied Use of the Information Available in Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardman, Kyle O.; Cowan, Nelson

    2016-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is used for storing information in a highly accessible state so that other mental processes, such as reasoning, can use that information. Some WM tasks require that participants not only store information, but also reason about that information to perform optimally on the task. In this study, we used visual WM tasks that had…

  16. What can research on schizophrenia tell us about the cognitive neuroscience of working memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barch, D M

    2006-04-28

    Work with individuals with lesions to specific brain regions has long been used to test or even generate theories regarding the neural systems that support specific cognitive processes. Work with individuals who have neuropsychiatric disorders that also involve neurobiological disturbances may be able to play a similar role in theory testing and building. For example, schizophrenia is a psychiatric disorder thought to involve a range of neurobiological disturbances. Further, individuals with schizophrenia are known to suffer from deficits in working memory, meaning that examining the work on the neurobiology of working memory deficits in schizophrenia may help to further our understanding of the cognitive neuroscience of working memory. This article discusses the pros and cons of extrapolating from work in schizophrenia to models of healthy working memory function, and reviews the literature on working memory function in schizophrenia in relationship to existing human and non-human primate models of the cognitive neuroscience of working memory.

  17. Brain Connectivity Variation Topography Associated with Working Memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaofei Ma

    Full Text Available Brain connectivity analysis plays an essential role in the research of working memory that involves complex coordination of various brain regions. In this research, we present a comprehensive view of trans-states brain connectivity variation based on continuous scalp EEG, extending beyond traditional stimuli-lock averaging or restriction to short time scales of hundreds of milliseconds after stimulus onset. The scalp EEG was collected under three conditions: quiet, memory, and control. The only difference between the memory and control conditions was that in the memory condition, subjects made an effort to retain information. We started our investigation with calibrations of Pearson correlation in EEG analysis and then derived two indices, link strength and node connectivity, to make comparisons between different states. Finally, we constructed and studied trans-state brain connectivity variation topography. Comparing memory and control states with quiet state, we found that the beta topography highlights links between T5/T6 and O1/O2, which represents the visual ventral stream, and the gamma topography conveys strengthening of inter-hemisphere links and weakening of intra-hemisphere frontal-posterior links, implying parallel inter-hemisphere coordination combined with sequential intra-hemisphere coordination when subjects are confronted with visual stimuli and a motor task. For comparison between memory and control states, we also found that the node connectivity of T6 stands out in gamma topography, which provides strong proof from scalp EEG for the information binding or relational processing function of the temporal lobe in memory formation. To our knowledge, this is the first time for any method to effectively capture brain connectivity variation associated with working memory from a relatively large scale both in time (from a second to a minute and in space (from the scalp. The method can track brain activity continuously with minimal

  18. Brain Connectivity Variation Topography Associated with Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Xiaofei; Huang, Xiaolin; Ge, Yun; Hu, Yueming; Chen, Wei; Liu, Aili; Liu, Hongxing; Chen, Ying; Li, Bin; Ning, Xinbao

    2016-01-01

    Brain connectivity analysis plays an essential role in the research of working memory that involves complex coordination of various brain regions. In this research, we present a comprehensive view of trans-states brain connectivity variation based on continuous scalp EEG, extending beyond traditional stimuli-lock averaging or restriction to short time scales of hundreds of milliseconds after stimulus onset. The scalp EEG was collected under three conditions: quiet, memory, and control. The only difference between the memory and control conditions was that in the memory condition, subjects made an effort to retain information. We started our investigation with calibrations of Pearson correlation in EEG analysis and then derived two indices, link strength and node connectivity, to make comparisons between different states. Finally, we constructed and studied trans-state brain connectivity variation topography. Comparing memory and control states with quiet state, we found that the beta topography highlights links between T5/T6 and O1/O2, which represents the visual ventral stream, and the gamma topography conveys strengthening of inter-hemisphere links and weakening of intra-hemisphere frontal-posterior links, implying parallel inter-hemisphere coordination combined with sequential intra-hemisphere coordination when subjects are confronted with visual stimuli and a motor task. For comparison between memory and control states, we also found that the node connectivity of T6 stands out in gamma topography, which provides strong proof from scalp EEG for the information binding or relational processing function of the temporal lobe in memory formation. To our knowledge, this is the first time for any method to effectively capture brain connectivity variation associated with working memory from a relatively large scale both in time (from a second to a minute) and in space (from the scalp). The method can track brain activity continuously with minimal manual interruptions

  19. Twisting tongues and memories: Explorations of the relationship between language production and verbal working memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acheson, Daniel J.; MacDonald, Maryellen C.

    2010-01-01

    Many accounts of working memory posit specialized storage mechanisms for the maintenance of serial order. We explore an alternative, that maintenance is achieved through temporary activation in the language production architecture. Four experiments examined the extent to which the phonological similarity effect can be explained as a sublexical speech error. Phonologically similar nonword stimuli were ordered to create tongue twister or control materials used in four tasks: reading aloud, immediate spoken recall, immediate typed recall, and serial recognition. Dependent measures from working memory (recall accuracy) and language production (speech errors) fields were used. Even though lists were identical except for item order, robust effects of tongue twisters were observed. Speech error analyses showed that errors were better described as phoneme rather than item ordering errors. The distribution of speech errors was comparable across all experiments and exhibited syllable-position effects, suggesting an important role for production processes. Implications for working memory and language production are discussed. PMID:21165150

  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. 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…

  2. 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…

  3. 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

  4. Spatial Working Memory Effects in Early Visual Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munneke, Jaap; Heslenfeld, Dirk J.; Theeuwes, Jan

    2010-01-01

    The present study investigated how spatial working memory recruits early visual cortex. Participants were required to maintain a location in working memory while changes in blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signals were measured during the retention interval in which no visual stimulation was present. We show working memory effects during the…

  5. 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…

  6. Past Experience Influences Object Representation in Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagar, B.M.; Dixon, M.J.

