Executive Function and Prospective Memory: The Effect of Inhibitory Control and Working Memory Load

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Brown, Audrey Philena




This study examined the impact of a dual-task load on four- and five-year-olds’ event-based prospective memory (PM), as well as the relation between PM and two executive function skills: working memory (WM) and inhibitory control (IC). Children completed an ongoing task (OT), which required pointing to pictures of animals in each image array. Embedded in this task was the PM task, which required children to ring a bell when they saw a picture of a cat. To manipulate the effect of dual-task load, children were assigned to one of three conditions: Control (OT and PM); WM-load (OT, PM, simultaneously with WM task); or IC-load (OT, PM, simultaneously with IC task). Five-year-olds outperformed four-year-olds on the PM task. There was no effect of condition on children’s PM performance. Furthermore, WM and IC did not predict PM performance after controlling for age and language ability. Limitations and future directions are discussed.


Psychology - Behavioral




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Cognitive Science: 

Thesis Degree Level: 


Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Cognitive Science

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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