Journal Article Long-term phonological knowledge supports serial ordering in working memory.

Nakayama, Masataka  ,  Tanida, Yuki  ,  Saito, Satoru

41 ( 5 )  , pp.1570 - 1578 , 2015-09 , American Psychological Association
Serial ordering mechanisms have been investigated extensively in psychology and psycholinguistics. It has also been demonstrated repeatedly that long-term phonological knowledge contributes to serial ordering. However, the mechanisms that contribute to serial ordering have yet to be fully understood. To understand these mechanisms, we demonstrate 2 effects using triples of Japanese nonwords in immediate serial recall. One, a type of bielement frequency effect, is a retrograde compatibility effect. Bielement frequency effects are well-established phenomena whereby a 2-element sequence (e.g., "ka-re") that frequently appears in a language instantiates better recall of any sequence that includes this element (e.g., "ka-re-su-mo"). We demonstrate that bielement frequency affected both the first (e.g., "ka" for "ka-re"; retrograde compatibility effect) and second part of a sequence, indicating the existence of minicontext representations of 2-element sequences. The other effects are the position-element(s) frequency effects, whereby an element (e.g., the mora "ka") that more frequently appears in 1 position of a sequence (e.g., in the first mora of a word) than in other positions facilitates better recall of that element (i.e., the first mora). The effects demonstrated in this article indicate the long-term associations of position representations and elements. These effects are discussed in terms of the extensive learning hypothesis, which assumes that phonological structures are learned gradually. Implications for computational models are also discussed.

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