They constructed a clever experiment which showed how we link together related ideas into an integrated whole. After they heard and answered 24 sentences, there was a five minute delay, and subjects were then presented with a second list of sentences. In addition to rating the sentence as new or old, they also assigned confidence values which stated how sure the subject was of their response. Propositional complexity in the first list varied from 1 to 3.
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The participants were given a set of short sentences that expressed simple concepts. Then they were asked to identify which of the sentences they had seen before. They identified the long sentences composed of the short sentences they had seen more readily than the short sentences themselves.
This suggests that participants automatically integrate concepts they see into schemas that integrate the concepts. Curnow, P. Integration of linguistic materials. Unpublished Ph. Dissertation, University of Minnesota, Johnson, N. The psychological reality of phrase-structure rules. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, , 4, Kolers, P. Interlingual facilitation of short-term memory. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, , 5, Mehler, J. Some effects of grammatical transformations on the recall of English sentences.
Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, , 2, Sachs, J. Recognition memory for syntactic and semantic aspects of connected discourse.
Perception and Psychophysics, , 2, Savin, H. Grammatical structure and the immediate recall of English sentences. Cognitive Psychology 2 , Cambridge: Cambridge. Press, Results indicate that during an acquisition phase of the experiments, Ss spontaneously integrate the information expressed by a number of non-consecutively experienced but semantically related sentences into wholistic, semantic ideas, where these ideas encompass more information than any acquisition sentence contained.
Ss' subsequent attempts to recognize those exact sentences heard during acquisition are shown to be a function of the complete ideas acquired. Thus, Ss are most confident of "recognizing" sentences expressing all the semantic relations characteristic of a complete idea, in spite of the fact that such sentences expressed more information than was communicated by any single sentence on the acquisition list.
Ss become less confident of having heard particular sentences as a function of the degree to which a sentence fails to exhaust all the semantic relations characteristic of a complete idea.
Bransford, J. Bartlett, F. The phenomenon of "idea acquisition and retention" is demonstrated experimentally and contrasted with an "individual sentence memory" point of view. Alphabetical List Categorical List.
A replication of Bransford and Franks’ (1971) “The abstraction of linguistic ideas”
Test: Ss heard 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-fact sentences most of which were never presented and noncase sentences. Results: the more facts in the sentences, the more likely Ss would judge them as old and with higher confidence. Constructive Model: we integrate info from individual sentences in order to construct larger ideas; emphasizes the active nature of our cognitive processes. Speed Estimate smashed. Definition of Schema: generalized knowledge about situations and events schemas guide our recognition and understanding of new information by providing expectations about what should occur Scripts a type of schema : simple, well-structured sequence of events of a highly familiar activity How do Schemas Operate? Acquisition: Ss heard 1-, 2-, and 3-fact sentences only Test: Ss heard 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-fact sentences most of which were never presented and noncase sentences Results: the more facts in the sentences, the more likely Ss would judge them as old and with higher confidence why were Ss consistently more likely to believe they heard the whole story -- which they had not -- than the simpler sentences -- which they had heard?