Emotion Processing Effects on Interference Resolution in Working Memory

Sara M. Levens, Elizabeth A. Phelps

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The interaction between emotion and working memory maintenance, load, and performance has been investigated with mixed results. The effect of emotion on specific executive processes such as interference resolution, however, remains relatively unexplored. In this series of studies, we examine how emotion affects interference resolution processes within working memory by modifying the Recency-probes paradigm (Monsel, 1978) to include emotional and neutral stimuli. Reaction time differences were compared between interference and non-interference trials for neutral and emotional words (Studies 1 & 3) and pictures (Study 2). Our results indicate that trials using emotional stimuli show a relative decrease in interference compared with trials using neutral stimuli, suggesting facilitation of interference resolution in the former. Furthermore, both valence and arousal seem to interact to produce this facilitation effect. These findings suggest that emotion facilitates response selection amid interference in working memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-280
Number of pages14
JournalEmotion
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2008

Fingerprint

Short-Term Memory
Emotions
Arousal
Reaction Time
Maintenance

Keywords

  • emotion
  • interference resolution
  • working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Emotion Processing Effects on Interference Resolution in Working Memory. / Levens, Sara M.; Phelps, Elizabeth A.

In: Emotion, Vol. 8, No. 2, 04.2008, p. 267-280.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{323842b1917a4e0d862b83cc6cd061e9,
title = "Emotion Processing Effects on Interference Resolution in Working Memory",
abstract = "The interaction between emotion and working memory maintenance, load, and performance has been investigated with mixed results. The effect of emotion on specific executive processes such as interference resolution, however, remains relatively unexplored. In this series of studies, we examine how emotion affects interference resolution processes within working memory by modifying the Recency-probes paradigm (Monsel, 1978) to include emotional and neutral stimuli. Reaction time differences were compared between interference and non-interference trials for neutral and emotional words (Studies 1 & 3) and pictures (Study 2). Our results indicate that trials using emotional stimuli show a relative decrease in interference compared with trials using neutral stimuli, suggesting facilitation of interference resolution in the former. Furthermore, both valence and arousal seem to interact to produce this facilitation effect. These findings suggest that emotion facilitates response selection amid interference in working memory.",
keywords = "emotion, interference resolution, working memory",
author = "Levens, {Sara M.} and Phelps, {Elizabeth A.}",
year = "2008",
month = "4",
doi = "10.1037/1528-3542.8.2.267",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "8",
pages = "267--280",
journal = "Emotion",
issn = "1528-3542",
publisher = "American Psychological Association Inc.",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Emotion Processing Effects on Interference Resolution in Working Memory

AU - Levens, Sara M.

AU - Phelps, Elizabeth A.

PY - 2008/4

Y1 - 2008/4

N2 - The interaction between emotion and working memory maintenance, load, and performance has been investigated with mixed results. The effect of emotion on specific executive processes such as interference resolution, however, remains relatively unexplored. In this series of studies, we examine how emotion affects interference resolution processes within working memory by modifying the Recency-probes paradigm (Monsel, 1978) to include emotional and neutral stimuli. Reaction time differences were compared between interference and non-interference trials for neutral and emotional words (Studies 1 & 3) and pictures (Study 2). Our results indicate that trials using emotional stimuli show a relative decrease in interference compared with trials using neutral stimuli, suggesting facilitation of interference resolution in the former. Furthermore, both valence and arousal seem to interact to produce this facilitation effect. These findings suggest that emotion facilitates response selection amid interference in working memory.

AB - The interaction between emotion and working memory maintenance, load, and performance has been investigated with mixed results. The effect of emotion on specific executive processes such as interference resolution, however, remains relatively unexplored. In this series of studies, we examine how emotion affects interference resolution processes within working memory by modifying the Recency-probes paradigm (Monsel, 1978) to include emotional and neutral stimuli. Reaction time differences were compared between interference and non-interference trials for neutral and emotional words (Studies 1 & 3) and pictures (Study 2). Our results indicate that trials using emotional stimuli show a relative decrease in interference compared with trials using neutral stimuli, suggesting facilitation of interference resolution in the former. Furthermore, both valence and arousal seem to interact to produce this facilitation effect. These findings suggest that emotion facilitates response selection amid interference in working memory.

KW - emotion

KW - interference resolution

KW - working memory

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=43549088580&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=43549088580&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1037/1528-3542.8.2.267

DO - 10.1037/1528-3542.8.2.267

M3 - Article

C2 - 18410200

AN - SCOPUS:43549088580

VL - 8

SP - 267

EP - 280

JO - Emotion

JF - Emotion

SN - 1528-3542

IS - 2

ER -