    2005-01-01

    The nature of object representation in working memory is vital to establishing the capacity of working memory, which in turn shapes the limits of visual cognition and awareness. Although current theories discuss whether representations in working memory are feature-based or object-based, no theory has considered the role of past experience.…

  7. 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…

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Dynamic trajectory of multiple single-unit activity during working memory task in rats

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Xiaofan; Yi, Hu; Bai, Wenwen; Tian, Xin

    2015-01-01

    Working memory plays an important role in complex cognitive tasks. A popular theoretical view is that transient properties of neuronal dynamics underlie cognitive processing. The question raised here as to how the transient dynamics evolve in working memory. To address this issue, we investigated the multiple single-unit activity dynamics in rat medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) during a Y-maze working memory task. The approach worked by reconstructing state space from delays of the original si...

  11. Working memory-driven attention improves spatial resolution: Support for perceptual enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Yi; Luo, Qianying; Cheng, Min

    2016-08-01

    Previous research has indicated that attention can be biased toward those stimuli matching the contents of working memory and thereby facilitates visual processing at the location of the memory-matching stimuli. However, whether this working memory-driven attentional modulation takes place on early perceptual processes remains unclear. Our present results showed that working memory-driven attention improved identification of a brief Landolt target presented alone in the visual field. Because the suprathreshold target appeared without any external noise added (i.e., no distractors or masks), the results suggest that working memory-driven attention enhances the target signal at early perceptual stages of visual processing. Furthermore, given that performance in the Landolt target identification task indexes spatial resolution, this attentional facilitation indicates that working memory-driven attention can boost early perceptual processing via enhancement of spatial resolution at the attended location.

  12. Neural Anatomy of Primary Visual Cortex Limits Visual Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergmann, Johanna; Genç, Erhan; Kohler, Axel; Singer, Wolf; Pearson, Joel

    2016-01-01

    Despite the immense processing power of the human brain, working memory storage is severely limited, and the neuroanatomical basis of these limitations has remained elusive. Here, we show that the stable storage limits of visual working memory for over 9 s are bound by the precise gray matter volume of primary visual cortex (V1), defined by fMRI retinotopic mapping. Individuals with a bigger V1 tended to have greater visual working memory storage. This relationship was present independently for both surface size and thickness of V1 but absent in V2, V3 and for non-visual working memory measures. Additional whole-brain analyses confirmed the specificity of the relationship to V1. Our findings indicate that the size of primary visual cortex plays a critical role in limiting what we can hold in mind, acting like a gatekeeper in constraining the richness of working mental function. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. Selective transfer of visual working memory training on Chinese character learning.

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    Opitz, Bertram; Schneiders, Julia A; Krick, Christoph M; Mecklinger, Axel

    2014-01-01

    Previous research has shown a systematic relationship between phonological working memory capacity and second language proficiency for alphabetic languages. However, little is known about the impact of working memory processes on second language learning in a non-alphabetic language such as Mandarin Chinese. Due to the greater complexity of the Chinese writing system we expect that visual working memory rather than phonological working memory exerts a unique influence on learning Chinese characters. This issue was explored in the present experiment by comparing visual working memory training with an active (auditory working memory training) control condition and a passive, no training control condition. Training induced modulations in language-related brain networks were additionally examined using functional magnetic resonance imaging in a pretest-training-posttest design. As revealed by pre- to posttest comparisons and analyses of individual differences in working memory training gains, visual working memory training led to positive transfer effects on visual Chinese vocabulary learning compared to both control conditions. In addition, we found sustained activation after visual working memory training in the (predominantly visual) left infero-temporal cortex that was associated with behavioral transfer. In the control conditions, activation either increased (active control condition) or decreased (passive control condition) without reliable behavioral transfer effects. This suggests that visual working memory training leads to more efficient processing and more refined responses in brain regions involved in visual processing. Furthermore, visual working memory training boosted additional activation in the precuneus, presumably reflecting mental image generation of the learned characters. We, therefore, suggest that the conjoint activity of the mid-fusiform gyrus and the precuneus after visual working memory training reflects an interaction of working memory and

  14. Visual working memory deterioration preceding relapse in psychosis.

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    Hui, C L M; Li, Y K; Li, A W Y; Lee, E H M; Chang, W C; Chan, S K W; Lam, S Y; Thornton, A E; Sham, P; Honer, W G; Chen, E Y H

    2016-08-01

    Relapse is distressingly common after the first episode of psychosis, yet it is poorly understood and difficult to predict. Investigating changes in cognitive function preceding relapse may provide new insights into the underlying mechanism of relapse in psychosis. We hypothesized that relapse in fully remitted first-episode psychosis patients was preceded by working memory deterioration. Visual memory and verbal working memory were monitored prospectively in a 1-year randomized controlled trial of remitted first-episode psychosis patients assigned to medication continuation (quetiapine 400 mg/day) or discontinuation (placebo). Relapse (recurrence of positive symptoms of psychosis), visual (Visual Patterns Test) and verbal (Letter-Number span test) working memory and stressful life events were assessed monthly. Remitted first-episode patients (n = 102) participated in the study. Relapsers (n = 53) and non-relapsers (n = 49) had similar baseline demographic and clinical profiles. Logistic regression analyses indicated relapse was associated with visual working memory deterioration 2 months before relapse [odds ratio (OR) 3.07, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.19-7.92, P = 0.02], more stressful life events 1 month before relapse (OR 2.11, 95% CI 1.20-3.72, P = 0.01) and medication discontinuation (OR 5.52, 95% CI 2.08-14.62, P = 0.001). Visual working memory deterioration beginning 2 months before relapse in remitted first-episode psychosis patients (not baseline predictor) may reflect early brain dysfunction that heralds a psychotic relapse. The deterioration was found to be unrelated to a worsening of psychotic symptoms preceding relapse. Testable predictors offer insight into the brain processes underlying relapse in psychosis.

