Neural dynamics of attention switching and temporal-order information in short-term memory

Stephen Grossberg, Gregory Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


Reeves and Sperling (1986) have developed an experimental paradigm and a model to explain how attention switching influences the storage of temporal-order information in short-term memory (STM), or working memory. The present article suggests that attention switching influences initial storage of items in STM, but that competitive interactions among the STM representations of stored items control the further evolution of temporal-order information as new items are processed. The laws governing these competitive interactions, called the long-term memory (LTM) invariance principle and the STM normalization rule, were originally derived from postulates that ensure that STM is updated in a way that enables temporally stable list learning in LTM to occur. Despite these adaptive constraints, and often because of them, temporal-order information is not always stored veridically. Both feedforward and feedback STM processes, with different invariant properties, are identified in the storage of temporal-order information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)451-468
Number of pages18
JournalMemory & Cognition
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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