Lingering effects of inattention on the recognition of novel forms

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1 Scopus citations


Two experiments are reported in which participants were instructed to attend to one of two overlapping figures and report how distinctive it was (Experiment 1), or how angular it was or what it resembled (Experiment 2). Tests of recognition memory indicated that recognition of the unattended figures was below chance, consistent with the conclusion that an implicit memory of the unattended figures and an "action tag" to not respond to the figures combine at recognition to suppress positive identification. Furthermore, participants that scored high on an index of working memory ability showed worse memory for the unattended shapes, suggesting that the ability to control attention not only enhances memory for attended items, but also leads to greater suppression of unattended distractors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)687-694
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 2009


  • Attention
  • Form perception
  • Implicit memory
  • Recognition
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)


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