Learning is the process of accumulating information. Repetition can make the process of retrieving information more efficient. The mechanisms by which repetition facilitates the retrieval process, however, are not yet clear. Here, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the effects of repetition on cued recall. In this study, participants were asked to encode visually presented semantically unrelated word pairs. The word presented on the left side served as the cue, and the word presented on the right side was the target. In the first test phase, participants were presented with the cue and asked to recall the associated word (target) from the study phase. The second test phase was performed 20. min later using the same method. Participants responded orally during the interval between image acquisitions, and no feedback was provided. Neural activity for identical stimuli and responses across the two tests were compared. As compared with the first test phase, the right dorsolateral prefrontal, bilateral inferior parietal, and precuneus regions showed greater activity and the left inferior frontal areas showed reduced activity during the second test phase. These shifts in neural activity that occurred with repetition may reflect the dynamics of the retrieval process.
- Cued recall