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Modality and long-term memory.
Conway, M. & Gathercole, S.
Journal of Memory and Language, 26, 341-361.
Year of publication:
Four studies employing an incidental learning paradigm investigated modality effects in long-term memory. In the first three studies subjects were presented with a mixed-mode list in which they read words aloud, mouthed words, and read words silently. In the fourth study subjects heard words, read words silently, or read words and heard words. After the learning phase in each experiment subjects were given a delayed surprise memory test in which they recognized or recalled the words and made a judgement of presentation modality. Memory for list items was sifnificantly higher following speech-based than silently read presentation. Memory for modality of input was significantly lower for mouthed compared to spoken or silently read presentations. Memory for modality in heard only, and silently read only, presentations was significantly higher than heard and read presentation. These findings demonstrate powerful modality effects in long-term memory and suggest that memory performance may be mediated by the relational distinctiveness of perceptual attributes associated with encodings of different input modes. Additional findings indicated that metamemory heuristics, dissociable from memory performamce, may also influence modality judgements.