Benchmarks provide common ground for model development: Reply to Logie (2018) and Vandierendonck (2018)

Klaus Oberauer, Stephan Lewandowsky, Edward Awh, Gordon D.A. Brown, Andrew Conway, Nelson Cowan, Christopher Donkin, Simon Farrell, Graham J. Hitch, Mark J. Hurlstone, Wei Ji Ma, Candice C. Morey, Derek Evan Nee, Judith Schweppe, Evie Vergauwe, Geoff Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review


We respond to the comments of Logie and Vandierendonck to our article proposing benchmark findings for evaluating theories and models of short-term and working memory. The response focuses on the two main points of criticism: (a) Logie and Vandierendonck argue that the scope of the set of benchmarks is too narrow. We explain why findings on how working memory is used in complex cognition, findings on executive functions, and findings from neuropsychological case studies are currently not included in the benchmarks, and why findings with visual and spatial materials are less prevalent among them. (b) The critics question the usefulness of the benchmarks and their ratings for advancing theory development. We explain why selecting and rating benchmarks is important and justifiable, and acknowledge that the present selection and rating decisions are in need of continuous updating. The usefulness of the benchmarks of all ratings is also enhanced by our concomitant online posting of data for many of these benchmarks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)972-977
Number of pages6
JournalPsychological bulletin
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2018


  • Benchmarks
  • Commentary
  • Executive functions
  • Short-term memory (STM)
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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