Please wait a minute...
Acta Psychologica Sinica
Emotional Memory Enhancement Effect in Dual-processing Recognition Retrieval
MAO Xinrui; XU Huifang; GUO Chunyan
(Beijing Key Laboratory of “Learning & Cognition”, Department of Psychology, Capital Normal University, Beijing 100037, China)
Download: PDF(900 KB)   Review File (1 KB) 
Export: BibTeX | EndNote | Reference Manager | ProCite | RefWorks    

In studies of recognition retrieval, emotional memory enhancement effect was described as better memory performance for emotional stimuli than neutral ones. Based on dual-processing theory, recognition retrieval can be divided into two different processes: familiarity and recollection. Two important event-related potential correlates, the FN400 (a negative shift in frontal regions at 300~500ms time window), and the late positive complex (LPC; a positive peak over posterior regions at 500~800ms time window) was associated with familiarity and recollection, respectively. Some researchers considered that emotional memory enhancement effect occurred in recollection but not in familiarity. However, some indirect evidences showed that emotion could enhance memory strength in familiarity-based retrieval. Our research focused on two controversies: 1) whether emotion can enhance familiarity, and 2) how arouse and valence of emotion affect memory enhancement effect. In the current experiment, we used modified “remember/know” paradigm with ERPs recorded, to investigate how emotion influences familiarity and recollection in long-term study-test duration. Subjects were instructed to learn the pictures (including neutral, negative and positive pictures). And after one week, they made “remember/know/guess/new” recognition judgments towards stimuli intermixed with learnt and new pictures. Finally, the valence and arouse of experimental pictures were evaluated by the subjects participated in the experiment. Behaviorally, for studied pictures endorsed as “know”, the memory performances of emotional pictures were better than neutral ones, and there was no significant difference between emotional valences. As for the “remember” judgments, the memory performances of negative pictures were better than positive and neutral ones. ERP results show that, for the pictures judged as “know”, the FN400 old/new effects were significant in emotion condition but not in neutral condition, suggesting that emotion arousing enhanced familiarity-based retrieval. For pictures judged as “remember”, the LPC potentials of negative pictures were more positive than positive and neutral ones, showing that emotion valence modulated recollection-based retrieval. Our findings suggest that: in long-term study-test duration, emotional pictures could result in memory enhancement effect in the familiarity-based as well as the recollection-based retrieval. The emotional memory enhancement effect was not only modulated by the arousing as well as the valence of emotion. Emotional arousing played a predominant role in enhancing memory strength for familiarity-based retrieval. Emotional valence exerts influence exclusively on recollection-based retrieval in a way that only negative pictures could make enhancement effect on recollection.

Keywords emotional memory      recognition retrieval      ERP      familiarity      recollection     
Corresponding Authors: GUO Chunyan, E-mail:   
Issue Date: 25 September 2015
E-mail this article
E-mail Alert
Articles by authors
MAO Xinrui
XU Huifang
GUO Chunyan
Cite this article:   
MAO Xinrui,XU Huifang,GUO Chunyan. Emotional Memory Enhancement Effect in Dual-processing Recognition Retrieval[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.01111
URL:     OR
[1] DUAN Jinyun; SHI Jiayi; LING Bin. The influence of high commitment organization on employee voice behavior: A dual-process model examination[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2017, 49(4): 539-553.
[2] YANG Zhaoning; GU Zibei; WANG Dujuan; TAN Xuyun; WANG Xiaoming. The effect of anger and sadness on prosocial decision making: The role of the interpersonal attribution of responsibility[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2017, 49(3): 393-403.
[3] ZHAO Simin; WU Yan; LI Tianhong; GUO Qingtong. Morpho-semantic processing in Chinese word recognition: An ERP study[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2017, 49(3): 296-306.
[4] ZHANG Lin; LIU Shen; XU Qiang; WU Xiaoyan; YANG Mengyuan. Long-term effect of violence exposure in real-life on aggressive behaviors: A moderated mediation model[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2017, 49(1): 50-59.
[5] LI Caina; SUN Ying; TUO Rui; LIU Jia. The effects of attachment security on interpersonal trust: The moderating role of attachment anxiety[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(8): 989-1001.
[6] SONG Juan; GUO Fengbo; ZHANG Zhen; YUAN Sheng; JIN Hua; WANG Yiwen. Interpersonal distance influences on pain empathy: Friends priming effect[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(7): 833-844.
[7] LIU Fang; DING Jinhong; ZHANG Qin. Positive affect and selective attention: Approach-motivation intensity influences the early and late attention processing stages[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(7): 794-803.
[8] XU Ju; HU Yuanyan; WANG Shuang; LI Aisu; ZHANG Ming; ZHANG Yang. Cognitive neural mechanism of training effect on inhibition of return: Evidence from an ERP study[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(6): 658-670.
[9] WU Yan; MO Deyuan; WANG Haiying; YU Yiyang; CHEN Hsuan-Chih; ZHANG Ming. ERP effects of position-specific radicals in Chinese character recognition: Evidence from semantic categorization[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(6): 599-606.
[10] HUANG SiLin; HAN MingYue; ZHANG Mei. The impact of interpersonal relationship on social responsibility[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(5): 578-587.
[11] LIU Yun; LI Yanping; TU Yidong. Why employees help colleagues: A multilevel study on leader-member exchange and helping behavior[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(4): 385-397.
[12] JIA Lei; ZHANG Chang-Jie; ZHANG Qing-lin. Cognitive mechanisms of the emotional attentional blink: Evidence from behavior and ERPs[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(2): 174-184.
[13] WANG Xieshun; WU Yan; ZHAO Simin; NI Chao; ZHANG Ming. The effects of semantic radicals and phonetic radicals in Chinese phonogram recognition[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(2): 130-140.
[14] JIA Yongping; ZHOU Chu; LI Lin; GUO Xiuyan. Recognition without cued recall (RWCR) phenomenon in Chinese characters: Effects of restudying and testing[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(2): 111-120.
[15] LI Jing; CHEN Antao; CHEN Jie; LONG Changquan. The neural signs of categorization and property inferences during verbal category-based properties induction[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 2016, 48(11): 1410-1422.
Full text



Copyright © Acta Psychologica Sinica
Support by Beijing Magtech