In the past decade, the COVIS model (Ashby, Alfonso-Reese, Turken, & Waldron, 1998) has emerged as the only neuropsychological theory for the existence of multiple brain systems for category learning. COVIS postulates that there are two systems, explicit and implicit, which compete against one another. These two systems reply on two discrete networks: explicit, or rule based categorization relies on executive function and working memory while implicit, or information integration categorization is mediated by dopaminergic pathways. The purpose of this pilot study was to further provide evidence for the existence of multiple systems of category learning. In all three experiments, we interrupted feedback processing using a modified Sternberg task. In Experiment 1 and 2, participants were separated into four conditions, rule based (RB) categorization with a short delay between feedback and the modified Sternberg task, RB categorization with a long delay, information integration (II) categorization with a short delay, and II categorization with a long delay. Participants in the RB conditions performed worse than those in the II conditions in Experiment 1 and 2. After determining there was no significant difference between the short and long delay manipulations, only the short delay was used for Experiment 3. Consistent with Experiment 1 and 2, participants in the RB condition performed worse than those in the II condition. Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) technology was also used in Experiment 3 to determine the difference in prefrontal activation between RB and II conditions. Although statistically not significant, across blocks, the difference in prefrontal activation increased.
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Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences; Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Ercolino, Ashley, "Taxing Working Memory: The Effects on Category Learning" (2015). HIM 1990-2015. 1864.