Modeling source-memory overdistribution

David Kellen, Henrik Singmann, Karl Christoph Klauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


In a process-dissociation task of source memory, individuals have to judge whether items belong to one of different, mutually exclusive contexts (e.g., Source A, Source B). The acceptance rates to different test probes (e.g., "Source A?") can be used to estimate the probability that the item is assigned simultaneously to the different contexts ("Source A and Source B"), designated as source overdistribution. Brainerd et al. (2012) have argued that source overdistribution can be used to refute traditional models of source memory such as the One or Two High-Threshold Source-Memory models (1HTSM and 2HTSM; Batchelder and Riefer, 1990; Bayen et al., 1996). We reanalyze previously-published datasets, including Brainerd et al.'s data, and show that there is no support for the rejection of the 1HTSM/2HTSM. Moreover, through a hierarchical-Bayesian model comparison using data from two new experiments, we show that the 2HTSM is not only able to account for source overdistribution, but also provides the best account of the data among different candidate models. These new results suggest that source overdistribution is an outcome of different guessing processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)216-236
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Memory and Language
StatePublished - Oct 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Familiarity
  • Hierarchical-Bayesian modeling
  • MPT modeling
  • Overdistribution
  • Recollection
  • Source memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Artificial Intelligence


Dive into the research topics of 'Modeling source-memory overdistribution'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this