View More View Less
  • 1 University of Szeged Institute of Psychology Szeged Hungary
  • 2 Budapest University of Technology and Economics Department of Cognitive Science Budapest Hungary
  • 3 University Rennes 2 Rennes France
  • 4 GeoX Ltd. Budapest Hungary
  • 5 University of Szeged Department of English Language Teacher Education and Applied Linguistics Szeged Hungary
  • 6 Harvard Medical School Department of Radiology, Brigham Women Hospital Harvard USA
  • 7 Egyetem u. 2. H-6722 Szeged Hungary
Full access

The main purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between verbal short-term memory and the morphological complexity of words. Hungarian, as an agglutinative language, is of special interest for psycholinguistic inquiries in morphology. The authors presented two word-list recall experiments. The recall of the word list was measured by the classical span design. The item lists consisted of two-syllable stems (base words) and two-syllable morphologically complex words (stem+suffix). Within each list the words were of the same length, the same phonological structure (CVCVC), the same frequency and the same concreteness. The same experimental design was used with three-syllable words as well. Results indicated that morphological complexity had a significant negative effect on shortterm memory span, and that memory was better for derived words (e.g., boy+hood) than inflected words (e.g., boy+s), and regular than irregular words.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Baddeley, Alan David 1986. Working memory. Clarendon Press, Oxford.

    Baddeley A. D. , '', in Working memory , (1986 ) -.

  • Baddeley, Alan David 2000. The episodic buffer: A new component of working memory? In: Trends in Cognitive Sciences 4: 417–423.

    Baddeley A. D. , 'The episodic buffer: A new component of working memory? ' (2000 ) 4 Trends in Cognitive Sciences : 417 -423.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Baddeley, Alan David 2001. The magic number and the episodic buffer (Commentary on “The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity” by N. Cowan). In: Behavioural and Brain Sciences 24: 117–118.

    Baddeley A. D. , 'The magic number and the episodic buffer (Commentary on “The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity” by N. Cowan) ' (2001 ) 24 Behavioural and Brain Sciences : 117 -118.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Baddeley, Alan David 2002. Is working memory still working? In: European Psychologist 7: 85–97.

    Baddeley A. D. , 'Is working memory still working? ' (2002 ) 7 European Psychologist : 85 -97.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Baddeley, Alan David — Graham Hitch 1974. Working memory. In: Gordon H. Bower (ed.): The psychology of learning and motivation (Vol. 8), 47–89. Academic Press, New York.

    Hitch G. , '', in The psychology of learning and motivation (Vol. 8) , (1974 ) -.

  • Baddeley, Alan David. — Neil Thomson — Mary Buchanan 1975. Word length and the structure of short-term memory. In: Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior 14: 575–589.

    Buchanan M. , 'Word length and the structure of short-term memory ' (1975 ) 14 Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior : 575 -589.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Butterworth, Brian 1983. Lexical representation. In: Brian Butterworth (ed.): Language production, Volume 2, 257–294. Academic Press, London.

    Butterworth B. , '', in Language production, Volume 2 , (1983 ) -.

  • Caplan, David — Gloria Waters 1994. Articulatory length and phonological similarity in span tasks: A reply to Baddeley and Andrade. In: Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology 47: 1055–1062.

    Waters G. , 'Articulatory length and phonological similarity in span tasks: A reply to Baddeley and Andrade ' (1994 ) 47 Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology : 1055 -1062.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Chase, William Gary — Herbert A. Simon 1973. The mind’s eye in chess. In: William Gary Chase (ed.): Visual information processing, 215–281. Academic Press, New York.

    Simon H. A. , '', in Visual information processing , (1973 ) -.

  • Chen, Zhihijan — Nelson Cowan 2005. Chunk limits and length limits in immediate recall: A reconciliation. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 31: 1235–1249.

    Cowan N. , 'Chunk limits and length limits in immediate recall: A reconciliation ' (2005 ) 31 Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition : 1235 -1249.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Cowan, Nelson 2001. The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity. In: Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24: 87–185.

    Cowan N. , 'The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity ' (2001 ) 24 Behavioral and Brain Sciences : 87 -185.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Cowan, Nelson (ed.) 2005. Working memory capacity. Psychology Press, New York.

    '', in Working memory capacity , (2005 ) -.

  • Cowan, Nelson — Zhijian Chen — Jeffrey N. Rouder 2004. Constant capacity in an immediate serial-recall task: A logical sequel to Miller (1956). In: Psychological Science 15: 634–640.

