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Mem Cognit. 2008 Jan;36(1):104-18.

Cue-framing effects in source remembering: a memory misattribution model.

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Department of Psychology, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri 63130, USA.


During source remembering, selectively emphasizing one source in the retrieval query "Is this item from Source A?" can yield different accuracy than emphasizing the alternate source in "Is this item from Source B?" even if those are the only two possible origins. One account of this cue-framing effect holds that it reflects different active monitoring strategies encouraged by the two cue frames. An item memory misattribution (IMM) model instead assumes that this effect reflects the uncontrolled use of item recognition during confirmatory source judgments, and an IMM model simulation predicted a quantitative relationship between recognition levels and the cue-framing effect. Experiments 1 and 3 confirmed these predictions by using study repetitions to manipulate recognition levels, and Experiments 2 and 3 also demonstrated the effect with new source tasks not previously considered. The data suggest that, in addition to qualitative monitoring strategies, subjects also use the availability of item memory in a heuristic fashion during confirmatory source attributions.

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