Limits...
Encoding of goal-relevant stimuli is strengthened by emotional arousal in memory.

Lee TH, Greening SG, Mather M - Front Psychol (2015)

Bottom Line: After each set of objects were shown, arousal was manipulated by playing a previously fear-conditioned tone (i.e., CS+) or a neutral tone that had not been paired with shock (CS-).Study 2 supports this conclusion by demonstrating that when the goal was to remember all objects regardless of the spatial cue, emotional arousal induced memory enhancement in a more global manner for all objects.In sum, the two studies show that the ability of arousal to enhance memory for previously encoded items depends on the goal relevance initially assigned to those items.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, University of Southern California , Los Angeles, CA, USA ; Davis School of Gerontology, University of Southern California , Los Angeles, CA, USA.

ABSTRACT
Emotional information receives preferential processing, which facilitates adaptive strategies for survival. However, the presence of emotional stimuli and the arousal they induce also influence how surrounding non-emotional information is processed in memory (Mather and Sutherland, 2011). For example, seeing a highly emotional scene often leads to forgetting of what was seen right beforehand, but sometimes instead enhances memory for the preceding information. In two studies, we examined how emotional arousal affects short-term memory retention for goal-relevant information that was just seen. In Study 1, participants were asked to remember neutral objects in spatially-cued locations (i.e., goal-relevant objects determined by specific location), while ignoring objects in uncued locations. After each set of objects were shown, arousal was manipulated by playing a previously fear-conditioned tone (i.e., CS+) or a neutral tone that had not been paired with shock (CS-). In Study 1, memory for the goal-relevant neutral objects from arousing trials was enhanced compared to those from the non-arousing trials. This result suggests that emotional arousal helps to increase the impact of top-down priority (i.e., goal-relevancy) on memory encoding. Study 2 supports this conclusion by demonstrating that when the goal was to remember all objects regardless of the spatial cue, emotional arousal induced memory enhancement in a more global manner for all objects. In sum, the two studies show that the ability of arousal to enhance memory for previously encoded items depends on the goal relevance initially assigned to those items.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Schematic illustration of one trial for the (A) matching task (encoding phase) and (B) recognition task (test phase). In Study 1, participants were asked to remember only objects in the cued location whereas in Study 2 they were asked to remember all objects. Therefore, only objects in the cued location were top-down prioritized in Study 1, but all objects were prioritized in Study 2. The recognition task was administered right after the matching task session. Images were drawn not to scale.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4530598&req=5

Figure 1: Schematic illustration of one trial for the (A) matching task (encoding phase) and (B) recognition task (test phase). In Study 1, participants were asked to remember only objects in the cued location whereas in Study 2 they were asked to remember all objects. Therefore, only objects in the cued location were top-down prioritized in Study 1, but all objects were prioritized in Study 2. The recognition task was administered right after the matching task session. Images were drawn not to scale.

Mentions: Following the conditioning phase, the encoding phase was administered in which participants were asked to remember objects in the cued location (i.e., prioritized objects) while ignoring the other objects (Figure 1A). Once every four trials, participants were given a 1-s cue to indicate the location (either vertical or horizontal; 6.0°eccentricity) to be attended for the next four trials. After the location cue, trials began with the object display for 1 s, followed by a 1-s blank screen. Then either the CS+ or CS– tone played for 1 s while a fixation cross was shown, followed by a 2-s blank screen. In order to ensure that participants attended to the task, they were also asked to indicate whether a pair of objects in the cued location was the same or different (i.e., matching task). A 5-s ITI was presented between trials. There were two runs for the encoding phase (16 CS+ and 16 CS– trials per run), and each run was repeated twice across the study. To minimize extinction of conditioned responses, three additional CS+ trials with shock were presented randomly in each run (i.e., booster trials).


Encoding of goal-relevant stimuli is strengthened by emotional arousal in memory.

Lee TH, Greening SG, Mather M - Front Psychol (2015)

Schematic illustration of one trial for the (A) matching task (encoding phase) and (B) recognition task (test phase). In Study 1, participants were asked to remember only objects in the cued location whereas in Study 2 they were asked to remember all objects. Therefore, only objects in the cued location were top-down prioritized in Study 1, but all objects were prioritized in Study 2. The recognition task was administered right after the matching task session. Images were drawn not to scale.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4530598&req=5

Figure 1: Schematic illustration of one trial for the (A) matching task (encoding phase) and (B) recognition task (test phase). In Study 1, participants were asked to remember only objects in the cued location whereas in Study 2 they were asked to remember all objects. Therefore, only objects in the cued location were top-down prioritized in Study 1, but all objects were prioritized in Study 2. The recognition task was administered right after the matching task session. Images were drawn not to scale.
Mentions: Following the conditioning phase, the encoding phase was administered in which participants were asked to remember objects in the cued location (i.e., prioritized objects) while ignoring the other objects (Figure 1A). Once every four trials, participants were given a 1-s cue to indicate the location (either vertical or horizontal; 6.0°eccentricity) to be attended for the next four trials. After the location cue, trials began with the object display for 1 s, followed by a 1-s blank screen. Then either the CS+ or CS– tone played for 1 s while a fixation cross was shown, followed by a 2-s blank screen. In order to ensure that participants attended to the task, they were also asked to indicate whether a pair of objects in the cued location was the same or different (i.e., matching task). A 5-s ITI was presented between trials. There were two runs for the encoding phase (16 CS+ and 16 CS– trials per run), and each run was repeated twice across the study. To minimize extinction of conditioned responses, three additional CS+ trials with shock were presented randomly in each run (i.e., booster trials).

Bottom Line: After each set of objects were shown, arousal was manipulated by playing a previously fear-conditioned tone (i.e., CS+) or a neutral tone that had not been paired with shock (CS-).Study 2 supports this conclusion by demonstrating that when the goal was to remember all objects regardless of the spatial cue, emotional arousal induced memory enhancement in a more global manner for all objects.In sum, the two studies show that the ability of arousal to enhance memory for previously encoded items depends on the goal relevance initially assigned to those items.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, University of Southern California , Los Angeles, CA, USA ; Davis School of Gerontology, University of Southern California , Los Angeles, CA, USA.

ABSTRACT
Emotional information receives preferential processing, which facilitates adaptive strategies for survival. However, the presence of emotional stimuli and the arousal they induce also influence how surrounding non-emotional information is processed in memory (Mather and Sutherland, 2011). For example, seeing a highly emotional scene often leads to forgetting of what was seen right beforehand, but sometimes instead enhances memory for the preceding information. In two studies, we examined how emotional arousal affects short-term memory retention for goal-relevant information that was just seen. In Study 1, participants were asked to remember neutral objects in spatially-cued locations (i.e., goal-relevant objects determined by specific location), while ignoring objects in uncued locations. After each set of objects were shown, arousal was manipulated by playing a previously fear-conditioned tone (i.e., CS+) or a neutral tone that had not been paired with shock (CS-). In Study 1, memory for the goal-relevant neutral objects from arousing trials was enhanced compared to those from the non-arousing trials. This result suggests that emotional arousal helps to increase the impact of top-down priority (i.e., goal-relevancy) on memory encoding. Study 2 supports this conclusion by demonstrating that when the goal was to remember all objects regardless of the spatial cue, emotional arousal induced memory enhancement in a more global manner for all objects. In sum, the two studies show that the ability of arousal to enhance memory for previously encoded items depends on the goal relevance initially assigned to those items.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus