Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


This study involved an investigation of the relationships between metamemorial abilities associated with two distinct retrieval processes: direct-accessing versus inferencing. Past metamemorial research has dealt almost exclusively with direct-access fact retrieval. There is a deficit in metamemorial research involving inferential retrieval. This study explored metamemorial abilities associated with direct-accessing versus inferencing in the same individual. Twenty undergraduate college students attempted to answer questions which intended to induce either direct-access or inferential retrieval. First, questions were presented in a recall task. Subjects rated the degree of confidence they had in their answers and predicted whether or not the answer was recognizable. Second, they attempted to recognize the answer to the same questions. The results indicated that the stimulus questions initiated the intended differential retrieval processes. Young adults were found to have more frequent feeling-of-knowing and better confidence accuracy for direct-accessing than inferencing, even though they correctly answered more questions that require inferential reasoning than questions that require direct-accessing. The young adults were also more confident in their answers to inference questions than in their answers to direct-access questions. Confidence ratings and prediction ratings were compared in a discussion of the metamemorial abilities associated with the distinct processes of direct-access versus inferential retrieval. Multiple trials were used to examine the effects of practice on these retrieval processes. The results are discussed in terms of replication of previous findings and contributions to new research areas.


Cameron Camp

Date of Award

Summer 1980

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 1980 Keri Sharp-Bickle


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