  15. Direct access inter-process shared memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brightwell, Ronald B; Pedretti, Kevin; Hudson, Trammell B

    2013-10-22

    A technique for directly sharing physical memory between processes executing on processor cores is described. The technique includes loading a plurality of processes into the physical memory for execution on a corresponding plurality of processor cores sharing the physical memory. An address space is mapped to each of the processes by populating a first entry in a top level virtual address table for each of the processes. The address space of each of the processes is cross-mapped into each of the processes by populating one or more subsequent entries of the top level virtual address table with the first entry in the top level virtual address table from other processes.

  16. Vagus nerve stimulation improves working memory performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Lihua; Peräkylä, Jari; Holm, Katri; Haapasalo, Joonas; Lehtimäki, Kai; Ogawa, Keith H; Peltola, Jukka; Hartikainen, Kaisa M

    2017-12-01

    Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) is used for treating refractory epilepsy and major depression. While the impact of this treatment on seizures has been established, its impact on human cognition remains equivocal. The goal of this study is to elucidate the immediate effects of vagus nerve stimulation on attention, cognition, and emotional reactivity in patients with epilepsy. Twenty patients (12 male and 8 female; 45 ± 13 years old) treated with VNS due to refractory epilepsy participated in the study. Subjects performed a computer-based test of executive functions embedded with emotional distractors while their brain activity was recorded with electroencephalography. Subjects' cognitive performance, early visual event-related potential N1, and frontal alpha asymmetry were studied when cyclic vagus nerve stimulation was on and when it was off. We found that vagus nerve stimulation improved working memory performance as seen in reduced errors on a subtask that relied on working memory, odds ratio (OR) = 0.63 (95% confidence interval, CI [0.47, 0.85]) and increased N1 amplitude, F(1, 15) = 10.17, p = .006. In addition, vagus nerve stimulation resulted in longer reaction time, F(1, 16) = 8.23, p = .019, and greater frontal alpha asymmetry, F(1, 16) = 11.79, p = .003, in response to threat-related distractors. This is the first study to show immediate improvement in working memory performance in humans with clinically relevant vagus nerve stimulation. Furthermore, vagus nerve stimulation had immediate effects on emotional reactivity evidenced in behavior and brain physiology.

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

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    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.

  18. Caffeine enhances working memory for extraverts.

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    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.

  19. 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.

  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

    2013-01-01

    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

  1. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN WORKING MEMORY PERFORMANCE: «OVERLOAD» EFFECT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuri G. Pavlov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this research is to study the relationship betweenfrontal midline theta rhythm changes and individual differences in working memory performance.Methods. The methods involve behavioural testing on the basis of the program for a presentation of stimulus and registration of answers «PsyTask»; method of EEG (electroencephalography; a technique of measurement of efficiency of working memory; the comparative analysis. Software packages EEGLab for Matlab and Fieldtrip are applied while data processing.Results. After the behavioral test all subjects were separated into 2 groups according to their performance: with «highly productive» and «low productive» memory. Specially prepared author’s complete set of the tasks which complexity varied from average to ultrahigh level was offered to participants of experiment –students and employees of the Ural Federal University and Ural Legal Institute of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Working memory tasks included sets of verbal stimuli for memorizing in strict order without any mental manipulation and sets of similar stimuli for memorizing in alphabetical order (with manipulations. Measured characteristics of theta-rhythm of EEG during information deduction in memory were compared of two groups’ representatives. The obtained data has shown rather uniform and similar dynamics of decrease in quantity of right answers in process of increasing tasks’ complexity. However, changes of a thetarhythm in different groups had sharply expressed distinctions. «Highly productive» examinees have systematic expansion of a theta-rhythm in the central assignments with stabilisation on the most difficult tasks; «low productive» – while tasks performance of average complexity, a sharp falling of theta-rhythm activity is observed after achievement of its maximum activation.Scientific novelty. The working memory «overload» effect and its EEG correlates are demonstrated on a big sample of

  2. Evidence for the effect of depth on visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Jiehui; Li, Jiaofeng; Wang, Kaiyue; Liu, Shengxi; Lei, Quan

    2017-07-25

    Visual working memory (VWM) is a cognitive memory buffer for temporarily holding, processing, and manipulating visual information. Previous studies have demonstrated mixed results of the effect of depth perception on VWM, with some showing a beneficial effect while others not. In this study, we employed an adapted change detection paradigm to investigate the effects of two depth cues, binocular disparity and relative size. The memory array consisted of a set of pseudo-randomly positioned colored items, and the task was to judge whether the test item was changed compared to the memory item after a retention interval. We found that presenting the items in stereoscopic depth alone hardly affected VWM performance. When combining the two coherent depth cues, a significant larger VWM capacity of the perceptually closer-in-depth items was observed than that of the farther items, but the capacity for the two-depth-planes condition was not significantly different from that for the one-plane condition. Conflicting the two depth cues resulted in cancelling the beneficial effect of presenting items at a closer depth plane. The results indicate that depth perception could affect VWM, and the visual system may have an advantage in maintaining closer-in-depth objects in working memory.

