Thematic prompting in paired-associate learning

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Investigated the hypothesis that thematic prompts facilitate learning by furnishing mediators. In exp. I with 90 undergraduates, paired associates were learned as readily from unprompted sentences and unadorned pairs as from thematically prompted sentences displayed as a whole. In exp. Ii and iii with 56 and 64 undergraduates, the prompted sentences were initially exposed with blanks in place of the response terms to induce complete processing of the sentences. Thematic prompts enhanced learning under these conditions, perhaps because the prompts provided mediators or facilitated encoding of the cues. The effectiveness of a prompt did not depend on the extent to which it determined the response, a fact which is difficult to understand within standard formulations of mediation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)315-321
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1971


  • paired-associate learning, thematic prompts as mediators, college students

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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