The use of a rehearsal strategy by 10-, 12-, and 14-year-old mildly mentally retarded children and adolescents was investigated using a self-paced recall readiness task. This task, in contrast to those typically used to study rehearsal by retarded individuals, allowed subjects to study items in any order as many times as desired. Each age group used rehearsal, as indicated by increasing study time patterns and the number of repetitions per item. We suggest that previous studies have failed to detect rehearsal by retarded persons because the tasks used have constrained the range of possible types of study behavior. The implication of this finding for rehearsal deficit theories was discussed.