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What does a patient with semantic dementia remember in verbal short-term memory? Order and sound but not words
Majerus , S., NORRIS, D. & PATTERSON, K.
Cognitive Neuropsychology , 24(2), 131-151
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In this study, we explored capacities for three different aspects of short-term verbal memory in patients with semantic dementia. As expected, the two patients has poor recall for lexicosemantic item information, as assessed by immediate serial recall of word lists. In contrast, their short-term memory for phonological information was preserved, as evidenced by normal performance for immediate serial recall of nonwords lists, with normal or increased nonword phonotactic frequency effects, and increased sensitivity to phonological lures in a delayed probe recognition task. Furthermore, the patients appeared to have excellent memory for the serial order of the words in a list. These data provide further support for the proposal that language knowledge is a major determining factor of verbal STM capacity, but they also highlight the necessary distinction of processes involved in item and order recall, as proposed by recent models of STM.