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Psychol Sci. 2001 Nov;12(6):457-61.

Implementation intentions and facilitation of prospective memory.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. chasteen@psych.utoronto.ca

Abstract

Forming detailed implementation intentions for a future behavior can increase the probability that the behavior is actually completed. We investigated whether this intention effect could be used to improve prospective memory in older adults. As expected, participants who formed an implementation intention were more than twice as likely to self-initiate the intended behavior (writing down the day of the week on every sheet of paper received during the experiment) compared with participants who either were merely instructed to do so or actively rehearsed the instruction. Forming an implementation intention, however did not improve performance on a task that required a response to salient cues. We conclude that detailed implementation intentions facilitate prospective memory on tasks that lack salient cues and require self-initiation.

PMID:
11760131
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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