William J. Macken

Learn More
The phonological store construct of the working memory model is critically evaluated. Three experiments test the prediction that the effect of irrelevant sound and the effect of phonological similarity each survive the action of articulatory suppression but only when presentation of to-be-remembered lists is auditory, not visual. No evidence was found to(More)
Typically, hearing a repeated syllable produces minimal disruption of serial recall of visual lists, but a sequence of different syllables impairs performance markedly. Two conditions for presenting an identical sequence of three syllables are compared: one, in which, by means of stereophony, each syllable is assigned to the left, center, or right auditory(More)
Evidence for effects of changed environmental context on recognition has been equivocal. Using 3 experiments, the author investigated the role of environmental context from a dual-processing approach. Experiment 1 showed that testing word recognition in a novel context led to a reliable decrement but only for recognition accompanied by conscious(More)
The role of separating task-relevant from task-irrelevant aspects of the environment is typically assigned to the executive functioning of working memory. However, pervasive aspects of auditory distraction have been shown to be unrelated to working memory capacity in a range of studies of individual differences. We measured individual differences in global(More)
R. P. Carlyon, R. Cusack, J. M. Foxton, and I. H. Robertson (2001) have argued that attention is crucial for auditory streaming. The authors review R. P. Carlyon et al.'s (2001) arguments and suggest that a pertinent literature, the irrelevant sound paradigm--demonstrating preattentive auditory streaming--has been overlooked. In illustration of this(More)
Double agency theories of short-term memory posit the functional independence of a phonological store (inner ear) and articulatory process (inner voice). A series of 5 experiments challenges this view. Articulatory suppression during retention of 9-item lists gives rise to a changing-state effect similar to that shown for irrelevant speech. Also, vocalized(More)
Irrelevant sound tends to break through selective attention and impair cognitive performance. This observation has been brought under systematic scrutiny by laboratory studies measuring interference with memory performance during exposure to irrelevant sound. These studies established that the degree of interference depends on the properties of the(More)
Irrelevant sound consisting of bursts of broadband noise, in which centre frequency changes with each burst, markedly impaired short-term memory for order. In contrast, a sequence of irrelevant sound in which the same band-pass noise burst was repeated did not produce significant disruption. Serial recall for both visual-verbal (Experiment 1) and(More)
Classical cognitive accounts of verbal short-term memory (STM) invoke an abstract, phonological level of representation which, although it may be derived differently via different modalities, is itself amodal. Key evidence for this view is that serial recall of phonologically similar verbal items (e.g., the letter sounds b, c, g, and d) is worse than that(More)
Typically, serial recall performance can be disrupted by the presence of an irrelevant stream of background auditory stimulation, but only if the background stream changes over time (the auditory changing-state effect). It was hypothesized that segmentation of the auditory stream is necessary for changing state to be signified. In Experiment 1, continuous(More)