    Rouder J. N. , 'Constant capacity in an immediate serial-recall task: A logical sequel to Miller (1956) ' (2004 ) 15 Psychological Science : 634 -640.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Cowan, Nelson — Noelle L. Wood — Lara D. Nugent — Michel Treisman 1997. There are two word-length effects in verbal short-term memory: Opposed effects of duration and complexity. In: Psychological Science 8: 290–295.

    Treisman M. , 'There are two word-length effects in verbal short-term memory: Opposed effects of duration and complexity ' (1997 ) 8 Psychological Science : 290 -295.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Feldman, Laurie Beth (ed.) 1995. Morphological aspects of language processing. Lawrence Erlbaum, Hillsdale, New Jersey.

    '', in Morphological aspects of language processing , (1995 ) -.

  • Gathercole, Susan E. 1999. Cognitive approaches to the development of short-term memory. In: Trends in Cognitive Sciences 3: 410–419.

    Gathercole S. E. , 'Cognitive approaches to the development of short-term memory ' (1999 ) 3 Trends in Cognitive Sciences : 410 -419.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Gobet, Fernand 1998. Memory for the meaningless: How chunks help. In: Morton Ann Gernsbacher — Sharon J. Derry (eds): Proceedings of the Twentieth Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, 398–403. Lawrence Erlbaum, Hillsdale NJ.

    Gobet F. , '', in Proceedings of the Twentieth Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society , (1998 ) -.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Gobet, Fernand — Peter C. R. Lane — Steve Croker — Peter C.-H. Cheng — Gary Jones — Iain Oliver — Julian M. Pine 2001. Chunking mechanisms in human learning. In: Trends in Cognitive Sciences 5: 236–243.

    Pine J. M. , 'Chunking mechanisms in human learning ' (2001 ) 5 Trends in Cognitive Sciences : 236 -243.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Gobet, Fernand — Herbert A. Simon 1996a. Recall of random and distorted positions: Implications for the theory of expertise. In: Memory and Cognition 24: 493–503.

    Simon H. A. , 'Recall of random and distorted positions: Implications for the theory of expertise ' (1996 ) 24 Memory and Cognition : 493 -503.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Gobet, Fernand — Herbert A. Simon 1996b. Templates in chess memory: A mechanism for recalling several boards. In: Cognitive Psychology 31: 1–40.

    Simon H. A. , 'Templates in chess memory: A mechanism for recalling several boards ' (1996 ) 31 Cognitive Psychology : 1 -40.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Gobet, Fernand — Herbert A. Simon 2000. Five seconds or sixty? Presentation time in expert memory. In: Cognitive Science 24: 651–682.

    Simon H. A. , 'Five seconds or sixty? Presentation time in expert memory ' (2000 ) 24 Cognitive Science : 651 -682.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Groot, Adriaan D. de 1978. Thought and choice in chess (Original publication in 1946.). Mouton de Gruyter, The Hague.

    Groot A. D. , '', in Thought and choice in chess (Original publication in 1946.) , (1978 ) -.

  • Hulme, Charles — Philip Newton — Nelson Cowan — George Stuart — Gordon Brown 1999. Think before you speak: Pauses, memory search, and trace redintegration processes in verbal memory span. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology Learning, Memory, and Cognition 25: 447–463.

    Brown G. , 'Think before you speak: Pauses, memory search, and trace redintegration processes in verbal memory span ' (1999 ) 25 Journal of Experimental Psychology Learning, Memory, and Cognition : 447 -463.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Hulme, Charles — Steven Roodenrys — Richard Schweickert — Gordon D. Brown — Sarah Martin — George Stuart 1997. Word-frequency effects on short-term memory tasks: Evidence for a redintegration process in immediate serial recall. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology 23: 1217–1232.

    Stuart G. , 'Word-frequency effects on short-term memory tasks: Evidence for a redintegration process in immediate serial recall ' (1997 ) 23 Journal of Experimental Psychology : 1217 -1232.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Hulme, Charles — Vickie Tordoff 1989. Working memory development: The effects of speech rate, word length, and acoustic similarity on serial recall. In: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 47: 72–87.

    Tordoff V. , 'Working memory development: The effects of speech rate, word length, and acoustic similarity on serial recall ' (1989 ) 47 Journal of Experimental Child Psychology : 72 -87.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Järvikivi, Juhani — Jussi Niemi 2002. Form-based representation in the mental lexicon: Priming (with) bound stem allomorphs in Finnish. In: Brain and Language 81: 412–423.

    Niemi J. , 'Form-based representation in the mental lexicon: Priming (with) bound stem allomorphs in Finnish ' (2002 ) 81 Brain and Language : 412 -423.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Jefferies, Elizabeth — Ralph Matthew A. Lambon — Alan David Baddeley 2004. Automatic and control processing in sentence recall: The role of long-term and working memory. In: Journal of Language and Memory 51: 623–643.

