Recollection is fast and easy: Pupillometric studies of face memory

Stephen Goldinger, Megan H. Papesh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In this chapter, we discuss several distinct conceptualizations of recognition memory, and their treatment of the (putative) processes underlying recollection and familiarity. We focus most closely on the concept of recollection, which many dual-process memory models assume to be a relatively slow, controlled process, during which contextual details from encoding are brought to mind (i.e., retrieval of episodic detail). We then introduce the use of pupillometry-continuously measuring pupil diameter during task performance-as an efficient means to estimate effortful cognitive processes during memory encoding and retrieval. We review evidence from three pupillometric. studies of face memory, providing evidence to suggest that recollection is not slow and effortful, as is often assumed, but is instead fast and easy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-222
Number of pages32
JournalPsychology of Learning and Motivation - Advances in Research and Theory
StatePublished - 2014


  • Continuous memory strength
  • Inclusion test
  • Own-race bias
  • Process distinction
  • Pupillometry
  • Recognition memory
  • Remember/know paradigm
  • Signal-detection theory
  • Task distinction
  • Threshold-based models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Psychology


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