alexa The effect of individual differences in working memory capacity on sentence comprehension: an FMRI study.


International Journal of School and Cognitive Psychology

Author(s): Newman SD, Malaia E, Seo R, Cheng H

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Abstract This study explores the interaction between working memory systems and language processing by examining how differences in working memory capacity (WMC) modulates neural activation levels and functional connectivity during sentence comprehension. The results indicate that two working memory systems may be involved in sentence comprehension, the verbal working memory system and the episodic buffer, but during different phases of the task. A sub-region of the left inferior frontal gyrus (BA 45) was correlated with WMC during the probe and not during sentence reading while the only region to reveal a correlation with WMC during sentence reading was the posterior cingulate/precuneus area, a region linked to event representation. In addition, functional connectivity analysis suggests that there were two distinct networks affected by WMC. The first was a semantic network that included the middle temporal cortex, an anterior region of the inferior frontal gyrus and the inferior parietal region. The second included the posterior cingulate and BA 45 of the inferior frontal gyrus. We propose here that high capacity readers may generate an event representation of the sentence during reading that aids in comprehension and that this event representation involves the processing of the posterior cingulate cortex.
This article was published in Brain Topogr and referenced in International Journal of School and Cognitive Psychology

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