Journal article

Do goal cue and motor activity impact preschoolers’ working memory?

Published in:
  • British Journal of Developmental Psychology. - 2021, p. 1-16
English Preschoolers are well known for their poor working memory (WM) performance. This could result from goal neglect, which would hamper the setting of maintenance strategies. Previous studies have shown that preschoolers’ WM performance can be improved in game-like tasks, because they provide cues to support goal maintenance. However, in these studies, it was unclear what features of the task (either the main toy or the motor activity required by the game) provide efficient cues. The aim of the present study was to disentangle the two features to examine cue effects in 5- to 7-year-old children. No improvement of WM performance was observed when the toy was a potential goal cue, whereas the motor activity had a detrimental effect in all age groups. The latter effect could result from a distraction of attention from attention-based maintenance activities. Hence, preschoolers’ poor WM performance would not be fundamentally due to goal neglect.
Faculté des lettres et des sciences humaines
Département de Psychologie
  • English
Memory and learning
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