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Engaging in a period of rest following encoding has been shown to lead to better retention on a subsequent recall test than performing an inter-test task. Brain imaging studies have shown that there is reactivation during post-encoding rest of brain areas that were active during initial encoding, and this process has been attributed to memory consolidation, leading to the improvements in recall. The present study investigated the conscious thoughts that occur during wakeful rest following encoding and how they relate to memory on a delayed recall test. Recall was tested in younger adults across two tests separated by a rest period while verbalizing conscious thoughts or engaging in a visuospatial task while verbalizing thoughts. Experiment 1 demonstrated hypermnesia, an increase in recall over repeated testing, for the rest but not task condition and demonstrated a relationship between recall improvement and the amount of replay during the delay. Experiment 2 aimed to replicate the findings of Experiment 1 and further explored the role of conscious replay in relational processing.
A Thesis submitted to the Department of Psychology in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science.
Includes bibliographical references.
Colleen M. Kelley, Professor Directing Thesis; Arielle Ann Borovsky, Committee Member; Walter R. Boot, Committee Member.
Florida State University
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