Date of Thesis

2011

Thesis Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Neuroscience

First Advisor

Andrea Halpern

Keywords

Music, memory, metamemory

Abstract

Metamemory is an important skill that allows humans to monitor their own memory abilities; however, little research has concerned what perceptual information influences metamemory judgments. A series of experiments assessed the accuracy of metamemory judgments for music as well as determined if metamemory judgments are affected by ease of processing of musical features. A recognition memory task inconjunction with metamemory judgments (Judgments of Learning, or JOLs) were used to determine actual and predicted memory performance. We found that changing the ease of processing of the volume and timbre of unfamiliar tunes affected metamemory judgments, but not memory performance, for unfamiliar tunes. Manipulating the ease ofprocessing of the timbre and tempo of familiar tunes did not affect metamemory judgments or memory performance although metamemory accuracy on an item-by-item basis was better for familiar tunes as compared to unfamiliar tunes. Thus, metamemory judgments for unfamiliar tunes are more sensitive to ease of processing changes ascompared to familiar tunes, suggesting that different types of information are processed in different ways.

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