Multiple Short-Term Storage: A Task to Evaluate the Coordination Function of the Executive Central

Abstract : We propose to explore more particularly one of the multiple aspects of working memory, the function of coordination of the central executive with a complex task, the double-stimuli task. This task requires the short-term maintenance of verbal information and of visuospatial information to be coordinated for the recall. The task is conceived in such way that one can ask either for the single recall of words, or for the single recall of locations, or for the recall of localized words. The double-stimuli task is studied using two methods, dual-task methodology (articulatory suppression, Moar box-tracking and standing balance position) and comparison with simple span tasks (word recall and location recall). For word recall and location recall in the double-stimuli task, we observe the classical interference effects: articulatory suppression impairs the performance on word recall without effect on location recall whereas with visuospatial interference tasks the reverse is true. A second analysis shows that when performance on the double-stimuli task (implying the maintenance of verbal material and visuospatial material at the same time) is compared with performances on short-term memory tasks (classical word span or location span using the same material), we observe a significant decrease in performance. In a third analysis a score specific to the complex task is calculated (corrected score) that takes into account the capacities of recall of words and locations. This score directly related to the capacities of coordination implied in the task is sensitive to the most attentional requirements of interference tasks. Contrary to what can be observed on the recall of locations, the standing balance position does not produce a significant decrease in performance. These results are consistent with an interpretation of the working memory according to which coordination of the subsystems is one of the functions of the central executive.
Document type :
Journal articles
Complete list of metadatas

Cited literature [48 references]  Display  Hide  Download
Contributor : Catherine Loisy <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, April 12, 2016 - 4:04:49 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, August 29, 2018 - 1:30:03 PM
Long-term archiving on : Wednesday, July 13, 2016 - 10:26:11 AM


Files produced by the author(s)


  • HAL Id : hal-00873466, version 1



Catherine Loisy, Jean-Luc Roulin. Multiple Short-Term Storage: A Task to Evaluate the Coordination Function of the Executive Central . International Journal of Psychology, Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2003, 38 (1), pp.1-10. ⟨⟩. ⟨hal-00873466⟩



Record views


Files downloads