Doorways do not always cause forgetting: A multimodal investigation

Oliver Baumann*, Jessica McFadyen, Christopher Nolan, Ellen Pinocy, David Buteri

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The ‘doorway effect’, or ‘location updating effect’, claims that we tend to forget items of recent significance immediately after crossing a boundary.
Previous research suggests that such a forgetting effect occurs both at physical boundaries (e.g., moving from one room to another via a door) and metaphysical boundaries (e.g., imagining traversing a doorway, or even when moving from one desktop window to another on a computer). Here, we aimed to conceptually replicate this effect using virtual and physical environments. Across four experiments, we measured participants’ hit and false alarm rates to memory probes for items recently encountered either in the same or previous room. Experiments 1 and 2 used highly immersive virtual reality without and with working memory load (Experiments 1 and 2, respectively). Experiment 3 used passive video watching and Experiment 4 used active real-life movement. Across this series of experiments, we observed no significant effect of doorways on forgetting. In Experiment 2, however, signal detection was impaired when participants responded to probes after moving through doorways, such that false alarm rates were increased for
mismatched recognition probes. Thus, under working memory load, memory was more susceptible to interference after moving through doorways.
This study presents evidence that is inconsistent with the location updating effect as it has previously been reported. Our findings call into question the generalisability and robustness of this effect to slight paradigm alterations and, indeed, what factors contributed to the effect observed in previous studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages32-33
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021
EventThe Australasian Experimental Psychology Society Conference - Brisbane, Australia
Duration: 9 Apr 202111 Apr 2021
https://exp.psy.uq.edu.au/epc2021/

Conference

ConferenceThe Australasian Experimental Psychology Society Conference
Abbreviated titleEPC 2021
CountryAustralia
CityBrisbane
Period9/04/2111/04/21
Internet address

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Doorways do not always cause forgetting: A multimodal investigation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this