Sleeping on it: Examining the Effects of Sleep Consolidation when Encoding is Interrupted.
Research indicates that memories are strengthened by consolidation, defined as their incorporation during sleep into a previously established memory network (Rasch & Born, 2008; Rasch & Born, 2013). Data indicate that memories are initially unstable after encoding and that sleep consolidation increases resistance to interference (Robertson, 2011). On the first day of a two-day experiment designed to examined whether interrupting the encoding of a memory would affect later memory consolidation, participants in the present research memorized pictures of common objects (e.g., owl, motorcycle) presented in a slideshow. At the midpoint of the slideshow, there was a simulated computer crash. While the experimenter pretended to amend the fake situation, participants completed an unrelated task to prevent rehearsal of the pictures. Shortly after, the slideshow resumed, presenting the remaining pictures. Participants were assigned to either complete an immediate recognition test of the pictures, return to lab the following day to complete a delayed recognition test, or complete both an immediate and a delayed recognition test. We tested three hypotheses; first, pictures that appeared near the beginning and the end of encoding, and those that appeared after the resumption of the interrupted slideshow would be better remembered than those pictures that appeared just before the interruption, due to primacy and recency memory effects. Second, pictures tested for memory only on the second day would be remembered better, due to sleep consolidation, than when tested for memory only on the first day. Third, participants tested on the first and second day would be more confident in their memory of the pictures, and, due to sleep consolidation and repetition, would recognize more pictures on the second than on the first day of testing.
Susan T Davis
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium poster
"Sleeping on it: Examining the Effects of Sleep Consolidation when Encoding is Interrupted." (2018). Stander Symposium Posters. 1341.