Authors: Ishiguro, S., & Saito, S.

Title: The detrimental effect of semantic similarity in short-term memory tasks: A meta-regression approach

Journal(書誌情報): Psychonomic Bulletin & Review

doi: 10.3758/s13423-020-01815-7


Abstract: The literature suggests that semantic similarity has a weak or null effect for immediate serial reconstruction and a facilitative effect for immediate serial recall. These observed semantic similarity effects are inconsistent with the assumptions of short-term memory (STM) models on the detrimental effect of similarity (e.g., confusion) and with observations of a robust detrimental effect of phonological similarity. Our review indicates that the experimental results are likely dependent on the manipulation strength for semantic similarity and that manipulations used in previous studies might have affected semantic association as well as semantic similarity. To address these possible issues, two indices are proposed: (a) strength of manipulation on semantic similarity, gained by quantifying semantic similarity based on Osgood and associates’ dimensional view of semantics, and (b) inter-item associative strength, a possible confounding factor. Our review and the results of a meta-regression analysis using these two indices suggest that semantic similarity has a detrimental effect on both serial reconstruction and serial recall, while semantic association, which is correlated with semantic similarity, contributes to an apparent facilitative effect. An effect that is not attributable to similarity or association was also implied. Review on item and order memory further suggests the facilitative effect of semantic association on item memory and the detrimental effect of the semantic similarity on order memory. Based on our findings, we propose a unified explanation of observations of semantic similarity effects for both serial reconstruction and serial recall that is in good accord with STM models.

著者Contact先の email: ishiguro.sho.grocio[at][at]を@に変更してください。)

日本語によるコメント: これまでの短期記憶研究では、意味的類似性は系列再生課題に対しては正の効果を持ち、系列再構成課題については弱い負の効果を持つか、効果がないと考えられてきました。これは、音韻的類似性や視覚的類似性が負の効果を持つことと対照的です。さらに、短期記憶のモデルは類似性が一般に負の効果を持つことが想定されており、意味的類似性の効果は理論に一致しないものと考えられます。本研究では、メタ回帰分析というメタ分析の手法を使いレビューを行うことで、意味的類似性が短期記憶課題に対して負の効果を持つことを示しました。本研究の知見は、意味的要因を短期記憶の一般的なモデルへ統合する手掛かりになると考えられます。(石黒)