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Interference effects in short-term motor memory

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Item Summary

Title: Interference effects in short-term motor memory
Authors: Pepper, Ross Laurence
Keywords: Memory
Issue Date: 1969
Publisher: [Honolulu]
Abstract: Five experiments were conducted to determine the characteristics of motor short-term memory. The motor task used in all studies was the application of an isometric force to a control knob in either the upward or the downward direction, though with no actual movement of the control knob. Retention of the applied force was studied as a function of time and of other activities. Experiment I indicated that forgetting did not increase with time, for retention intervals of up to 60 sec. Experiment II found significant improvements in recall, and confirmed the previous observation of Experiment I of an overshooting response set during the recall trials. Experiment II also demonstrated a generally-increased decrement in recall when the retention interval was filled with backwards-counting as opposed to unfilled intervals, which suggested the importance of generalized muscle-tension states in motor memory. Experiment III compared the relative effectiveness of an interpolated counting task with an interpolated force-application task in generating interference using a standard RI design. Interference was noted in the form of a directional biasing. Smaller interpolated forces produced smaller errors than did larger interpolated forces. The results of Experiment IV provided further support for the directional-biasing mechanism, using a PI design. Experiment V investigated the effects of repetition on the forgetting function. The results indicated that with more repetition, performance at recall deteriorates. A consideration of the overshooting response set associated with the force task, in conjunction with a fading trace theory of memory reconciled the contradictory findings. Conclusions integrated the results of all five studies within a dual-factor theory of motor short-term memory. The factors were trace decay and trace interaction. Given a response set of overshooting, the type of anomalous results noted in the present paper are predictable by the two factors; given undershooting as in prior studies, typical forgetting functions are predictable.
Description: Typescript.
Bibliography: leaves [146]-151.
x, 151 l illus
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Psychology

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