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The effects of divided attention at study and reporting procedure on regulation and monitoring for episodic recall


Sauer, J and Hope, L, The effects of divided attention at study and reporting procedure on regulation and monitoring for episodic recall, Acta Psychologica, 169 pp. 143-156. ISSN 0001-6918 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

© 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2016.05.015


Eyewitnesses regulate the level of detail (grain size) reported to balance competing demands for informativeness and accuracy. However, research to date has predominantly examined metacognitive monitoring for semantic memory tasks, and used relatively artificial phased reporting procedures. Further, although the established role of confidence in this regulation process may affect the confidence–accuracy relation for volunteered responses in predictable ways, previous investigations of the confidence–accuracy relation for eyewitness recall have largely overlooked the regulation of response granularity. Using a non-phased paradigm, Experiment 1 compared reporting and monitoring following optimal and sub-optimal (divided attention) encoding conditions. Participants showed evidence of sacrificing accuracy for informativeness, even when memory quality was relatively weak. Participants in the divided (cf. full) attention condition showed reduced accuracy for fine- but not coarse-grained responses. However, indices of discrimination and confidence diagnosticity showed no effect of divided attention. Experiment 2 compared the effects of divided attention at encoding on reporting and monitoring using both non-phased and 2-phase procedures. Divided attention effects were consistent with Experiment 1. However, compared to those in the non-phased condition, participants in the 2-phase condition displayed a more conservative control strategy, and confidence ratings were less diagnostic of accuracy. When memory quality was reduced, although attempts to balance informativeness and accuracy increased the chance of fine-grained response errors, confidence provided an index of the likely accuracy of volunteered fine-grained responses for both condition.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:metacognition, memory, confidence, grain size, recall, metacognitive monitoring, confidence, eyewitness memory, divided attention
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Applied and developmental psychology
Research Field:Forensic psychology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in psychology
UTAS Author:Sauer, J (Associate Professor Jim Sauer)
ID Code:109581
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:21
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2016-06-22
Last Modified:2018-03-22

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