The goal of this proposal is to advance a unified model of implicit and explicit memory phenomena that spans both higher-level conceptual and lower-level perceptual effects. The model, called Source of Activation Confusion (SAC), will be tested and challenged in several ways. Specifically, experiments are proposed that test SAC's novel predictions (i.e., not necessarily expected by other accounts) and data sets will be modeled at a detailed level. The proposed research will provide ever more stringent tests of SAC's predictions and will extend the range of inquiry concerning cognitive processing. The framework makes several controversial claims. For example, it claims that implicit memory is not a separate system from (or independent of) explicit memory, and that there are two processes for recognition: one based on familiarity, the other based on recollection. The proposal includes tests of the extent to which memory enhancement from the re-instatement of (ostensibly irrelevant) perceptual cues can be attributed to effects at retrieval versus at encoding. It is proposed that within the human cognitive system there is a trade-off between familiarity and distinctiveness. Familiarity eases encoding but is also responsible for habituation or inattention. Distinctiveness challenges encoding but once distinctive features are represented in memory, they serve as excellent retrieval cues. Familiar cues are less useful for retrieval (due to contextual interference); however, the memory system compensates by allowing familiarity based responding. Part of the proposed extension of the theory to encoding involves an attempt to further understand what determines whether a partial match is accepted, resulting in a distortion going undetected, and what determines whether a mismatch is considered salient. ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
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Biobehavioral and Behavioral Processes 3 (BBBP)
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Glanzman, Dennis L
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Carnegie-Mellon University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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