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October 2021

Modality differences in short-term memory for rhythms

Author(s): Logan, G.

Journal/Book: Mem Cognit. 2000; 28: 529-38.

Abstract: Prior research has established that performance in short-term memory tasks using auditory rhythmic stimuli is frequently superior to that in tasks using visual stimuli. In five experiments, the reasons for this were explored further. In a same-different task, pairs of brief rhythms were presented in which each rhythm was visual or auditory, resulting in two same-modality conditions and two cross-modality conditions. Three different rates of presentation were used. The results supported the temporal advantage of the auditory modality in short-term memory, which was quite robust at the quickest presentation rates. This advantage tended to decay as the presentation rate was slowed down, consistent with the view that, with time, the temporal patterns were being recoded into a more generic form.

Keyword(s): Adult. Attention. Auditory Perception. Female. Human. Male. Memory, Short-Term. Music. Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.. Time Perception. Visual Perception

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