Strategic grouping in the spatial span memory task.

Memory (Hove, England)

PubMedID: 17077033

Ridgeway D. Strategic grouping in the spatial span memory task. Memory. 2006;14(8):990-1000.
Spatial short-term memory performance was examined in relation to participants' strategies. A total of 20 adult participants viewed and reproduced sequences of locations that varied in length (five, six, seven, or eight locations) and spatial separability (a manipulation of the configurations). In trial-by-trial self-reports, participants described five types of strategies. Chunking the spatial sequences into groups of three or four locations was the sole strategy associated with increased accuracy. Participants demonstrated considerable variability in the strategies that they selected, suggesting that cognitive resources are allocated to strategy selection, execution, and monitoring in the spatial span task. Spatially separable sequences were more accurately recalled than nonseparable sequences, independent of strategic grouping, suggesting two levels of grouping in the spatial span task.