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Cognitive control of working memory but not familiarity in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

Authors
  • Brown, Emily Kathryn1
  • Hampton, Robert R2
  • 1 Department of Psychology and Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University, 36 Eagle Row, Atlanta, GA, 30322, USA. [email protected]
  • 2 Department of Psychology and Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University, 36 Eagle Row, Atlanta, GA, 30322, USA.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Learning & behavior
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2020
Volume
48
Issue
4
Pages
444–452
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3758/s13420-020-00432-7
PMID: 32638291
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Directed forgetting paradigms assess cognitive control by determining whether memory accuracy is superior in trials on which subjects were instructed to remember compared with accuracy in trials on which they were instructed to forget. We used a directed forgetting paradigm to compare the extent to which working memory and familiarity are subject to rehearsal-like cognitive control in rhesus monkeys. Monkeys studied a sample image, then saw one of two distinctive cues during a retention interval. The remember cue typically predicted a four-choice match to sample test, for which memory of the sample was critical. The forget cue typically predicted one of five perceptual discrimination tests, matched for accuracy to the memory tests, for which memory of the sample was irrelevant. On rare probe trials, the test type other than the type typically predicted by the cue was presented. When cognitive control of memory was possible, accuracy should have been higher on memory tests following the remember cue than on those following the forget cue. We found that accuracy was higher following the remember cue under conditions that favored working memory (small image set) but was not higher under conditions that favored matching on the basis of relative familiarity (large image set). Working memory, but not familiarity, is subject to cognitive control in rhesus monkeys.

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