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Psychol Sci. 2005 Jan;16(1):41-7.

Developments in declarative memory.

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Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455-0345, USA.


The second year of life is marked by changes in the robustness of recall memory. Both retrieval and storage processes have been implicated as the major source of age-related improvements in recall. Children 13 to 20 months of age were matched for levels of learning of laboratory events (thereby eliminating encoding as a source of developmental difference) and tested for recall after delays as long as 6 months. In Experiment 1, 16-month-olds evidenced less loss of information and more relearning than 13-month-olds. In Experiment 2, 20-month-olds evidenced less loss of information and more relearning than 16-month-olds. Patterns of performance across test trials and in relearning implicate a decline in susceptibility to storage failure as the primary source of the observed developmental trend.

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