Contemporary Psychology, Vol. 14, No. 2, 2011, 201-211

Preliminary Communication

What Do We Test with Memory Tests?: The Relation of Metamemory and Objective Measures of Memory

Andrea Vranić - Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Zagreb
Mirjana Tonković - Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Zagreb

Fulltext (croatian, pages 201-211).pdf

Metamemory refers to our knowledge of memory functioning, of our mnemonic processes, as well as satisfaction with our own mnemonic system. Its assessment is a relatively new field in memory research, and in this paper we aimed at drawing attention to the importance of incorporating metamory assessment in the neuropsychological screening procedure. The relation of metamemory and other objective and subjective memory measures was investigated on a sample of 247 participants (aged 13-78). We used the Self-Evaluation of Memory Systems Questionnaire (SMSq – Tonkovic and Vranić, 2004; 2011), Memory Sensitivity Questionnaire (MS - Cornoldi, De Beni and Helstrup, 2007) and 4 memory tasks tapping the following memory systems: episodic, semantic, memory for numbers, memory for visuo-spatial information. In accordance to the literature we did not find high correlations of factors on SMSq and their respective memory tasks, the exception being the factor Memory for numbers which had a significant correlation with the memory task involving numbers. Also, we found a correlation of the episodic memory factor and MS. MS refers to the metamemorial characteristics of episodic memory, so this correlation was expected. Results are discussed in terms of the necessity of change in the validation procedure of memory self-assessment, where a delayed recall score is suggested to serve as a criterion variable. This would ensure for both type of measures to be based on a similar factor – the passage of time which undoubtedly affects the quality of our remembering, and renders a similar impact on the formation of the attitude toward our own memory.

metamemory, memory systems, assessment

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