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The effects of rime on auditory recency and the suffix effect

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Two experiments are reported that consider the role of rime as the content of Precategorical Acoustic Storage (PAS). It was hypothesised that with auditory presentation of lists the rime component of the final item (the final vowel and, optionally, terminal consonant cluster of a word) was preserved in PAS and this served as a recall cue to identify the final item. Experiment 1 compared recall performance when the terminal or penultimate words rhymed with an irrelevant stimulus suffix. A suffix that shared a rime with the terminal word was found to attenuate the suffix effect, in line with Carr and Miles (1997) and consistent with the use of PAS as a positional code. However, contrary to the hypothesis that PAS information is automatically used to reconstruct the final item, the suffix effect was no greater when the suffix rhymed with the penultimate item than when no relationship existed between the suffix and the final item. Experiment 2 demonstrated that when the terminal and penultimate words shared a rime there was a drop in recall performance for the final item but a corresponding increase in correct recall of the penultimate item. No such changes were observed when the rime was shared between terminal and antepenultimate items. It is suggested that adjacency of identical rimes allows improved reconstruction of item information at the expense of order information.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 2000


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