Use of causal attributions about recall performance to assess metamemory and predict strategic memory behavior in young children

William V. Fabricius, John W. Hagen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

27 1st graders and 24 2nd graders were exposed to a memory task in which their recall performance varied as a function of their incidentally elicited sorting behavior. When asked what had affected their recall, only some Ss at each grade identified sorting as a causal factor, although all had used sorting. Attributions about sorting could not be accounted for by differential memory for sorting behavior or by differential use of sorting on previous trials. Causal attributions, but neither previous sorting nor nonattributional verbal reports about sorting behavior, predicted use of a sorting strategy in a standard, study-recall task 1 wk later. Ss who had attributed recall to sorting tended not to use rehearsal strategies on the subsequent task, suggesting that causal attributions reflected their views about what were the most important influences on recall. Ss' ability to assess their recall performance and their insight into possible mechanisms by which sorting affects recall are discussed as avenues for future research into how children acquire their ideas about factors that affect memory. (30 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)975-987
Number of pages13
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 1984
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • causal attributions about recall performance, assessment of metamemory & prediction of strategic memory behavior, 1st & 2nd graders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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