Advertisement

Journal of Cognitive Enhancement

, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp 419–433 | Cite as

Training Change Detection Leads to Substantial Task-Specific Improvement

  • Martin BuschkuehlEmail author
  • Susanne M. Jaeggi
  • Shane T. Mueller
  • Priti Shah
  • John Jonides
Original Article

Abstract

Previous research has demonstrated that adaptive training of working memory can substantially increase performance on the trained task. Such training effects have been reported for performance on simple span tasks, complex span tasks, and n-back tasks. Another task that has become a popular vehicle for studying working memory is the change-detection paradigm. In a typical change-detection trial, one has to determine whether a set of stimuli is identical to a set that was presented just previously. Here, we developed an adaptive training regimen comprised of increasingly difficult change-detection trials to assess the degree to which individuals’ change-detection performance can be improved with practice. In contrast to previous work, our results demonstrate that participants are able to dramatically improve their performance in change detection over the course of 10 training sessions. We attribute this improvement to the current training method that adaptively adjusted the set size of the change-detection task to the proficiency of the trainee. Despite these considerable training effects, an exploratory investigation revealed that these improvements remained highly task specific and may not generalize to untrained tasks.

Keywords

Working memory Visual array comparison Practice 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Nelson Cowan for comments on the initial results of this experiment.

Funding Information

This work was supported by the Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-09-0213 and the Institute of Education Sciences Grant R324A090164

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

SMJ has an indirect financial interest in the MIND Research Institute. MB is employed at MIND Research Institute whose interest is related to this work.

