Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation

12-2012

Document Type

Senior Honors Thesis

Department (Legacy)

Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Author's Keywords

Handedness; Picture recognition; Abstract images; Memory

Abstract

Multiple previous studies agree that inconsistent handers exhibit a memory advantage over consistent handers, oftentimes in reference to inconsistents exhibiting lower false alarm rates. Two recent studies have found contrasting data, demonstrating that, compared to consistently handed individuals, inconsistently handed individuals exhibit a higher false alarm rate in recognition memory following the encoding of pictures of objects, regardless of whether lures are pictures or object names. From this research, it is unclear whether inconsistent individuals have difficulty remembering pictures of all types, or only pictures of objects. In the current study, participants studied pictures without focal objects (i.e., landscapes and fractals), then were tested on their recognition memory for those pictures. Inconsistent handers exhibited higher hit rates and lower false alarm rates for fractals when compared to consistent handers, while inconsistent handers also demonstrated higher corrected recognition, regardless of picture type, in comparison to consistent handers. These findings suggest that inconsistent handers display an advantage in the recognition of abstract images, while previous research has suggested inconsistent handers have a disadvantage in relation to object items.

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