A phonological short-term deficit: A case study
Martin, Randi C.
Master of Arts
The performance of a highly literate subject, BS, was assessed on tests of short-term memory. He demonstrated a pattern of performance similar to that of patients having a phonological short-term memory deficit. His profile included an exaggerated phonological similarity effect for auditorily, but not visually presented materials, the absence of a recency effect, a reversed modality effect, and difficulty repeating non-words. In contrast to previously described phonological short-term memory patients, BS performed fairly normally in a foreign language learning task, though his acquisition rate was slower than that of control subjects. This finding is counter to current theory which suggests intact phonological short-term memory is necessary to learning of new phonological forms. Further investigation of BS's deficit suggested that his areas of preserved performance were the result of strategic reliance upon semantic, lexical or orthographic factors. Thus support is demonstrated for theories of short-term memory that propose multiple components contributing to short-term memory.
Experimental psychology; Cognitive psychology