On the basis of their scores on composite measures of frontal and temporal lobe function, derived from neuropsychological testing, seniors were divided preexperimentally into 4 groups. Participants studied a list of unrelated words under full attention and recalled them while concurrently performing an animacy decision task to words, an odd-digit identification task to numbers, or no distracting task. Large interference effects on memory were produced by the animacy but not by the odd-digit distracting task, and this pattern was not influenced by level of frontal or temporal lobe function. Results show associative retrieval is largely disrupted by competition for common representations, and it is not affected by a reduction in general processing resources, attentional capacity, or competition for memory structures in the temporal lobe.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology