Using Mandler’s word sorting task, the effect of a possible experimental artifact which might account for the relation between the number of categories used and recall was investigated. When Ss sort into more piles, more cards are exposed to view, giving Ss the opportunity to scan more words. If scanning is analogous to repetition of the individual words, increased recall could be due to increased exposure to the words rather than to the use of more categories. No difference in the category-recall function was obtained between Ss who were and who were not allowed to see the top cards in the piles. These results suggest that repetition per se is not the cause of increased recall with more categories.
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