Evidence of a metacognitive benefit to memory?

Timothy Hollins, Nathan Weber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Studies of the memory-control framework have contrasted free-report and forced-report recall, with little regard to the order of these two tests. The present experiment sought to demonstrate that test order is crucial, and that this suggests a potential role for metacognitive monitoring on memory retrieval. Participants undertook tests of episodic and semantic memory in both free- and forced-report format, in one of the two potential response orders. This showed that free-report performance was more accurate if conducted prior to forced-report, rather than after it, with no cost to memory quantity. Additionally, there was a trend towards higher forced-report performance if it was preceded by an initial free-report test, a pattern revealed by a meta-analysis to be consistent with previous studies in the literature. These findings suggest a reciprocal relationship between metacognitive monitoring and early retrieval processes in memory that results in higher memory performance when monitoring is encouraged.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-325
Number of pages9
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2017


  • forced-report
  • free-report
  • Metacognition
  • retrieval


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