Few studies have investigated how scheduling repeated studies of the same material over several days influences its subsequent retention. The study-phase retrieval hypothesis predicts that, under these circumstances, expanding intervals between repetitions will promote the greatest
likelihood that the participant will be reminded of previous occurrences of the item, thus leading to a benefit for subsequent recall. In the present article, participants studied vocabulary pairs that were repeated according to one of three schedules. In the expanding schedule, pairs were
presented on days 1, 2 and 13; in the uniform schedule, on days 1, 7 and 13; and in the contracting schedule, on days 1, 12 and 13. Cued-recall was assessed after a retention interval (RI) of 2, 6 or 13 days. Consistent with predictions, the expanding schedule generally led to better performance
than the other schedules. However, further analyses suggested that the benefit of an expanding schedule may be greater when the RI is longer.
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