Faculty Mentor

Eric A. Vaden


Position error is the most common error in serial recall of short-term memory, especially when environment, language, or similarity factors are presented. Previous studies demonstrate some support for the serial recall resulting in less error-prone for the first and last positions than the middle positions. This study investigates the accuracy of recalling letters and their positions when given a random sequence with minimal to no external factors. The significant predictors influencing position error were the primacy and recency effects. Participants completed a 20-trial experiment on the CogLab Experimental Control Software, which presented a series of letters one at a time in order, but the order of letters varied in each trial. After displaying all the letters in each trial, participants were asked to select letters according to their original positions. The results from this study indicated that participants were most likely to recall the first letter, somewhat likely to recall the last letter, and least likely to recall the middle letters of a random sequence in their correct original positions.



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