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Front Psychol. 2014 Dec 18;5:1465. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01465. eCollection 2014.

Individual differences in working memory capacity and workload capacity.

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Department of Psychology, National Cheng Kung University Tainan, Taiwan.


We investigated the relationship between working memory capacity (WMC) and workload capacity (WLC). Each participant performed an operation span (OSPAN) task to measure his/her WMC and three redundant-target detection tasks to measure his/her WLC. WLC was computed non-parametrically (Experiments 1 and 2) and parametrically (Experiment 2). Both levels of analyses showed that participants high in WMC had larger WLC than those low in WMC only when redundant information came from visual and auditory modalities, suggesting that high-WMC participants had superior processing capacity in dealing with redundant visual and auditory information. This difference was eliminated when multiple processes required processing for only a single working memory subsystem in a color-shape detection task and a double-dot detection task. These results highlighted the role of executive control in integrating and binding information from the two working memory subsystems for perceptual decision making.


executive function; linear ballistic accumulator model; systems factorial technology; working memory capacity; workload capacity

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