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Using a change-detection task to simulate divided perception and its effects on recognition memory for objects




Kostic, Bogdan, author
Cleary, Anne M., advisor
Clegg, Benjamin A., committee member
Sarenac, Darko, committee member
Volbrecht, Vicki J., committee member

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Déjà vu is defined as high levels of familiarity for objects or situations that are objectively unfamiliar. One theory of déjà vu is that objects viewed under conditions of divided perception can later evoke familiarity. The present study examined whether a change detection task could simulate divided perception and affect later recognition memory performance for changed items. Participants viewed a study list in which one version of a scene alternated once with another version of the same scene, but with one item absent. Participants attempted to determine the location of the change. On a subsequent test list, participants viewed items from the scenes in isolation and made recognition judgments on them. Across five experiments, this task was used to determine how detection status affected familiarity ratings, how stimulus characteristics affect familiarity ratings, and what recognition processes (i.e., recollection and familiarity) drive recognition decisions for undetected items. Overall, these experiments show that simulated conditions of divided perception do affect recognition memory, which is a first step towards investigating déjà vu directly.


2010 Summer.
Includes bibliographical references.

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déjà vu
Recognition (Psychology)
Distraction (Psychology)


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