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Current Research in Psychology



The present studies examined the roles of identity and spatial working memory in change detection. Observers completed a spatial or identity working memory task concurrently with a change detection task. In the change detection task, participants were presented naturalistic scenes that contained either a color or location change to one object. Concurrently, participants remembered either the colors or locations of four squares. There was specific disruption of performance when the working memory task and the change detection task loaded the same subsystem of working memory. There was also evidence that spatial information is processed more readily than identity information. This suggests that although there are separate systems for identity and spatial working memory, these subsystems are not necessarily created equal in that processing in the spatial processing may have priority over identity processing. However, this priority can be overridden during change detection if spatial memory is already occupied.

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