  3. Reward associations impact both iconic and visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infanti, Elisa; Hickey, Clayton; Turatto, Massimo

    2015-02-01

    Reward plays a fundamental role in human behavior. A growing number of studies have shown that stimuli associated with reward become salient and attract attention. The aim of the present study was to extend these results into the investigation of iconic memory and visual working memory. In two experiments we asked participants to perform a visual-search task where different colors of the target stimuli were paired with high or low reward. We then tested whether the pre-established feature-reward association affected performance on a subsequent visual memory task, in which no reward was provided. In this test phase participants viewed arrays of 8 objects, one of which had unique color that could match the color associated with reward during the previous visual-search task. A probe appeared at varying intervals after stimulus offset to identify the to-be-reported item. Our results suggest that reward biases the encoding of visual information such that items characterized by a reward-associated feature interfere with mnemonic representations of other items in the test display. These results extend current knowledge regarding the influence of reward on early cognitive processes, suggesting that feature-reward associations automatically interact with the encoding and storage of visual information, both in iconic memory and visual working memory. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Adolescent social defeat decreases spatial working memory performance in adulthood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novick, Andrew M; Miiller, Leah C; Forster, Gina L; Watt, Michael J

    2013-10-17

    Adolescent social stress is associated with increased incidence of mental illnesses in adulthood that are characterized by deficits in cognitive focus and flexibility. Such enhanced vulnerability may be due to psychosocial stress-induced disruption of the developing mesocortical dopamine system, which plays a fundamental role in facilitating complex cognitive processes such as spatial working memory. Adolescent rats exposed to repeated social defeat as a model of social stress develop dopaminergic hypofunction in the medial prefrontal cortex as adults. To evaluate a direct link between adolescent social stress and later deficits in cognitive function, the present study tested the effects of adolescent social defeat on two separate tests of spatial working memory performance. Adult rats exposed to adolescent social defeat and their controls were trained on either the delayed win-shift task or the delayed alternating T-Maze task and then challenged with various delay periods. To evaluate potential differences in motivation for the food reward used in memory tasks, consumption and conditioned place preference for sweetened condensed milk were tested in a separate cohort of previously defeated rats and controls. Compared to controls, adult rats defeated in adolescence showed a delay-dependent deficit in spatial working memory performance, committing more errors at a 90 s and 5 min delay period on the T-maze and win-shift tasks, respectively. Observed memory deficits were likely independent of differences in reward motivation, as conditioned place preference for the palatable food used on both tasks was similar between the adolescent social defeat group and control. The results demonstrate that severe social stressors during adolescence can produce long term deficits in aspects of cognitive function. Given the dependence of spatial working memory on prefrontal dopamine, pharmacologically reversing dopaminergic deficiencies caused by adolescent social stress has the

  5. Working memory capacity predicts language comprehension in schizophrenic patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Condray, R; Steinhauer, S R; van Kammen, D P; Kasparek, A

    1996-05-01

    The association between language comprehension and working memory capacity was evaluated in 25 male DSM-III-R schizophrenic patients (14 inpatients; 11 outpatients), and in 11 male normal controls (no lifetime DSM-III-R disorder). Patients and controls did not differ significantly on age and education. Language comprehension was examined as a function of two types of processing demand: grammatical complexity (complex versus simple sentences) and presentation rate (accelerated versus conversational). Schizophrenic patients showed significantly reduced language comprehension and decreased working memory capacity for language, compared with controls. Patients showed general difficulty in comprehending accurately, rather than exhibiting problems with specific grammatical structures. Subject groups were highly accurate and did not differ in their ability to perceive the individual words in sentences presented at the accelerated rate (intelligibility). Presentation rate and grammatical complexity affected comprehension accuracy in all groups, however, with increases in rate and complexity producing decreases in understanding. Of most importance, theoretically, is the finding that working memory capacity predicted language comprehension accuracy in both schizophrenic patients and normal controls. Results suggest that language comprehension deficits in schizophrenic patients may involve a general dysfunction that is associated with working memory capacity for language.

  6. Making working memory work: a meta-analysis of executive-control and working memory training in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karbach, Julia; Verhaeghen, Paul

    2014-11-01

    This meta-analysis examined the effects of process-based executive-function and working memory training (49 articles, 61 independent samples) in older adults (> 60 years). The interventions resulted in significant effects on performance on the trained task and near-transfer tasks; significant results were obtained for the net pretest-to-posttest gain relative to active and passive control groups and for the net effect at posttest relative to active and passive control groups. Far-transfer effects were smaller than near-transfer effects but were significant for the net pretest-to-posttest gain relative to passive control groups and for the net gain at posttest relative to both active and passive control groups. We detected marginally significant differences in training-induced improvements between working memory and executive-function training, but no differences between the training-induced improvements observed in older adults and younger adults, between the benefits associated with adaptive and nonadaptive training, or between the effects in active and passive control conditions. Gains did not vary with total training time. © The Author(s) 2014.

  7. 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.

  8. Object Selection Costs in Visual Working Memory: A Diffusion Model Analysis of the Focus of Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sewell, David K.; Lilburn, Simon D.; Smith, Philip L.

    2016-01-01

    A central question in working memory research concerns the degree to which information in working memory is accessible to other cognitive processes (e.g., decision-making). Theories assuming that the focus of attention can only store a single object at a time require the focus to orient to a target representation before further processing can…

  9. Synergies between processing and memory in children's reading span.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Towse, John N; Hitch, Graham J; Horton, Neil; Harvey, Katarina

    2010-09-01

    Previous research has established the relevance of working memory for cognitive development. Yet the factors responsible for shaping performance in the complex span tasks used to assess working memory capacity are not fully understood. We report a study of reading span in 7- to 11-year-old children that addresses several contemporary theoretical issues. We demonstrate that both the timing and the accuracy of recall are affected by the presence or absence of a semantic connection between the processing requirement and the memoranda. Evidence that there can be synergies between processing and memory argues against the view that complex span simply measures the competition between these activities. We also demonstrate a consistent relationship between the rate of completing processing operations (sentence reading) and recall accuracy. At the same time, the shape and strength of this function varies with the task configuration. Taken together, these results demonstrate the potential for reconstructive influences to shape working memory performance among children.

