Welcome Zach Shipstead's ASU Working Memory and
Attention Control Lab.
The focus of this laboratory is to explore the roles that
intentional remembering and intentional forgetting play in
producing complex cognition. My own hypothesis is that
intentional remembering is a process that is primarily
tapped by tasks traditionally used to measures individual
differences in working memory capacity (the ability to
remember critical information in the face of distraction).
Conversely, intentional forgetting is primarily tapped by
tasks that are traditionally used to measure general fluid
intelligence (the ability to reason with novel information).
In effect, these two processes allow a person to remain
focused on important information, rather than being drawn
into distraction or fixating on outdated information. The
strong correlation between working memory capacity and
fluid intelligence is thus explained by these processes being
organized around the goals of top-down attention.
Along with my students I have begun a series of studies
designed to clarify and extend this theory.