Send to

Choose Destination
J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn. 1989 Nov;15(6):1185-91.

Effects of age and a divided attention task presented during encoding and retrieval on memory.

Author information

University of Georgia, Athens 30602.


The present studies were designed to examine age differences in memory when attention was divided during encoding, retrieval, or at both times. In Experiment 1, Ss studied categorized words while performing a number-monitoring task during encoding, retrieval, or at both times. Older Ss' free recall and clustering performance declined more than that of young Ss when attention was divided at encoding, but there was no similar age interaction when divided attention occurred at retrieval. In Experiment 2, the task demands at retrieval were increased by using a fast-paced, cued-recall task. The results remained unchanged from Experiment 1. Again, an age interaction occurred with divided attention at encoding but not at retrieval. These results were unexpected, given the emphasis in the memory-aging literature on increased difficulty of retrieval by older adults. The findings pose difficulties for limited processing resource views of age differences in memory.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for American Psychological Association
Loading ...
Support Center