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The effect of recent reminder setting on subsequent strategy and performance in a prospective memory task

Scarampi, C; Gilbert, SJ; (2020) The effect of recent reminder setting on subsequent strategy and performance in a prospective memory task. Memory , 28 (5) pp. 677-691. 10.1080/09658211.2020.1764974.

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Abstract

The technological advancement that is rapidly taking place in today’s society allows increased opportunity for “cognitive offloading” by storing information in external devices rather than relying on internal memory. This opens the way to fundamental questions regarding the interplay between internal and external memory and the potential benefits and costs of placing information in the external environment. This article reports the results of three pre-registered online experiments investigating the consequences of prior cognitive offloading on A) subsequent unaided ability, and B) strategic decisions whether to engage in future cognitive offloading. We administered a web-based task requiring participants to remember delayed intentions for a brief period and manipulated the possibility of setting reminders to create an external cue. Earlier cognitive offloading had little effect upon individuals’ subsequent unaided ability, leading to a small and nonsignificant drop in subsequent performance. However, there was a strong effect on participants’ subsequent likelihood of setting reminders. These findings suggest that the short-term impact of cognitive offloading is more likely to be seen on individuals’ strategy choices rather than basic memory processes.

Type: Article
Title: The effect of recent reminder setting on subsequent strategy and performance in a prospective memory task
DOI: 10.1080/09658211.2020.1764974
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/09658211.2020.1764974
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Social Sciences, Psychology, Experimental, Psychology, Prospective memory, cognitive offloading, technology, reminders, delayed intentions, strategy use, EGO-DEPLETION, REPLICATION
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10100226
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