References

  1. Ackerman, P. L. (1987). Individual differences in skill learning: an integration of psychometric and information processing perspectives. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 102(1), 3–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Agostinelli, C., & Lund, U. (2013). R package “circular”: Circular Statistics (Version 0.4–7). Retrieved from https://r-forge.r-project.org/projects/circular/
  3. Au, J., Katz, B., Buschkuehl, M., Bunarjo, K., Senger, T., Zabel, C., et al. (2016). Enhancing working memory training with transcranial direct current stimulation. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 28(9), 1419–1432.  https://doi.org/10.1162/jocn_a_00979.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Ball, K., Berch, D. B., Helmers, K. F., Jobe, J. B., Leveck, M. D., Marsiske, M., et al. (2002). Effects of cognitive training interventions with older adults: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 288(18), 2271–2281.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Benjamini, Y., & Hochberg, Y. (1995). Controlling the false discovery rate: a practical and powerful approach to multiple testing. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series B (Methodological), 57(1), 289–300.Google Scholar
  6. Bjork, E. L., & Bjork, R. A. (2014). Making things hard on yourself, but in a good way: creating desirable difficulties to enhance learning. In Psychology and the real world: Essays illustrating fundamental contributions to society (2nd ed., pp. 59–68). New York (NY, USA): Worth.Google Scholar
  7. Boduroglu, A., & Shah, P. (2009). Effects of spatial configurations on visual change detection: an account of bias changes. Memory & Cognition, 37(8), 1120–1131.  https://doi.org/10.3758/MC.37.8.1120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Boduroglu, A., Mueller, S., Ng, A., & Shah, P. (submitted). Representation resolution is correlated with short-term memory capacity.Google Scholar
  9. Bors, D. A., & Vigneau, F. (2001). The effect of practice on Raven’s advanced progressive matrices. Learning and Individual Differences, 13(4), 291–312.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S1041-6080(03)00015-3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Chein, J. M., & Morrison, A. B. (2010). Expanding the mind’s workspace: training and transfer effects with a complex working memory span task. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17(2), 193–199.  https://doi.org/10.3758/PBR.17.2.193.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Conway, A. R., Kane, M. J., Bunting, M. F., Hambrick, D. Z., Wilhelm, O., & Engle, R. W. (2005). Working memory span tasks: a methodological review and user’s guide. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 12(5), 769–786.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Cowan, N. (2001). The magical number 4 in short-term memory: a reconsideration of mental storage capacity. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 24, 87–185.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Cowan, N., Elliot, E. M., Saults, J. S., Morey, C. C., Mattox, S., Hismjatullina, A., & Conway, A. R. A. (2005). On the capacity of attention: its estimation and its role in working memory and cognitive aptitudes. Cognitive Psychology, 51, 42–100.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  14. Cowan, N., Fristoe, N. M., Elliott, E. M., Brunner, R. P., & Saults, J. S. (2006). Scope of attention, control of attention, and intelligence in children and adults. Memory & Cognition, 34(8), 1754–1768.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Dempster, A. P., Laird, N. M., & Rubin, D. B. (1977). Maximum likelihood from incomplete data via the EM algorithm. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series B, 39(1), 1–38.Google Scholar
  16. Deveau, J., Ozer, D. J., & Seitz, A. R. (2014). Improved vision and on-field performance in baseball through perceptual learning. Current Biology, 24(4), R146–R147.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  17. Dosher, B. A., Jeter, P., Liu, J., & Lu, Z.-L. (2013). An integrated reweighting theory of perceptual learning. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110(33), 13678–13683.  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1312552110.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  18. Eng, H. Y., Chen, D., & Jiang, Y. (2005). Visual working memory for simple and complex visual stimuli. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 12(6), 1127–1133.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ericsson, K. A., Chase, W. G., & Faloon, S. (1980). Acquisition of a memory skill. Science, 208, 1181–1182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fahle, M., & Morgan, M. (1996). No transfer of perceptual learning between similar stimuli in the same retinal position. Current Biology: CB, 6(3), 292–297.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Fukuda, K., Awh, E., & Vogel, E. K. (2010a). Discrete capacity limits in visual working memory. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 20(2), 177–182.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conb.2010.03.005.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  22. Fukuda, K., Vogel, E., Mayr, U., & Awh, E. (2010b). Quantity, not quality: the relationship between fluid intelligence and working memory capacity. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17(5), 673–679.  https://doi.org/10.3758/17.5.673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Gaspar, J. G., Neider, M. B., Simons, D. J., McCarley, J. S., & Kramer, A. F. (2013). Change detection: training and transfer. PLoS One, 8(6), e67781.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0067781.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  24. Jaeggi, S. M., Seewer, R., Nirkko, A. C., Eckstein, D., Schroth, G., Groner, R., & Gutbrod, K. (2003). Does excessive memory load attenuate activation in the prefrontal cortex? Load-dependent processing in single and dual tasks: functional magnetic resonance imaging study. NeuroImage, 19(2 Pt 1), 210–225.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Jaeggi, S. M., Buschkuehl, M., Jonides, J., & Perrig, W. J. (2008). Improving fluid intelligence with training on working memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(19), 6829–6833.  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0801268105.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  26. Jaeggi, S. M., Buschkuehl, M., Shah, P., & Jonides, J. (2014). The role of individual differences in cognitive training and transfer. Memory & Cognition, 42(3), 464–480.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13421-013-0364-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. JASP Team. (2017). JASP (Version 0.8.2). https://jasp-stats.org/faq/how-do-i-cite-jasp/.
