Recalling yesterday and predicting tomorrow

School of Psychology, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Qld 4072, Australia
Cognitive Development (Impact Factor: 1.73). 07/2005; 20:362-372. DOI: 10.1016/j.cogdev.2005.05.002
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    ABSTRACT: The capacity to mentally project the self into the future, or what has been termed "episodic foresight" (EpF), is becoming a popular topic of study in developmental psychology. Several theories propose that EpF is related to theory of mind (ToM) and executive function (EF). However, these links have not been tested using standard behavioral tasks in young children. Accordingly, we administered a battery of EpF, ToM, and EF tasks to 90 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds. After controlling for age and language ability, the EpF tasks were not intercorrelated, nor were they individually related to EF or ToM. As such, this study challenges the claim that EpF, at least as currently assessed in young children, is related to their developing ToM and EF abilities.
    Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 08/2014; 128C:120-137. · 3.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Research indicates ongoing development of prospective memory as well as theory of mind and executive functions across late childhood and adolescence. However, so far the interplay of these processes has not been investigated. Therefore, the purpose of the current study was to investigate whether theory of mind and executive control processes (specifically updating, switching, and inhibition) predict prospective memory development across adolescence. In total, 42 adolescents and 41 young adults participated in this study. Young adults outperformed adolescents on tasks of prospective memory, theory of mind, and executive functions. Switching and theory of mind predicted prospective memory performance in adolescents.
    Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 06/2014; · 3.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We investigated the episodic/semantic distinction in remembering the past and imagining the future and explored cognitive mechanisms predicting events’ specificity throughout the lifespan. Eighty-three 6- to 81-year-old participants, divided into 5 age groups, underwent past, present and future episodic (events’ evocation) and semantic (self-descriptions) autobiographical tasks and a complementary cognitive test battery (executive functions, working and episodic memory). The main results showed age effects on episodic events’ evocation indicating an inverted U function (i.e., developmental progression from 6 to 21 years and aging decline). By contrast, age effects were slighter on self-descriptions while self-defining events’ evocation increased with age. Furthermore, age effects on episodic events’ evocation were mainly mediated by age effects on cognitive functions and personal semantics. These new findings indicate a developmental and aging episodic/semantic distinction for both remembering the past and imagining the future, and suggest that above similarities, these abilities could have a fundamentally different basis.
    Consciousness and Cognition 10/2014; · 2.31 Impact Factor