The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of two sub-components of visuospatial short-term memory on language comprehension. Specifically, the visual short-term store (the capacity of one's short-term memory for visual items such as color, size, number, and shape referents) and the spatial short-term store (the capacity of one's short-term memory for spatial items such as location, spatial relations, and sequencing) were studied for an association with language comprehension at the paragraph level. Research has determined that both visual and spatial short-term memory components assist listeners in generating and maintaining images and that these images may enhance one's ability to comprehend language that is designed with a strong visual or spatial focus. As a result, the paragraphs used in the comprehension task were designed with a strong visual focus and a strong spatial focus. Also included in the comprehension task were two paragraphs designed to be void of visual and spatial referents. Each participant performed a visual short-term memory task (capacity of visual short-term memory), a spatial short-term memory task (capacity of spatial short-term memory), and a comprehension task. The comprehension task required participants to listen to visual, spatial, and control content paragraphs then answer questions about each paragraph. For those paragraphs designed to evoke visual imagery, it was predicted children would demonstrate greater use of visual short-term memory than spatial short-term memory, and for those paragraphs designed to evoke spatial imagery, it was predicted children would demonstrate greater use of spatial short-term memory than visual short-term memory. Results indicate a significant involvement of both visual and spatial short-term memory in comprehension of spatially oriented paragraphs but no significant difference in the magnitude of the correlations was observed. In addition, no involvement of visual or spatial short-term memory in comprehension of visually oriented paragraphs was observed. Discussion addresses lexical content as well as paragraph construction methods.It is reasonable to believe that children are also capable of comprehending paragraph level material. Developmentally ... In language arts, children in the first grade are expected to be able to recall the important ideas in fictional and nonfictional texts; and by the tenth grade students should be able to answer a variety of specific questions to demonstrate comprehension of grade-appropriate stories.
|Title||:||Visuospatial Short-term Memory and Language Comprehension: Investigating the Interaction in Typically Developing Children|
|Author||:||Michelle H. O'Malley|
|Publisher||:||ProQuest - 2008|