  10. Working memory capacity and task goals modulate error-related ERPs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleman, James R; Watson, Jason M; Strayer, David L

    2017-03-15

    The present study investigated individual differences in information processing following errant behavior. Participants were initially classified as high or as low working memory capacity using the Operation Span Task. In a subsequent session, they then performed a high congruency version of the flanker task under both speed and accuracy stress. We recorded ERPs and behavioral measures of accuracy and response time in the flanker task with a primary focus on processing following an error. The error-related negativity was larger for the high working memory capacity group than for the low working memory capacity group. The positivity following an error (Pe) was modulated to a greater extent by speed-accuracy instruction for the high working memory capacity group than for the low working memory capacity group. These data help to explicate the neural bases of individual differences in working memory capacity and cognitive control. © 2017 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  11. Recognition Decisions from Visual Working Memory Are Mediated by Continuous Latent Strengths

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    Ricker, Timothy J.; Thiele, Jonathan E.; Swagman, April R.; Rouder, Jeffrey N.

    2017-01-01

    Making recognition decisions often requires us to reference the contents of working memory, the information available for ongoing cognitive processing. As such, understanding how recognition decisions are made when based on the contents of working memory is of critical importance. In this work we examine whether recognition decisions based on the…

  12. The role of visual and phonological representations in the processing of written words by readers with diagnosed dyslexia: evidence from a working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Paul; Kupfermann, Amirit

    2009-06-01

    The aim of the study was to elucidate the nature and efficiency of the strategies that readers with phonological dyslexia use for temporary retention of written words in Working Memory (WM). Data was gathered through a paradigm whereby participants had to identify serially presented written (target) words from within larger word pools according to their presentation order, with word pools containing code-specific distracter (CSD) words and non-code-specific distracter (NCSD) words. Analyses focused on three aspects of performance: (1) false recognition of target words; (2) correct recognition of target words; and (3) retention of word presentation order. Participants were readers with diagnosed phonological dyslexia (n = 20, mean grade level = 9.05 [0.89]) and a control group of regular readers (n = 25, mean grade level = 9.00 [0.76]). Results provide direct evidence that the dyslexic readers and the regular readers used essentially different memory coding strategies for the temporary retention of written words, with the former predominantly relying on a visual strategy and the latter on a phonological strategy. Findings further pinpointed a notably impoverished ability of the dyslexic readers to retain word presentation order. The implication of these findings is discussed in relation to theories predicting the acquisition and mastery of reading.

  13. Body image, visual working memory and visual mental imagery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darling, Stephen; Uytman, Clare; Allen, Richard J; Havelka, Jelena; Pearson, David G

    2015-01-01

    Body dissatisfaction (BD) is a highly prevalent feature amongst females in society, with the majority of individuals regarding themselves to be overweight compared to their personal ideal, and very few self-describing as underweight. To date, explanations of this dramatic pattern have centred on extrinsic social and media factors, or intrinsic factors connected to individuals' knowledge and belief structures regarding eating and body shape, with little research examining links between BD and basic cognitive mechanisms. This paper reports a correlational study in which visual and executive cognitive processes that could potentially impact on BD were assessed. Visual memory span and self-rated visual imagery were found to be predictive of BD, alongside a measure of inhibition derived from the Stroop task. In contrast, spatial memory and global precedence were not related to BD. Results are interpreted with reference to the influential multi-component model of working memory.

  14. Body image, visual working memory and visual mental imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen Darling

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Body dissatisfaction (BD is a highly prevalent feature amongst females in society, with the majority of individuals regarding themselves to be overweight compared to their personal ideal, and very few self-describing as underweight. To date, explanations of this dramatic pattern have centred on extrinsic social and media factors, or intrinsic factors connected to individuals’ knowledge and belief structures regarding eating and body shape, with little research examining links between BD and basic cognitive mechanisms. This paper reports a correlational study in which visual and executive cognitive processes that could potentially impact on BD were assessed. Visual memory span and self-rated visual imagery were found to be predictive of BD, alongside a measure of inhibition derived from the Stroop task. In contrast, spatial memory and global precedence were not related to BD. Results are interpreted with reference to the influential multi-component model of working memory.

  15. The role of working memory in the metaphor interference effect.

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    Pierce, Russell S; Maclaren, Rick; Chiappe, Dan L

    2010-06-01

    Participants took longer to judge that metaphors (e.g., an insult is a razor, memory is a warehouse) were literally false than to judge that scrambled sentences (e.g., an insult is a warehouse) were false. This result is the metaphor interference effect (MIE). It demonstrates that metaphor processing is automatic. In this experiment, we found that the magnitude of the MIE is predicted by working memory (WM) capacity, with higher WM yielding a smaller MIE. This suggests that although metaphor comprehension is automatic, the early processing of metaphors is controllable by executive mechanisms. We relate our results to Kintsch's (2000, 2001) predication model. Specifically, we suggest that mechanisms of WM influence metaphor processing by affecting the effectiveness of the construction-integration process that identifies common properties between topics and vehicles. WM also influences the speed with which meanings are identified as literal or figurative.

