SERIAL ORDER IN RECOGNITION AND RECALL.
MCGILL UNIV MONTREAL (QUEBEC) DEPT OF PSYCHOLOGY
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Two experiments are reported in which Ss viewed 100 series of 5 digits, each followed by a 6th critical digit. They were required to indicate as quickly as possible by pressing 1 of 2 buttons whether or not the critical digit has appeared in the series. In Experiment I 20 Ss presentation rate was varied. In Experiment II 10 Ss there were 3 recall trials as well as the 100 recognition trials but S did not know whether he was to recall the 5 digits or make a recognition response until after the digits had been presented. In both experiments recognition times showed a strong recency effect, i.e., faster recognition times the later the critical digit occurred in the series, while in the recall trials in Experiment II Ss generally reported the digits in the forward order. These results are interpreted to mean that the forward ordering in recall is a feature of the recall process itself rather than of storage, and that in recognition S has direct access to relevant elements of a serial trace without first having to scan irrelevant ones. A theory of account for serial order in recall is proposed. Author