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Semantic relatedness corrects the age-related binding deficit in working memory and episodic memory

Loaiza, Vanessa and Srokova, Sabina (2019) 'Semantic relatedness corrects the age-related binding deficit in working memory and episodic memory.' Journals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences. ISSN 1079-5014

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Abstract

Objectives: It is well-known that age differentially impacts aspects of long-term episodic memory (EM): Whereas a binding deficit indicates that older adults are less capable than younger adults to encode or retrieve associations between information (e.g., the pairing between two memoranda, such as lock –race), item memory is relatively intact (e.g., recognizing lock without its original pairing). Method: We tested whether this deficit could be corrected by facilitating establishment of the bindings in working memory (WM) through adapting the semantic relatedness of studied pairs according to participants’ ongoing performance(Experiments 1 and 2).We also examined whether this was evident for the long-term retention of pairs that were not tested in WM (Experiment 2). Results: The results revealed matched binding and item memory in WM and EM between age groups. Most importantly, older adults required increased semantic strength between word pairs to achieve similar performance to that of younger adults, regardless of whether pairs were immediately tested during the WM task. Discussion: These findings indicate that relying on their superior semantic memory can correct the commonly exhibited profound deficit in binding memory in older age.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: associative memory, episodic memory, semantic memory, working memory
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 16 May 2019 15:46
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2019 14:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/24522

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