Serial position functions for recognition of olfactory stimuli

This source preferred by Andrew Johnson

Authors: Johnson, A.J. and Miles, C.

Journal: Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology

Volume: 60

Pages: 1347-1355

ISSN: 1747-0218

DOI: 10.1080/17470210701515694

Two experiments examined item recognition memory for sequentially presented odours. Following a sequence of six odours participants were immediately presented with a series of 2-alternative forced choice (2AFC) test odours. The test pairs were presented in either the same order as learning or the reverse order of learning. Method of testing was either blocked (Experiment 1) or mixed (Experiment 2). Both experiments demonstrated extended recency, with an absence of primacy, for the reverse testing procedure. In contrast, the forward testing procedure revealed a null effect of serial position. The finding of extended recency is inconsistent with the single-item recency predicted by the two-component duplex theory (Phillips and Christie, 1977). We offer an alternative account of the data in which recognition accuracy is better accommodated by the cumulative number of items presented between item learning and item test.

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