Computer learning by memory-impaired patients: Acquisition and retention of complex knowledge

Elizabeth L. Glisky, Daniel L. Schacter, Endel Tulving

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

232 Scopus citations


Several investigators have shown that memory-impaired patients are capable of learning relatively simple information in both the laboratory and everyday life. The present research explored whether patients with memory disorders could also acquire complex knowledge-the domain-specific knowledge needed for operating and interacting with a microcomputer. The reults indicated that patients with memory disorders of varying severity could learn to manipulate information on the computer screen, to write, edit and execute simple computer programs, and to perform disk storage and retrieval operations. The learning process, however, was slow relative to controls and the knowledge acquired appeared to be qualitatively different. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-328
Number of pages16
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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