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Individual differences in working memory capacity predict benefits to memory from intention offloading

Ball, H; Peper, P; Alakbarova, D; Brewer, G; Gilbert, SJ; (2021) Individual differences in working memory capacity predict benefits to memory from intention offloading. Memory 10.1080/09658211.2021.1991380. (In press).

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Abstract

Research suggests that individuals with lower working memory have difficulty remembering to fulfil delayed intentions. The current study examined whether the ability to offload intentions onto the environment mitigated these deficits. Participants (N = 268) completed three versions of a delayed intention task with and without the use of reminders, along with three measures of working memory capacity. Results showed that individuals with higher working memory fulfilled more intentions when having to rely on their own memory, but this difference was eliminated when offloading was permitted. Individuals with lower working memory chose to offload more often, suggesting that they were less willing to engage in effortful maintenance of internal representations when given the option. Working memory was not associated with metacognitive confidence or optimal offloading choices based on point value. These findings suggest offloading may help circumvent capacity limitations associated with maintaining and remembering delayed intentions.

Type: Article
Title: Individual differences in working memory capacity predict benefits to memory from intention offloading
DOI: 10.1080/09658211.2021.1991380
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/09658211.2021.1991380
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, offloading, reminders, working memory, individual differences, DELAYED INTENTIONS, COMPENSATORY ROLE, AGE-DIFFERENCES, TERM-MEMORY, TASK, ATTENTION, REMINDERS, METACOGNITION, PERFORMANCE, AVOIDANCE
UCL classification: UCL
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/10138172
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