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Effects of Saccade Induced Retrieval Enhancement on Conceptual and Perceptual Tests of Explicit & Implicit Memory

Parker, A and Powell, D and Dagnall, N (2017) Effects of Saccade Induced Retrieval Enhancement on Conceptual and Perceptual Tests of Explicit & Implicit Memory. Brain and Cognition. ISSN 0278-2626 (In Press)

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Abstract

The effects of saccadic horizontal (bilateral) eye movements upon tests of both conceptual and perceptual forms of explicit and implicit memory were investigated. Participants studied a list of words and were then assigned to one of four test conditions: conceptual explicit, conceptual implicit, perceptual explicit, or perceptual implicit. Conceptual tests comprised category labels with either explicit instructions to recall corresponding examples from the study phase (category-cued recall), or implicit instructions to generate any corresponding examples that spontaneously came to mind (category-exemplar generation). Perceptual tests comprised of word-fragments with either explicit instructions to complete these with study items (word-fragment-cued recall), or implicit instructions to complete each fragment with the first word that simply ‘popped to mind’ (word-fragment completion). Just prior to retrieval, participants were required to engage in 30s of bilateral vs. no eye movements. Results revealed that saccadic horizontal eye movements enhanced performance in only the conceptual explicit condition, indicating that Saccade-Induced Retrieval Enhancement is a joint function of conceptual and explicit retrieval mechanisms. Findings are discussed from both a cognitive and neuropsychological perspective, in terms of their potential functional and neural underpinnings.

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