  16. Training Planning and Working Memory in Third Graders

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    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…

  17. Working memory binding and episodic memory formation in aging, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer's dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Geldorp, Bonnie; Heringa, Sophie M; van den Berg, Esther; Olde Rikkert, Marcel G M; Biessels, Geert Jan; Kessels, Roy P C

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that in both normal and pathological aging working memory (WM) performance deteriorates, especially when associations have to be maintained. However, most studies typically do not assess the relationship between WM and episodic memory formation. In the present study, we examined WM and episodic memory formation in normal aging and in patients with early Alzheimer's disease (mild cognitive impairment, MCI; and Alzheimer's dementia, AD). In the first study, 26 young adults (mean age 29.6 years) were compared to 18 middle-aged adults (mean age 52.2 years) and 25 older adults (mean age 72.8 years). We used an associative delayed-match-to-sample WM task, which requires participants to maintain two pairs of faces and houses presented on a computer screen for short (3 s) or long (6 s) maintenance intervals. After the WM task, an unexpected subsequent associative memory task was administered (two-alternative forced choice). In the second study, 27 patients with AD and 19 patients with MCI were compared to 25 older controls, using the same paradigm as that in Experiment 1. Older adults performed worse than both middle-aged and young adults. No effect of delay was observed in the healthy adults, and pairs that were processed during long maintenance intervals were not better remembered in the subsequent memory task. In the MCI and AD patients, longer maintenance intervals hampered the task performance. Also, both patient groups performed significantly worse than controls on the episodic memory task as well as the associative WM task. Aging and AD present with a decline in WM binding, a finding that extends similar results in episodic memory. Longer delays in the WM task did not affect episodic memory formation. We conclude that WM deficits are found when WM capacity is exceeded, which may occur during associative processing.

  18. Working memory differences in long-distance dependency resolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno eNicenboim

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available There is a wealth of evidence showing that increasing the distance between an argument and its head leads to more processing effort, namely, locality effects; these are usually associated with constraints in working memory (DLT: Gibson, 2000; activation-based model: Lewis and Vasishth, 2005. In SOV languages, however, the opposite effect has been found: antilocality (see discussion in Levy et al., 2013. Antilocality effects can be explained by the expectation-based approach as proposed by Levy (2008 or by the activation-based model of sentence processing as proposed by Lewis and Vasishth (2005.We report an eye-tracking and a self-paced reading study with sentences in Spanish together with measures of individual differences to examine the distinction between expectation- and memory-based accounts, and within memory-based accounts the further distinction between DLT and the activation-based model. The experiments show that (i antilocality effects as predicted by the expectation account appear only for high-capacity readers; (ii increasing dependency length by interposing material that modifies the head of the dependency (the verb produces stronger facilitation than increasing dependency length with material that does not modify the head; this is in agreement with the activation-based model but not with the expectation account; and (iii a possible outcome of memory load on low-capacity readers is the increase in regressive saccades (locality effects as predicted by memory-based accounts or, surprisingly, a speedup in the self-paced reading task; the latter consistent with good-enough parsing (Ferreira et al., 2002. In sum, the study suggests that individual differences in working memory capacity play a role in dependency resolution, and that some of the aspects of dependency resolution can be best explained with the activation-based model together with a prediction component.

  19. Working memory differences in long-distance dependency resolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicenboim, Bruno; Vasishth, Shravan; Gattei, Carolina; Sigman, Mariano; Kliegl, Reinhold

    2015-01-01

    There is a wealth of evidence showing that increasing the distance between an argument and its head leads to more processing effort, namely, locality effects; these are usually associated with constraints in working memory (DLT: Gibson, 2000; activation-based model: Lewis and Vasishth, 2005). In SOV languages, however, the opposite effect has been found: antilocality (see discussion in Levy et al., 2013). Antilocality effects can be explained by the expectation-based approach as proposed by Levy (2008) or by the activation-based model of sentence processing as proposed by Lewis and Vasishth (2005). We report an eye-tracking and a self-paced reading study with sentences in Spanish together with measures of individual differences to examine the distinction between expectation- and memory-based accounts, and within memory-based accounts the further distinction between DLT and the activation-based model. The experiments show that (i) antilocality effects as predicted by the expectation account appear only for high-capacity readers; (ii) increasing dependency length by interposing material that modifies the head of the dependency (the verb) produces stronger facilitation than increasing dependency length with material that does not modify the head; this is in agreement with the activation-based model but not with the expectation account; and (iii) a possible outcome of memory load on low-capacity readers is the increase in regressive saccades (locality effects as predicted by memory-based accounts) or, surprisingly, a speedup in the self-paced reading task; the latter consistent with good-enough parsing (Ferreira et al., 2002). In sum, the study suggests that individual differences in working memory capacity play a role in dependency resolution, and that some of the aspects of dependency resolution can be best explained with the activation-based model together with a prediction component. PMID:25852623

  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. The Effects of Valence and Arousal on Associative Working Memory and Long-Term Memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bergmann, H.C.; Rijpkema, M.J.P.; Fernandez, G.S.E.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Emotion can either facilitate or impair memory, depending on what, when and how memory is tested and whether the paradigm at hand is administered as a working memory (WM) or a long-term memory (LTM) task. Whereas emotionally arousing single stimuli are more likely to be remembered,

  2. 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. PMID:25875001

  3. Do the Contents of Visual Working Memory Automatically Influence Attentional Selection During Visual Search?

    OpenAIRE

    Woodman, Geoffrey F.; Luck, Steven J.

    2007-01-01

    In many theories of cognition, researchers propose that working memory and perception operate interactively. For example, in previous studies researchers have suggested that sensory inputs matching the contents of working memory will have an automatic advantage in the competition for processing resources. The authors tested this hypothesis by requiring observers to perform a visual search task while concurrently maintaining object representations in visual working memory. The hypothesis that ...

