A SPoARC in the Dark: Spatialization in Verbal Immediate Memory

Cognitive Science 40 (8):2108-2121 (2016)
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Abstract

In 2011, van Dijck and Fias described a positional SNARC effect: the SPoARC. To-be-remembered items presented centrally on a screen seemed to acquire a left-to-right spatial dimension. If confirmed, this spatialization could be crucial for immediate memory theories. However, given the intricate links between visual and spatial dimensions, this effect could be due to the visual presentation, which could have probed the left-to-right direction of reading/writing. To allow a generalization of this effect, we adapted van Dijck and Fias's task using an auditory version of Sternberg's paradigm. Lists of five consonants were auditorily presented at a rate of 3 s/item. A SPoARC effect was observed. The consequences are discussed first from an immediate memory perspective, putting forward the view that order could be coded through spatialization, and then in terms of similarities between SPoARC and SNARC.

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References found in this work

A Theory of Memory Retrieval.Roger Ratcliff - 1978 - Psychological Review 85 (2):59-108.
The Mental Representation of Parity and Number Magnitude.Stanislas Dehaene, Serge Bossini & Pascal Giraux - 1993 - Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 122 (3):371.
Long-Term Working Memory.K. Anders Ericsson & Walter Kintsch - 1995 - Psychological Review 102 (2):211-245.

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