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Implicit Learning of Predictive Relationships in Three-Element Visual Sequences by Young and Old Adults

Implicit Learning of Predictive Relationships in Three-Element Visual Sequences by Young and Old Adults,10.1037/a0012797,Journal of Experimental Psych

Implicit Learning of Predictive Relationships in Three-Element Visual Sequences by Young and Old Adults   (Citations: 13)
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Knowledge of sequential relationships enables future events to be anticipated and processed efficiently. Research with the serial reaction time task (SRTT) has shown that sequence learning often occurs implicitly without effort or awareness. Here, the authors report 4 experiments that use a triplet-learning task (TLT) to investigate sequence learning in young and older adults. In the TLT, people respond only to the last target event in a series of discrete, 3-event sequences or triplets. Target predictability is manipulated by varying the triplet frequency (joint probability) and/or the statistical relationships (conditional probabilities) among events within the triplets. Results reveal that both groups learned, though older adults showed less learning of both joint and conditional probabilities. Young people used the statistical information in both cues, but older adults relied primarily on information in the 2nd cue alone. The authors conclude that the TLT complements and extends the SRTT and other tasks by offering flexibility in the kinds of sequential statistical regularities that may be studied as well as by controlling event timing and eliminating motor response sequencing.
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    • ...This finding is particularly true for probabilistic tasks, in which older adults' learning asymptotes while younger adults continue to learn (Simon, Howard, & Howard, 2011; Howard, Howard, Dennis, & Kelly, 2008; Bennett, Howard, & Howard, 2007; Ciomek, Song, Howard, & Howard, 2007; Howard & Howard, 1997)...

    Jessica R. Simonet al. The Effects of Aging on the Neural Basis of Implicit Associative Learn...

    • ... The most important aspect of this study however, is that it goes beyond the classification of sentence processing as a procedural process. Sequence-specific learning in the ASRT task is based on unconscious detection of the conditional probabilities within the stimulus sequence as reflected in the high- and low-frequency triplets ...

    Dezso Nemethet al. Interference between Sentence Processing and Probabilistic Implicit Se...

    • ...This finding is particularly true for probabilistic tasks, in which older adultsʼ learning asymptotes while younger adults continue to learn (Simon, Howard, & Howard, 2011; Howard, Howard, Dennis, & Kelly, 2008; Bennett, Howard, & Howard, 2007; Ciomek, Song, Howard, & Howard, 2007; Howard & Howard, 1997).,Here, we used the Triplets Learning Task (TLT; Howard et al., 2008), which uses event timing that is more conducive to learningand providesample trainingto examinethe time course of behavioral learning and brain activations in younger and older adults.,Importantly, studies using this task have shown that both age groups learn equally well early in training but that age deficits appear over time (Simon, Howard, et al., 2011; Howard et al., 2008).,In fact, people reveal such learning with practice by faster responses on more predictable trials despite having no explicit knowledge of the embedded regularities, even after 3 hr of training (Howard et al., 2008).,This decision was based on earlier evidence that neither younger nor older adults develop explicit knowledge in the TLT with more training than in the present study (Bennett, Romano, Howard, & Howard, 2008; Howard et al., 2008).,The TLT was a shortened and simplified version from that reported in Howard et al. (2008).,Younger and older adults both demonstrated learning of probabilistic associations in the TLT (i.e., faster responses to triplet events that occur more often), but age differences in learning emerged with practice in favor of the younger adults despite no changes in task demands (Simon, Howard, et al., 2011; Howard et al., 2008).,Despite having responded faster to HP than LP triplets during training, younger adults in the separate behavioral study were unable to discriminate between triplet frequencies in a postexperimental recognition task, consistent with work that had trainedyounger andolder participants on up to 6000 trials (Simon, Howard, et al., 2011; Bennett et al., 2008; Howard et al., 2008).,First, as stated above, learning in the TLT has consistently been reported to be implicit for both younger and older adults, even with extended training (Simon, Howard, et al., 2011; Bennett et al., 2008; Howard et al., 2008)...

    Jessica R. Simonet al. The Effects of Aging on the Neural Basis of Implicit Associative Learn...

    • ...Howard, Howard, Dennis and Kelly (2008) also adapted the visual SRT to manipulate the types of statistics governing triplet structures; and Remillard (2008) controlled nth-order adjacent and nonadjacent conditional information to probe SRT learning for visuospatial targets...

    Jennifer B. Misyaket al. Statistical Learning of Nonadjacencies Predicts On-line Processing of ...

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