Central executive involvement in children's spatial memory

Su Yin ANG, Kerry LEE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Previous research with adults found that spatial short-term and working memory tasks impose similar demands on executive resources. We administered spatial short-term and working memory tasks to 8- and 11-year-olds in three separate experiments. In Experiments 1 and 2 an executive suppression task (random number generation) was found to impair performances on a short-term memory task (Corsi blocks), a working memory task (letter rotation), and a spatial visualisation task (paper folding). In Experiment 3 an articulatory suppression task only impaired performance on the working memory task. These results suggest that short-term and working memory performances are dependent on executive resources. The degree to which the short-term memory task was dependent on executive resources was expected to be related to the amount of experience children have had with such tasks. Yet we found no significant age-related suppression effects. This was attributed to differences in employment of cognitive strategies by the older children. Copyright © 2008 Psychology Press, an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an Informa business.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)918-933
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


Ang, S. Y., & Lee, K. (2008). Central executive involvement in children's spatial memory. Memory, 16(8), 918-933. doi: 10.1080/09658210802365347


  • Visuo-spatial working memory
  • Executive functions
  • Dual task interference
  • Developmental differences
  • Cognitive strategies


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