High- and low-frequency words are recalled equally well in alternating lists: Evidence for associative effects in serial recall

Charles Hulme, George Stuart, Gordon D.A. Brown, Caroline Morin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Three experiments investigate the effects of mixing items of different types in the same list. Experiments 1 and 2 compare the immediate serial recall of high- and low-frequency words in pure and alternating lists. In pure lists high-frequency words are better recalled, but in alternating lists the two types of words are recalled at intermediate, and identical, levels. Experiment 3 compares the recall of words and nonwords. In pure lists nonwords are recalled substantially less well than words. In alternating lists nonwords gain a substantial recall advantage compared to pure lists but are still less well recalled than words, which are recalled at identical levels in both mixed and alternating lists. The results refute item-based redintegration accounts of frequency effects in immediate serial recall and provide evidence for the importance of inter-item associative mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)500-518
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Memory and Language
Volume49
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Feb 2003
Externally publishedYes

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