Developmental and knowledge base differences in the acquisition and extension of a memory strategy Academic Article uri icon


  • Developmental differences in the acquisition and extension of an organizational strategy were examined in two experiments. In Experiment 1, fourth and seventh graders received four free-recall trials on each of two categorically related lists of words. Recall and clustering increased with age and were greater for typical than atypical items. The percentage of subjects classified as strategic was greater for the older children and typical items on most trials across both lists. For those subjects who had acquired a strategy in phase I, extension of the strategy to a new list was somewhat more apt to occur for older children and the typical items. In Experiment 2, third, fifth, and seventh graders were trained to use an organizational strategy on either typical or atypical items, with half then receiving either typical or atypical items on a transfer list. On the training trials, agerelated differences were limited to the atypical lists. Generalization of the instructed strategy was greater (in terms of recall, clustering, and strategic classification) for children trained on the typical lists, with age differences in strategic classification being limited to the atypical items. The results were interpreted as reflecting the importance of knowledge base factors for the acquisition and extension of a memory strategy, with younger children's strategy use being more influenced by knowledge base factors than that of older children's. © 1989.

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Bjorklund, D. F., & Buchanan, J. J.

citation count

  • 25

publication date

  • December 1989