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The Activation of Unrelated and Canceled Intentions
Memory and Cognition
  • Richard L. Marsh
  • Jason L. Hicks
  • Eric Shane Bryan, Missouri University of Science and Technology
The intention superiority effect is the finding that intentions to perform an activity are stored in a heightened state of activation. The effect has also been generalized to the finding that once an intention is fulfilled, it is inhibited relative to more neutral material about which no intentionality has been formed. In two experiments, we tested some ecological and naturally occurring situations taken from the literature on prospective memory and demonstrated that they have consistent consequences for the activation level of an intention. In Experiment 1, a constellation of unrelated activities displayed heightened activation prior to completion and displayed inhibition after completion. In Experiment 2, canceling the intention resulted in inhibition just as completing the intention does in this paradigm. The results are discussed in terms of their practical and theoretical importance to theories of prospective memory.
English and Technical Communication
Keywords and Phrases
  • article,
  • cognition,
  • decision making,
  • human,
  • human experiment,
  • memory,
  • motivation,
  • normal human,
  • response time,
  • task performance,
  • theory,
  • verbal memory,
  • Humans,
  • Memory,
  • Vocabulary
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Print OCLC #
Document Type
Article - Journal
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© 1999 Psychonomic Society, All rights reserved.
Publication Date
Citation Information
Richard L. Marsh, Jason L. Hicks and Eric Shane Bryan. "The Activation of Unrelated and Canceled Intentions" Memory and Cognition Iss. 2 (1999) p. 320 - 327 ISSN: 0090-502X
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