    Baddeley A. D. , 'Automatic and control processing in sentence recall: The role of long-term and working memory ' (2004 ) 51 Journal of Language and Memory : 623 -643.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Johnson, Neil F. 1969. The role of chunking and organization in the process of recall. In: Gordon H. Bower — Janet T. Spence (eds): Psychology of learning and motivation (Vol. 4.), 171–247. Academic Press, Oxford.

    Johnson N. F. , '', in Psychology of learning and motivation (Vol. 4.) , (1969 ) -.

  • Kenesei, István — Robert M. Vago — Anna Fenyvesi 1998. Hungarian. Routledge, London & New York.

    Fenyvesi A. , '', in Hungarian , (1998 ) -.

  • Kiefer, Ferenc (ed.) 2000. Strukturális magyar nyelvtan 3. Morfológia [A structural grammar of Hungarian 3. Morphology]. Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest.

    '', in Strukturális magyar nyelvtan 3. Morfológia , (2000 ) -.

  • Lane, Peter C. R. — Fernand Gobet — Peter C.-H. Cheng 2001. What forms the chunks in a subject’s performance? Lessons from the CHREST computational model of learning (Commentary on “The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity” by N. Cowan). In: Behavioural and Brain Sciences 24: 128–129.

    Cheng P. C.-H. , 'What forms the chunks in a subject’s performance? Lessons from the CHREST computational model of learning (Commentary on “The magical number 4 in short-term memory: A reconsideration of mental storage capacity” by N. Cowan) ' (2001 ) 24 Behavioural and Brain Sciences : 128 -129.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Lovatt, Peter — S. E. Avons — Jackie Masterson 2002. Output decay in immediate serial recall: Speech time revisited. In: Journal of Memory and Language 46: 227–243.

    Masterson J. , 'Output decay in immediate serial recall: Speech time revisited ' (2002 ) 46 Journal of Memory and Language : 227 -243.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Lukács, ágnes — Csaba Pléh 1999. Hungarian cross-modal priming and treatment of nonsense words supports the dual-process hypothesis (Commentary on “Lexical entries and rules of language: A multidisciplinary study of German inflection” by H. Clahsen). In: Behavioral and Brain Sciences 22: 1030–1031.

    Pléh C. , 'Hungarian cross-modal priming and treatment of nonsense words supports the dual-process hypothesis (Commentary on “Lexical entries and rules of language: A multidisciplinary study of German inflection” by H. Clahsen) ' (1999 ) 22 Behavioral and Brain Sciences : 1030 -1031.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • MacWhinney, Brian 1985. Hungarian language acquisition as an exemplification of a general model of grammatical development. In: Dan Isaac Slobin (ed.): The crosscultural study of language acquisition, 1069–1155. Lawrence Erlbaum, Hillsdale NJ.

    MacWhinney B. , '', in The crosscultural study of language acquisition , (1985 ) -.

  • Marslen-Wilson, William — W. D. Lorainne Komisarjevsky Tyler — Rachelle Waksler — Lianne Older 1994. Morphology and meaning in the English mental lexicon. In: Psychological Review 101: 3–33.

    Older L. , 'Morphology and meaning in the English mental lexicon ' (1994 ) 101 Psychological Review : 3 -33.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Miháltz, Márton — Csaba Hatvani — Judit Kuti — Győrgy Szarvas — János Csirik — Gábor Prószéky — Tamás Váradi 2008. Methods and results of the Hungarian Word- Net project. In: Attila Tanács — Dóra Csendes — Veronika Vincze — Christiane Fellbaum — Piek Vossen (eds): Proceedings of the Fourth Global WordNet Conference, 311–321. University of Szeged, Szeged.

    Váradi T. , '', in Proceedings of the Fourth Global WordNet Conference , (2008 ) -.

  • Miller, George A. 1956. The magical number seven, plus or minus two: Some limits on our capacity for processing information. In: Psychological Review 63: 81–97.

    Miller G. A. , 'The magical number seven, plus or minus two: Some limits on our capacity for processing information ' (1956 ) 63 Psychological Review : 81 -97.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Mueller, Shane T. — Travis L. Seymour — David E. Kieras — David E. Meyer 2003. Theoretical implications of articulatory duration, phonological similarity, and phonological complexity in verbal working memory. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 29: 1353–1380.

    Meyer D. E. , 'Theoretical implications of articulatory duration, phonological similarity, and phonological complexity in verbal working memory ' (2003 ) 29 Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition : 1353 -1380.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Neath, Ian — James S. Nairne 1995. Word-length effects in immediate memory: Overwriting trace decay theory. In: Psychonomic Bulletin and Review 2: 429–441.

