Want to Maximize Your Memory Now or in the Future? Young Adults’ Memory Strategy Selection Depends on their Goals

Stephanie Smith Butler University, Abbey Collins Butler University
Faculty Sponsor(s): Tara Lineweaver Butler University
Our study explores whether young adults’ memory goals affect their choice of memory strategies. 69 undergraduate students (77% female, 90% white) competed an online survey about how important various memory goals are to them, their perceptions of the effectiveness of several strategies towards meeting these goals, and the frequency with which they currently use these strategies. We found that young adults feel that some memory goals are more important now than they will be in the future (memorizing information), some goals will be more important in the future than they are now (finding everyday objects) and some goals are equally important across time (remembering appointments and having the best possible memory). Additionally, they perceived Cognitive Health, Physical Health and Positive Attitude strategies as more effective towards future than current goals, but External Aids, Internal Strategies and Effort as equally effective for meeting current and future goals. Most importantly, memory goals strongly related to the strategies young adults currently use in their everyday lives. Specifically, memory goals linked to current memory tasks predicted young adults’ reported use of Physical Health, External Aids, Internal Strategies and Effort, whereas goals linked to future tasks related to use of Cognitive Health, Physical Health, External Aids and Effort. Interestingly, Positive Attitude did not relate to specific tasks, but did correlate with young adults’ attempts to maximize their memory now and in the future. Together, our results indicate that in order to better understand young adults’ strategy selection, their personal memory goals must be considered.
Oral Presentation

When & Where

10:45 AM
Pharmacy & Health Sciences 103