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Gepubliceerd in: Psychological Research 6/2017

16-09-2016 | Original Article

A cow on the prairie vs. a cow on the street: long-term consequences of semantic conflict on episodic encoding

Auteurs: Javier Ortiz-Tudela, Bruce Milliken, Fabiano Botta, Mitchell LaPointe, Juan Lupiañez

Gepubliceerd in: Psychological Research | Uitgave 6/2017

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Abstract

Long-term effects of cognitive conflict on performance are not as well understood as immediate effects. We used a change detection task to explore long-term consequences of cognitive conflict by manipulating the congruity between a changing object and a background scene. According to conflict-based accounts of memory formation, incongruent trials (e.g., a cow on the street), in spite of hindering immediate performance, should promote stronger encoding than congruent trials (e.g., a cow on a prairie). Surprisingly, across three experiments we show that semantic incongruity actually impairs remembering of the information presented during scene processing. This set of results is incompatible with the frequently accepted hypothesis of conflict-triggered learning. Rather, we discuss the present data and other studies previously reported in the literature in the light of two much older hypotheses of memory formation: the desirable difficulty and the levels of processing principles.

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Voetnoten
1
From the original stimulus set, images displaying the exact same background scene (regardless of the target object) were removed and not used in this experiment to avoid recognition problems caused by image similarity.
 
2
Participants were instructed in the remember/know (RK) distinction (Rajaram, 1993) and, for OLD responses, they were asked to report whether their response was based on a feeling of remembering or on a feeling of knowing. Nevertheless, posterior analyses revealed that this distinction did not affect in any way the pattern of results and thus it will not be reported for this experiment, nor for any other experiment in the present study.
 
3
In a similar experiment run as a follow up of the present findings with a sample size of 36 participants we replicated the results from the study phase and the memory test with satisfactory significance levels (p < 0.05). Thus we can safely assume that equating the sample sizes from Experiment 3 to that of Experiment 1 will likely render the numerical differences found here statistically significant.
 
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Metagegevens
Titel
A cow on the prairie vs. a cow on the street: long-term consequences of semantic conflict on episodic encoding
Auteurs
Javier Ortiz-Tudela
Bruce Milliken
Fabiano Botta
Mitchell LaPointe
Juan Lupiañez
Publicatiedatum
16-09-2016
Uitgeverij
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Gepubliceerd in
Psychological Research / Uitgave 6/2017
Print ISSN: 0340-0727
Elektronisch ISSN: 1430-2772
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-016-0805-y