  4. Working Memory Maturation: Can We Get At the Essence of Cognitive Growth?

    OpenAIRE

    Cowan, Nelson

    2016-01-01

    Our theoretical and practical understanding of cognitive development depends on working memory, the limited information temporarily accessible for such daily activities as language processing and problem-solving. Here I assess many possible reasons why working memory performance improves with development. A first glance at the literature leads to the weird impression that working memory capacity reaches adult-like levels during infancy but then regresses during childhood. In place of that unl...

  5. Working memory and fluid intelligence: capacity, attention control, and secondary memory retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unsworth, Nash; Fukuda, Keisuke; Awh, Edward; Vogel, Edward K

    2014-06-01

    Several theories have been put forth to explain the relation between working memory (WM) and gF. Unfortunately, no single factor has been shown to fully account for the relation between these two important constructs. In the current study we tested whether multiple factors (capacity, attention control, and secondary memory) would collectively account for the relation. A large number of participants performed multiple measures of each construct and latent variable analyses were used to examine the data. The results demonstrated that capacity, attention control, and secondary memory were uniquely related to WM storage, WM processing, and gF. Importantly, the three factors completely accounted for the relation between WM (both processing and storage) and gF. Thus, although storage and processing make independent contributions to gF, both of these contributions are accounted for by variation in capacity, attention control and secondary memory. These results are consistent with the multifaceted view of WM, suggesting that individual differences in capacity, attention control, and secondary memory jointly account for individual differences in WM and its relation with gF. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. 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,

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Greg D. Reynolds

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, 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 & 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 paper, 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 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.

  9. Acute stress affects prospective memory functions via associative memory processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szőllősi, Ágnes; Pajkossy, Péter; Demeter, Gyula; Kéri, Szabolcs; Racsmány, Mihály

    2017-11-14

    Recent findings suggest that acute stress can improve the execution of delayed intentions (prospective memory, PM). However, it is unclear whether this improvement can be explained by altered executive control processes or by altered associative memory functioning. To investigate this issue, we used physical-psychosocial stressors to induce acute stress in laboratory settings. Then participants completed event- and time-based PM tasks requiring the different contribution of control processes and a control task (letter fluency) frequently used to measure executive functions. According to our results, acute stress had no impact on ongoing task performance, time-based PM, and verbal fluency, whereas it enhanced event-based PM as measured by response speed for the prospective cues. Our findings indicate that, here, acute stress did not affect executive control processes. We suggest that stress affected event-based PM via associative memory processes. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  10. Children's inference generation: The role of vocabulary and working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Currie, Nicola Kate; Cain, Kate

    2015-09-01

    Inferences are crucial to successful discourse comprehension. We assessed the contributions of vocabulary and working memory to inference making in children aged 5 and 6years (n=44), 7 and 8years (n=43), and 9 and 10years (n=43). Children listened to short narratives and answered questions to assess local and global coherence inferences after each one. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) confirmed developmental improvements on both types of inference. Although standardized measures of both vocabulary and working memory were correlated with inference making, multiple regression analyses determined that vocabulary was the key predictor. For local coherence inferences, only vocabulary predicted unique variance for the 6- and 8-year-olds; in contrast, none of the variables predicted performance for the 10-year-olds. For global coherence inferences, vocabulary was the only unique predictor for each age group. Mediation analysis confirmed that although working memory was associated with the ability to generate local and global coherence inferences in 6- to 10-year-olds, the effect was mediated by vocabulary. We conclude that vocabulary knowledge supports inference making in two ways: through knowledge of word meanings required to generate inferences and through its contribution to memory processes. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Working Memory, Age, Crew Downsizing, System Design and Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-08-01

    Aging Crewmembers [les Consequences operationnelles du vieillissement des equipages] To order the complete compilation report, use: ADA388423 The...situational awareness of the operator It is likely that working memory holds the is by definition weaker (Endsley, 1995a, 1995b, 1988). information...related activities, that older and more experienced operators would by such as speed of information processing, storage of definition be subject to the

  12. Implicit socioemotional modulation of working memory brain activity in schizophrenia

    OpenAIRE

    Bolden, Khalima Alicia

    2016-01-01

    The neural substrate of interactions of working memory (WM) with socio-emotional processing is poorly understood in schizophrenia. This study builds on published papers using a delayed match to sample design to study the interaction of WM load with type of distracter (socially relevant faces vs. socially irrelevant geometric designs [FvG]) presented briefly during the WM maintenance period. Based on previously published findings, we hypothesize: (1) The FvG difference in brain activity in th...

  13. Two visual working memory representations simultaneously control attention

    OpenAIRE

    Chen, Yanan; Du, Feng

    2017-01-01

    It has been proposed that only one visual working memory (VWM) representation can be activated to influence perception directly, whereas other VWM representations are accessory items which have little influence on visual selection. The sole active VWM representation might reflect a fundamental bottleneck in the information processing of human beings. However, the present study showed that each of two VWM representations can capture attention and interfere with concurrent visual search. In add...

  14. 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.

  15. Effective visual working memory capacity: an emergent effect from the neural dynamics in an attractor network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Dempere-Marco

    Full Text Available The study of working memory capacity is of outmost importance in cognitive psychology as working memory is at the basis of general cognitive function. Although the working memory capacity limit has been thoroughly studied, its origin still remains a matter of strong debate. Only recently has the role of visual saliency in modulating working memory storage capacity been assessed experimentally and proved to provide valuable insights into working memory function. In the computational arena, attractor networks have successfully accounted for psychophysical and neurophysiological data in numerous working memory tasks given their ability to produce a sustained elevated firing rate during a delay period. Here we investigate the mechanisms underlying working memory capacity by means of a biophysically-realistic attractor network with spiking neurons while accounting for two recent experimental observations: 1 the presence of a visually salient item reduces the number of items that can be held in working memory, and 2 visually salient items are commonly kept in memory at the cost of not keeping as many non-salient items. Our model suggests that working memory capacity is determined by two fundamental processes: encoding of visual items into working memory and maintenance of the encoded items upon their removal from the visual display. While maintenance critically depends on the constraints that lateral inhibition imposes to the mnemonic activity, encoding is limited by the ability of the stimulated neural assemblies to reach a sufficiently high level of excitation, a process governed by the dynamics of competition and cooperation among neuronal pools. Encoding is therefore contingent upon the visual working memory task and has led us to introduce the concept of effective working memory capacity (eWMC in contrast to the maximal upper capacity limit only reached under ideal conditions.

