WoMAAC: Working Memory Across the Adult Lifespan: Adversarial Collaboration

  • Robert H Logie (Presenter)
  • Nelson Cowan (Contributor)
  • Valerie Camos (Contributor)
  • Pierre Barrouillet (Contributor)
  • Moshe Naveh-Benjamin (Contributor)
  • Jason M Doherty (Contributor)
  • Clement Belletier (Contributor)
  • Jaroslawska, A. (Contributor)
  • Stephen Rhodes (Contributor)
  • Alicia Forsberg (Contributor)

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation


WOMAAC is a four-year project that adopted the approach of “adversarial collaboration” (scientists who disagree working together) to test three different theoretical frameworks for working memory: multiple components, embedded processes, and time-based resource sharing. We addressed a common set of research questions, with parallel replications across labs. The focus was on the understanding of how participants perform when asked to hold items in memory while performing some other task compared with performing each task on its own, and how this ability changes across adult aging. This talk will describe the experience of undertaking this kind of project which has now formally ended and will present key experiments and outcomes. In sum, across multiple experiments, no one theory accounted for all of the data, requiring a change in theoretical assumptions, and an exploration of participant strategies demonstrated that participants often changed the way they performed each task under single and dual task conditions. Adversarial collaboration is proposed as an approach to resolving debates that self-perpetuate indefinitely.
Period20 Nov 2020
Event title61st Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society
Event typeConference