Assessing the costs and benefits of production in recognition.

Glen Bodner, Alexander Taikh, Jonathan M. Fawcett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


The production effect is a memory advantage for items studied aloud over items studied silently. Although it typically is found within subjects, here we also obtained it between subjects in a recognition task-providing new evidence that production can be an effective study strategy. Our experiment, and a set of meta-analyses, also evaluated whether the within effect reflects costs to silent items and/or benefits to aloud items. Contrary to a strong distinctiveness account, we found little evidence that aloud items show an additional within-subjects benefit. Instead, silent items suffered an additional within-subjects cost. Blocking silent and aloud items eliminated this cost, suggesting that the cost was due to mixing silent and aloud items. Our discussion focuses on implications for distinctiveness and strength accounts of the production effect and on how to implement production as an encoding strategy depending on the learner's goals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-154
Number of pages6
JournalPsychonomic Bulletin and Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014


  • Costs/benefits
  • Distinctiveness
  • Memory strength
  • Meta-analyses
  • Production effect
  • Recognition memory


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