Items that are produced (e.g., read aloud) during encoding typically are better remembered than items that are not produced (e.g., read silently). This "production effect" has been explained by distinctiveness: Produced items have more distinct features than nonproduced items, leading to enhanced retrieval. The goal of the current study was to use electroencephalography (EEG) to examine the neural basis of the production effect. During study, participants were presented with words that they were required to read silently, read aloud, or sing while EEG data were recorded. Subsequent memory performance was tested using a yes/no recognition test. Analysis focused on the event-related brain potentials (ERPs) evoked by the encoding instruction cue for each instruction condition. Our data revealed enhanced memory performance for produced items and a greater P300 ERP amplitude for instructions to sing or read aloud compared with instructions to read silently. Our results demonstrate that the amplitude of the P300 is modulated by at least 1 aspect of production, vocalization (singing/reading aloud relative to reading silently), and are consistent with the distinctiveness account of the production effect. The ERP methodology is a viable tool for investigating the production effect. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Quinlan, Chelsea K., Taylor, Tracy L., and Fawcett, Jonathan M.
Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology. Mar2010, Vol. 64 Issue 1, p41-46. 6p.
FACE perception, MEMORY, NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL tests, PICTURES, AVERSIVE stimuli, and PROBABILITY theory
The authors investigated directed forgetting as a function of the stimulus type (picture, word) presented at study and test. In an item-method directed forgetting task, study items were presented 1 at a time, each followed with equal probability by an instruction to remember or forget. Participants exhibited greater yes-no recognition of remember than forget items for each of the 4 study-test conditions (picture-picture, picture-word, word-word, word-picture). However, this difference was significantly smaller when pictures were studied than when words were studied. This finding demonstrates that the magnitude of the directed forgetting effect can be reduced by high item memorability, such as when the picture superiority effect is operating. This suggests caution in using pictures at study when the goal of an experiment is to examine potential group differences in the magnitude of the directed forgetting effect. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]