The influence of visual secondary tasks on prospective memory in healthy adults
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Kopiske, Karl K
Prospective Memory can be defined as “remembering to carry out intended actions at an appropriate point in the future” (McDaniels & Einstein, 2007). Prospective Memory tasks have been shown to be susceptible to interference with Working Memory tasks (Benuzzi, Basso & Nichelli, 2005), indicating Working Memory involvement in their execution. Following up on evidence of Phonological Loop involvement (Law, Logie & Pearson, 2006), this study aims to determine if the Working Memory involvement is restricted to verbal Working Memory, or if visuo-spatial memory content would demand resources of the visuo-spatial sketchpad (Baddeley & Logie, 1999). N=19 participants completed the Edinburgh Virtual Errands Task (EVET) with measures of Prospective Memory performance being collected, while being presented with either a visuo-spatial or nonsense Working Memory task, Brooks’ (1967) Matrix Path Test (MPT). Contrary to my original hypotheses, analysis showed no significant difference in performance change in EVET performance, as well as MPT performance between the visuo-spatial group and the nonsense group, although there was a trend to be observed in the data towards a larger impairment in spatial groups.