Working Memory Capacity and Familiarity With Testing Environment
Keywords:Cognitive Thinking, Memory, Standardized Testing, Working Memory Capacity, Familiarity With Testing Environment
Previous studies have shown converging evidence that negative perceptions of the surrounding environment lead to lower standardized test performance among stigmatized individuals. However, there has been minimal research done about the underlying cognitive mechanism that may account for these effects. I hypothesized that unfamiliarity with the surrounding environment interferes with test performance because it limits individuals’ working memory capacity. This within-subjects experiment, with a total of 35 Leland High School students, tested that hypothesis. A self-produced version of the working memory span task was given to all participants in both of their prospective classrooms, familiar and unfamiliar. Through a matched-paired t-test analysis, the results demonstrated that unfamiliarity with the surrounding environment significantly limited one’s working memory capacity. Implications for future studies are discussed.
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Copyright (c) 2020 Yu Yi Lu, Jonathan Jones, Rachel Booth
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