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Collaborative Learning and Remembering: Part I

Friday, May 28, 2010, 1:30 PM - 2:50 PM
Republic Ballroom B

Chair: William Hirst
New School for Social Research
Chair: Suparna Rajaram
Stony Brook University, State University of New York

In recent years, psychologists with different perspectives and expertise have sought to understand the role of social collaboration on memory. This symposium focuses on the processes and mechanisms of collaborative memory. The talks explore memorizing and remembering in small groups and the influence of collaboration on the subsequent individual memory.

Collaborative Inhibition and Facilitation in Memory for Categorical Word Lists
Ira E. Hyman
Western Washington University
Hyman, Cardwell and Roy will explore several factors that mediate the extent of collaborative inhibition. In addition, they examine how these same factors can affect the recall errors that might emerge during collaborative recall. Such collaborative memory errors are not the rule; in fact, collaboration prunes recall errors in some cases while increasing these errors in other cases. In the latter case where false memory errors increase, a social contagion effect is said to occur in memory performance. The ability to predict when social contagion occurs, and who might be particular susceptible to these errors, is critical for understanding both the mechanisms that underlying collaborative retrieval and the conditions under which collaboration should be avoided.

Brittany A. Cardwell, Western Washington University
Rebecca A. Roy, Western Washington University

Social Contagion of Memory in Young and Older Adults
Michelle L. Meade
Montana State University
Meade and Davis address these questions by experimentally examining the social contagion errors in memory in young and older adults. The effects of collaborative remembering on memory has also been examined in terms of motives, specifically, the motive to create a shared reality. Shared reality can occur in many ways where the communicating partners share the same views and evaluations, and these shared aspects shape memory for the content of their communication.

Sara D. Davis, Montana State University

Creating Shared Reality in Internet Communication: Conditions for Audience-Tuning Effects on Memory
Gerald Echterhoff
Jacobs University Bremen, Germany
In the third talk, Echterhoff, Kopietz, and Illies present data on the effects of such shared reality in situations where partners do not know or see each other, as in internet communication.

René Kopietz, University College London, United Kingdom
Dominik Illies, Bielefeld University, Germany

Analogical Comparison Supports Collaborative Learning in Physics
Timothy J. Nokes
University of Pittsburgh
Nokes and Gadgil offer ways of applying this research to group learning in classrooms. Drawing upon cognitive literature on learning processes (e.g., analogy) with ideas from the educational literature on successful collaboration (e.g., scripts), they present data on the types of instructional activities that facilitate collaborative learning in the classroom. These studies on the process of collaboration provide a window into our understanding of how collaboration affects people’s memory in daily life.

Soniya Gadgil, University of Pittsburgh

Suparna Rajaram (Discussant)
Stony Brook University, State University of New York

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