Recent temporal distinctiveness models of memory predict that temporally isolated items will be recalled better than temporally crowded items. The effect has been found in some tasks (free recall, memory for serial order when report order is unconstrained, running memory span) but not in others (forward serial recall). Such results suggest that the attentional weighting given to a temporal dimension in memory may vary with task demands. Here, we find robust temporal isolation effects in recognition memory (Experiment 1) and a smaller isolation effect in forward serial recall when an open pool of items is used (Experiment 2). Analysis of 26 temporal isolation effects suggests that the phenomenon occurs in a range of tasks but is larger when it is useful to attend to a temporal dimension in memory. The overall pattern of results is taken to favor memory models that rely on multiple weighted dimensions in memory, one of which is temporal.
- Cognitive Science
- OUTPUT ORDER