    Nairne J. S. , 'Word-length effects in immediate memory: Overwriting trace decay theory ' (1995 ) 2 Psychonomic Bulletin and Review : 429 -441.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Pinker, Stephen 1991. Rules of language. In: Science 253: 530–535.

    Pinker S. , 'Rules of language ' (1991 ) 253 Science : 530 -535.

  • Pinker, Stephen 1997. Words and rules in the human brain. In: Nature 387: 547–548.

    Pinker S. , 'Words and rules in the human brain ' (1997 ) 387 Nature : 547 -548.

  • Pinker, Stephen 1998. Words and rules. In: Lingua 106: 219–2142.

    Pinker S. , 'Words and rules ' (1998 ) 106 Lingua : 219 -2142.

  • Rubin, Gary S. — Curtis A. Becker — Roger H. Freeman 1979. Morphological structure and its effects on visual word recognition. In: Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behaviour 18: 757–767.

    Freeman R. H. , 'Morphological structure and its effects on visual word recognition ' (1979 ) 18 Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behaviour : 757 -767.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Schweickert, Richard 1993. A multinomial processing tree model for degradation and redintegration in immediate recall. In: Memory and Cognition 21: 168–175.

    Schweickert R. , 'A multinomial processing tree model for degradation and redintegration in immediate recall ' (1993 ) 21 Memory and Cognition : 168 -175.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Schweickert, Richard — Brian Boruff 1986. Short-term memory capacity: Magic number or magic spell? In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 12: 419–425.

    Boruff B. , 'Short-term memory capacity: Magic number or magic spell? ' (1986 ) 12 Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition : 419 -425.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Service, Elisabeth 1998. The effect of word length on immediate serial recall depends on phonological complexity, not articulatory duration. In: Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology: Section A 51: 283–304.

    Service E. , 'The effect of word length on immediate serial recall depends on phonological complexity, not articulatory duration ' (1998 ) 51 Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology: Section A : 283 -304.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Service, Elisabeth — Anna-Marie Tujulin 2002. Recall of morphologically complex forms is affected by memory task but not dyslexia. In: Brain and Language 81: 42–54.

    Tujulin A.-M. , 'Recall of morphologically complex forms is affected by memory task but not dyslexia ' (2002 ) 81 Brain and Language : 42 -54.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Slak, Stefan 1970. Phonemic recoding of digital information. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology 86: 398–406.

    Slak S. , 'Phonemic recoding of digital information ' (1970 ) 86 Journal of Experimental Psychology : 398 -406.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Taft, Marcus 1979. Recognition on affixed words and the word-frequency effect. In: Memory and Cognition 7: 263–272.

    Taft M. , 'Recognition on affixed words and the word-frequency effect ' (1979 ) 7 Memory and Cognition : 263 -272.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Thorn, Annabel. S. C. — Susan E. Gathercole — Clive R. Frankish 2005. Redintegration and the benefits of long-term knowledge in verbal short-term memory: An evaluation of Schweickert’s (1993) multinomial processing tree model. In: Cognitive Psychology 50: 133–158.

    Frankish C. R. , 'Redintegration and the benefits of long-term knowledge in verbal short-term memory: An evaluation of Schweickert’s (1993) multinomial processing tree model ' (2005 ) 50 Cognitive Psychology : 133 -158.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Tulving, Endel — John E. Patkau 1962. Concurrent effects of contextual constraint and word frequency on immediate recall and learning of verbal material. In: Canadian Journal of Psychology 16: 83–95.

    Patkau J. E. , 'Concurrent effects of contextual constraint and word frequency on immediate recall and learning of verbal material ' (1962 ) 16 Canadian Journal of Psychology : 83 -95.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Ullman, Michael Thomas 2001. A neurocognitive perspective on language: The declarative/procedural model. In: Nature Review Neuroscience 2: 717–726.

    Ullman M. T. , 'A neurocognitive perspective on language: The declarative/procedural model ' (2001 ) 2 Nature Review Neuroscience : 717 -726.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Váradi, Tamás 2002. The Hungarian National Corpus. In: Mark T. Maybury (ed.): Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation, 385–389. European Language Resource Association, Las Palmas.

    Váradi T. , '', in Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation , (2002 ) -.

    • Search Google Scholar
  • Zhang, Guojun — Herbert A. Simon 1985. STM capacity for Chinese words and idioms: Chunking and acoustical loop hypothesis. In:Memory and Cognition 13: 193–201.

    Simon H. A. , 'STM capacity for Chinese words and idioms: Chunking and acoustical loop hypothesis ' (1985 ) 13 Memory and Cognition : 193 -201.

    • Search Google Scholar