Exploration of an adaptive training regimen that can target the secondary memory component of working memory capacity

Bradley S. Gibson, Dawn M. Gondoli, William G. Kronenberger, Ann C. Johnson, Christine M. Steeger, Rebecca A. Morrissey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The dual-component model contends that working memory (WM) capacity consists of two components. The first is a flexible attention component that involves the active maintenance of a limited amount of information in primary memory (PM), and the second is a controlled retrieval component that involves a cue-dependent search of secondary memory (SM) for information that has been lost from PM. Recent evidence has suggested that the adaptive WM training regimen known as "Cogmed-RM" is not optimally designed, because it only targets PM abilities, not SM abilities. The present study was conducted to investigate whether Cogmed-RM could be modified to target SM abilities by decreasing the recall accuracy threshold that defines individual ability during training. The main findings suggested that the SM component of WM capacity could be targeted by lowering the recall accuracy threshold. The present findings are important because they suggest that adaptive training regimens can be designed that selectively target specific components of WM capacity, and they raise the possibility that the potency of existing training regimens can be increased.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)726-737
Number of pages12
JournalMemory and Cognition
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2013


  • Dual-component model of working memory
  • Working memory capacity
  • Working memory training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Medicine(all)

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