The contingent negative variation during a memory retrieval task

Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology
W T RothT B Vesecky

Abstract

Evoked potentials were recorded from the human scalp during performance of a memory retrieval task modeled after a paradigm originated by Sternberg (1966). Subjects were required to decide whether a probe digit was contained in a series of one to four target digits presented a few seconds before. The amplitude of the contingent negative variation (CNV) preceding the probe digit and the speed of CNV resolution after the probe varied as a function of target set size. CNV amplitude was greatest when the set size was one. The smaller the set size, the more positive the evoked potential 300 msec after the probe, regardless of whether a motor response was required.

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Related Concepts

Bereitschaftspotential
Electrophysiology (Science)
Potentials, Event-Related
Memory
Physical Stimulation
Reaction Time
Critical Incident Technique

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