Current trends and future directions in working memory research

Miyake, A.; Saito, S.

The Japanese journal of psychology 72(4): 336-350


DOI: 10.4992/jjpsy.72.336
Accession: 068501741

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Working memory is a set of processes or a system that allows us to temporarily maintain task-relevant information during performance of complex cognitive tasks. It has recently been an intensively investigated topic in cognitive psychology, cognitive neuroscience, and other related disciplines, and important empirical and theoretical advances have been made during the last several years. In this article, we review the current state of working memory research, focusing on important recent methodological and theoretical developments in the field. Specifically, we provide an update of recent influential working memory theories (e.g., Baddeley's multicomponent model and an ACT-R model) and discuss the current status of various controversial theoretical issues, such as the unitary versus non-unitary nature of working memory, the nature of working memory limitations, the control and regulation of working memory, and the relationship of working memory to long-term memory. We conclude our review by pointing out some important future directions for working memory research.