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The Effects of Similarity and Repetition of Response Alternatives on Various Types of Paired Associate Learning

Report Number: AMRL TR 65-214
Author: Johnson, K. A.
Author: Senter, R. J.
Author: Smith, F. W.
Corporate Author: University of Cincinnati
Laboratory: Aerospace Medical Research Laboratories
Date of Publication: 1965-12
Pages: 24
Contract: AF 33(615)-1046
Project: 1710
Task: 171007
AD Number: AD0633059

The investigation was an attempt to find learning materials for which the simultaneous presentation technique would be inferior to other techniques. Subjects learned a 40-item list of paired-associates under one of four training conditions. The stimulus terms were the names of electronic circuits, the response terms, schematic diagrams of electronic circuits. Half the items had distractors that were very similar to the correct response term, the remaining half, distractors that were less similar. Half the items in each of these groups had distractors that were the correct response terms for other items in the list. The remaining items had distractors that were unique to a given item. The overall differences between training techniques were not large, but there was some indication that the Five Alternative Prompt condition was inferior to the remaining conditions. Interactions were found between training conditions and item types, but again the differences involved were not large. Separate comparisons on the various item types indicated that in no case was the One Alternative Prompt condition reliably inferior to any of the remaining conditions.

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