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A dual-route model of proactive interference in working memory and its application in schizotypy

O'Sullivan, Noreen (2010)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Proactive interference (PI), the negative impact of previously encoded information on the ability to represent current information that is similar in some way, has recently been shown to impair working memory (WM) performance. In this thesis, two types of interference were separated, one related to the content of encoded information, the other to contextual aspects of encoded information. Context-related interference was altered by a manipulation of context, and was related to a quadratic serial position curve. This type of interference was related to the process of recollection, and was argued to be mediated by an associative mechanism in WM. Content-related interference was altered by a manipulation of content. This type of interference was related to the process of familiarity, and is argued to be mediated by a binding mechanism in WM. A further differentiation between the two types of interference was demonstrated in their relationship to positive and negative schizotypy traits. Current theories of the relationship between PI and WM suggest that it is mediated by a unitary process or mechanism. The findings here demonstrate the validity of a dual-route description of this relationship. In addition, they show the potential of distinguishing between a binding mechanism and an associative mechanism within the WM system. Finally, they demonstrate how this distinction between binding and associating may benefit an understanding of the relationship between schizotypy traits and cognition.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Humphreys, Glyn W.
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
Department:School of Psychology
Subjects:BF Psychology
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:715
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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