Memory for Modality: Within Modality Discrimination Is Not Automatic

Document Type



Behavioral and Organizational Sciences (CGU)

Publication Date



Cognitive Psychology | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences


In 2 experiments, investigated the automaticity of attribute memory; Ss were a total of 78 high school and college students. Results show that when instructed to attend to the case and color in which words were presented, Ss' retention input mode improved, but their recognition performance was depressed. Allocating attention to input mode thus appears to result in diminished attention to semantic aspects of words. When case and color were uncorrelated with taxonomic category, memory for mode of input dropped to chance levels. When case and color were redundant with taxonomic category, memory for mode of input was better than chance. Findings suggest, however, that this result was due to rule learning rather than to memory for input mode for individual items.

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© 1974 American Psychological Association

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