  16. Effective Visual Working Memory Capacity: An Emergent Effect from the Neural Dynamics in an Attractor Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempere-Marco, Laura; Melcher, David P.; Deco, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    The study of working memory capacity is of outmost importance in cognitive psychology as working memory is at the basis of general cognitive function. Although the working memory capacity limit has been thoroughly studied, its origin still remains a matter of strong debate. Only recently has the role of visual saliency in modulating working memory storage capacity been assessed experimentally and proved to provide valuable insights into working memory function. In the computational arena, attractor networks have successfully accounted for psychophysical and neurophysiological data in numerous working memory tasks given their ability to produce a sustained elevated firing rate during a delay period. Here we investigate the mechanisms underlying working memory capacity by means of a biophysically-realistic attractor network with spiking neurons while accounting for two recent experimental observations: 1) the presence of a visually salient item reduces the number of items that can be held in working memory, and 2) visually salient items are commonly kept in memory at the cost of not keeping as many non-salient items. Our model suggests that working memory capacity is determined by two fundamental processes: encoding of visual items into working memory and maintenance of the encoded items upon their removal from the visual display. While maintenance critically depends on the constraints that lateral inhibition imposes to the mnemonic activity, encoding is limited by the ability of the stimulated neural assemblies to reach a sufficiently high level of excitation, a process governed by the dynamics of competition and cooperation among neuronal pools. Encoding is therefore contingent upon the visual working memory task and has led us to introduce the concept of effective working memory capacity (eWMC) in contrast to the maximal upper capacity limit only reached under ideal conditions. PMID:22952608

  17. Effective visual working memory capacity: an emergent effect from the neural dynamics in an attractor network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempere-Marco, Laura; Melcher, David P; Deco, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    The study of working memory capacity is of outmost importance in cognitive psychology as working memory is at the basis of general cognitive function. Although the working memory capacity limit has been thoroughly studied, its origin still remains a matter of strong debate. Only recently has the role of visual saliency in modulating working memory storage capacity been assessed experimentally and proved to provide valuable insights into working memory function. In the computational arena, attractor networks have successfully accounted for psychophysical and neurophysiological data in numerous working memory tasks given their ability to produce a sustained elevated firing rate during a delay period. Here we investigate the mechanisms underlying working memory capacity by means of a biophysically-realistic attractor network with spiking neurons while accounting for two recent experimental observations: 1) the presence of a visually salient item reduces the number of items that can be held in working memory, and 2) visually salient items are commonly kept in memory at the cost of not keeping as many non-salient items. Our model suggests that working memory capacity is determined by two fundamental processes: encoding of visual items into working memory and maintenance of the encoded items upon their removal from the visual display. While maintenance critically depends on the constraints that lateral inhibition imposes to the mnemonic activity, encoding is limited by the ability of the stimulated neural assemblies to reach a sufficiently high level of excitation, a process governed by the dynamics of competition and cooperation among neuronal pools. Encoding is therefore contingent upon the visual working memory task and has led us to introduce the concept of effective working memory capacity (eWMC) in contrast to the maximal upper capacity limit only reached under ideal conditions.

  18. Visual working memory and threat monitoring: Spider fearfuls show disorder-specific change detection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reinecke, A.; Becker, E.S.; Rinck, M.

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies of biased information processing in anxiety addressed biases of attention and memory, but little is known about the processes taking place between them: visual working memory (VWM) and monitoring of threat. We investigated these processes with a change detection paradigm. In

  19. Negative emotion boosts quality of visual working memory representation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Weizhen; Zhang, Weiwei

    2016-08-01

    Negative emotion impacts a variety of cognitive processes, including working memory (WM). The present study investigated whether negative emotion modulated WM capacity (quantity) or resolution (quality), 2 independent limits on WM storage. In Experiment 1, observers tried to remember several colors over 1-s delay and then recalled the color of a randomly picked memory item by clicking a best-matching color on a continuous color wheel. On each trial, before the visual WM task, 1 of 3 emotion conditions (negative, neutral, or positive) was induced by having observers to rate the valence of an International Affective Picture System image. Visual WM under negative emotion showed enhanced resolution compared with neutral and positive conditions, whereas the number of retained representations was comparable across the 3 emotion conditions. These effects were generalized to closed-contour shapes in Experiment 2. To isolate the locus of these effects, Experiment 3 adopted an iconic memory version of the color recall task by eliminating the 1-s retention interval. No significant change in the quantity or quality of iconic memory was observed, suggesting that the resolution effects in the first 2 experiments were critically dependent on the need to retain memory representations over a short period of time. Taken together, these results suggest that negative emotion selectively boosts visual WM quality, supporting the dissociable nature quantitative and qualitative aspects of visual WM representation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. Working memory capacity predicts the beneficial effect of selective memory retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlichting, Andreas; Aslan, Alp; Holterman, Christoph; Bäuml, Karl-Heinz T

    2015-01-01

    Selective retrieval of some studied items can both impair and improve recall of the other items. This study examined the role of working memory capacity (WMC) for the two effects of memory retrieval. Participant