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Training-induced compensation versus magnification of individual differences in memory performance.

Lövdén M, Brehmer Y, Li SC, Lindenberger U - Front Hum Neurosci (2012)

Bottom Line: Initial mnemonic instructions reduced between-person differences in memory performance, whereas further practice after instruction magnified between-person differences.We conclude that strategy instruction compensates for inefficient processing among the initially less able.In contrast, continued practice magnifies ability-based between-person differences by uncovering individual differences in memory plasticity.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Lifespan Psychology, Max Planck Institute for Human Development Berlin, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Do individuals with higher levels of task-relevant cognitive resources gain more from training, or do they gain less? For episodic memory, empirical evidence is mixed. Here, we revisit this issue by applying structural equation models for capturing individual differences in change to data from 108 participants aged 9-12, 20-25, and 65-78 years. Participants learned and practiced an imagery-based mnemonic to encode and retrieve words by location cues. Initial mnemonic instructions reduced between-person differences in memory performance, whereas further practice after instruction magnified between-person differences. We conclude that strategy instruction compensates for inefficient processing among the initially less able. In contrast, continued practice magnifies ability-based between-person differences by uncovering individual differences in memory plasticity.

No MeSH data available.


Timed Recall Scores averaged over sessions by list position within a session for each individual in the group of children (A), younger adults (B), and older adults (C). Each line represents the scores for one individual.
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Figure 3: Timed Recall Scores averaged over sessions by list position within a session for each individual in the group of children (A), younger adults (B), and older adults (C). Each line represents the scores for one individual.

Mentions: In addition to the standard modeling of the time series with polynomials, we included session-wise factors representing the unique linear slope within a session. The loadings of the observed variables (six location-word lists for each of the seven sessions) on the session-wise slope factors (SS1–SS7) were defined as linearly increasing across lists within a session. The session-wise slope factors were included because we expected proactive interference from the preceding lists (e.g., Kliegl and Lindenberger, 1993) and, to some extent, other reactive effects related to list-order (e.g., fatigue) to reduce practice-related gains on performance within sessions. We freely estimated the means of the session-wise slope factors (μSS1–μSS7) but fixed their standard deviations to zero. The assumption that the session-wise reactive effects took on a linear form without interindividual differences were based on visual inspection of the data. Specifically, we averaged the Timed Recall Score over sessions by list position within a session for each individual. Separately for the age groups, the individual means are displayed as a function of list position in Figure 3, which clearly suggests an approximately linear decrease as a function of list position for most of the individuals. Furthermore, individual differences in the slopes appeared to be limited. Indeed, preliminary analyses allowing the variances for the session-wise slopes to be estimated did not result in an increase in fit, further bolstering the decisions to model these session-wise slopes without allowing for interindividual differences.


Training-induced compensation versus magnification of individual differences in memory performance.

Lövdén M, Brehmer Y, Li SC, Lindenberger U - Front Hum Neurosci (2012)

Timed Recall Scores averaged over sessions by list position within a session for each individual in the group of children (A), younger adults (B), and older adults (C). Each line represents the scores for one individual.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3351801&req=5

Figure 3: Timed Recall Scores averaged over sessions by list position within a session for each individual in the group of children (A), younger adults (B), and older adults (C). Each line represents the scores for one individual.
Mentions: In addition to the standard modeling of the time series with polynomials, we included session-wise factors representing the unique linear slope within a session. The loadings of the observed variables (six location-word lists for each of the seven sessions) on the session-wise slope factors (SS1–SS7) were defined as linearly increasing across lists within a session. The session-wise slope factors were included because we expected proactive interference from the preceding lists (e.g., Kliegl and Lindenberger, 1993) and, to some extent, other reactive effects related to list-order (e.g., fatigue) to reduce practice-related gains on performance within sessions. We freely estimated the means of the session-wise slope factors (μSS1–μSS7) but fixed their standard deviations to zero. The assumption that the session-wise reactive effects took on a linear form without interindividual differences were based on visual inspection of the data. Specifically, we averaged the Timed Recall Score over sessions by list position within a session for each individual. Separately for the age groups, the individual means are displayed as a function of list position in Figure 3, which clearly suggests an approximately linear decrease as a function of list position for most of the individuals. Furthermore, individual differences in the slopes appeared to be limited. Indeed, preliminary analyses allowing the variances for the session-wise slopes to be estimated did not result in an increase in fit, further bolstering the decisions to model these session-wise slopes without allowing for interindividual differences.

Bottom Line: Initial mnemonic instructions reduced between-person differences in memory performance, whereas further practice after instruction magnified between-person differences.We conclude that strategy instruction compensates for inefficient processing among the initially less able.In contrast, continued practice magnifies ability-based between-person differences by uncovering individual differences in memory plasticity.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Lifespan Psychology, Max Planck Institute for Human Development Berlin, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Do individuals with higher levels of task-relevant cognitive resources gain more from training, or do they gain less? For episodic memory, empirical evidence is mixed. Here, we revisit this issue by applying structural equation models for capturing individual differences in change to data from 108 participants aged 9-12, 20-25, and 65-78 years. Participants learned and practiced an imagery-based mnemonic to encode and retrieve words by location cues. Initial mnemonic instructions reduced between-person differences in memory performance, whereas further practice after instruction magnified between-person differences. We conclude that strategy instruction compensates for inefficient processing among the initially less able. In contrast, continued practice magnifies ability-based between-person differences by uncovering individual differences in memory plasticity.

No MeSH data available.