  28. Johnson, M. K., McMahon, R. P., Robinson, B. M., Harvey, A. N., Hahn, B., Leonard, C. J., et al. (2013). The relationship between working memory capacity and broad measures of cognitive ability in healthy adults and people with schizophrenia. Neuropsychology, 27(2), 220–229.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0032060.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  29. Karbach, J., & Verhaeghen, P. (2014). Making working memory work: a meta-analysis of executive control and working memory training in younger and older adults. Psychological Science, 25(11), 2027–2037.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797614548725.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  30. Klingberg, T., Fernell, E., Olesen, P. J., Johnson, M., Gustafsson, P., Dahlström, K., et al. (2005). Computerized training of working memory in children with ADHD—a randomized, controlled trial. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 44(2), 177–186.  https://doi.org/10.1097/00004583-200502000-00010.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kundu, B., Sutterer, D. W., Emrich, S. M., & Postle, B. R. (2013). Strengthened effective connectivity underlies transfer of working memory training to tests of short-term memory and attention. The Journal of Neuroscience, 33(20), 8705–8715.  https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5565-12.2013.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  32. Kuo, C.-C., Zhang, C., Rissman, R. A., & Chiu, A. W. L. (2014). Long-term electrophysiological and behavioral analysis on the improvement of visual working memory load, training gains, and transfer benefits. Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science, 04(05), 234–246.  https://doi.org/10.4236/jbbs.2014.45025.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Lin, P.-H., & Luck, S. J. (2012). Proactive interference does not meaningfully distort visual working memory capacity estimates in the canonical change detection task. Frontiers in Psychology, 3, 42.  https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2012.00042.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  34. Morrison, A. B., & Chein, J. M. (2011). Does working memory training work? The promise and challenges of enhancing cognition by training working memory. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 18(1), 46–60.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13423-010-0034-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Oberauer, K. (2005). The measurement of working memory capacity. In O. Wilhelm & R. W. Engle (Eds.), Handbook of understanding and measuring intelligence (pp. 393–407). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Olson, I. R., & Jiang, Y. (2004). Visual short-term memory is not improved by training. Memory & Cognition, 32(8), 1326–1332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Olson, I. R., Jiang, Y., & Sledge Moore, K. S. (2005). Associative learning improves visual working memory performance. Journal of Experimental Psychology Human Perception and Performance, 31(5), 889–900.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0096-1523.31.5.889.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Owens, M., Koster, E. H. W., & Derakshan, N. (2013). Improving attention control in dysphoria through cognitive training: transfer effects on working memory capacity and filtering efficiency. Psychophysiology, 50(3), 297–307.  https://doi.org/10.1111/psyp.12010.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Phillips, W. A. (1974). On the distinction between sensory storage and short-term visual memory. Perception & Psychophysics, 16(2), 283–290.  https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03203943.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. R Core Team. (2013). R: a language and environment for statistical computing. Vienna (Austria): R Foundation for Statistical Computing Retrieved from http://www.R-project.org/.Google Scholar
  41. Redick, T. S., Broadway, J. M., Meier, M. E., Kuriakose, P. S., Unsworth, N., Kane, M. J., & Engle, R. W. (2012). Measuring working memory capacity with automated complex span tasks. European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 28(3), 164–171.  https://doi.org/10.1027/1015-5759/a000123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Rouder, J. N., Morey, R. D., Cowan, N., Zwilling, C. E., Morey, C. C., & Pratte, M. S. (2008). An assessment of fixed-capacity models of visual working memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(16), 5975–5979.  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0711295105.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  43. Schellig, D. (1997). Block-tapping test. Frankfurt am Main: Swets Tests Services.Google Scholar
  44. Schwarb, H., Nail, J., & Schumacher, E. H. (2016). Working memory training improves visual short-term memory capacity. Psychological Research, 80(1), 128–148.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-015-0648-y.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. Shute, V. J. (2008). Focus on formative feedback. Review of Educational Research, 78(1), 153–189.  https://doi.org/10.3102/0034654307313795.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Sligte, I. G., Scholte, H. S., & Lamme, V. A. F. (2008). Are there multiple visual short-term memory stores? PLoS One, 3(2), e1699.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0001699.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  47. Soveri, A., Antfolk, J., Karlsson, L., Salo, B., & Laine, M. (2017). Working memory training revisited: a multi-level meta-analysis of n-back training studies. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 24(4), 1077–1096.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13423-016-1217-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Sperling, G. (1960). The information available in brief visual presentations. Psychological Monographs: General and Applied, 74(11), 1–29.  https://doi.org/10.1037/h0093759.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Sungur, H., & Boduroglu, A. (2012). Action video game players form more detailed representation of objects. Acta Psychologica, 139(2), 327–334.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.actpsy.2011.12.002.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. te Nijenhuis, J., van Vianen, A. E. M., & van der Flier, H. (2007). Score gains on g-loaded tests: no g. Intelligence, 35(3), 283–300.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intell.2006.07.006.
  51. Weicker, J., Villringer, A., & Thöne-Otto, A. (2016). Can impaired working memory functioning be improved by training? A meta-analysis with a special focus on brain injured patients. Neuropsychology, 30(2), 190–212.  https://doi.org/10.1037/neu0000227.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  52. Wheeler, M. E., & Treisman, A. M. (2002). Binding in short-term visual memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology General, 131(1), 48–64.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. Whipple, G. M. (1910). The effect of practise upon the range of visual attention and of visual apprehension. The Journal of Educational Psychology, 1(5), 249–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Xu, Z., Adam, K. C. S., Fang, X., & Vogel, E. K. (2017). The reliability and stability of visual working memory capacity. Behavior Research Methods.  https://doi.org/10.3758/s13428-017-0886-6.
  55. Zhang, W., & Luck, S. J. (2008). Discrete fixed-resolution representations in visual working memory. Nature, 453(7192), 233–235.  https://doi.org/10.1038/nature06860.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  56. Zhang, W., & Luck, S. J. (2011). The number and quality of representations in working memory. Psychological Science, 22(11), 1434–1441.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611417006.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  57. Zimmer, H. D., Popp, C., Reith, W., & Krick, C. (2012). Gains of item-specific training in visual working memory and their neural correlates. Brain Research, 1466, 44–55.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2012.05.019.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Buschkuehl
    • 1
    Email author
  • Susanne M. Jaeggi
    • 2
  • Shane T. Mueller
    • 3
  • Priti Shah
    • 4
  • John Jonides
    • 4
  1. 1.MIND Research InstituteIrvineUSA
  2. 2.School of EducationUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA
  3. 3.Department of Cognitive and Learning SciencesMichigan Technological UniversityHoughtonUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychologyUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

Personalised recommendations