Task meaningfulness and degree of cognitive impairment: Do they affect self-generated learning in persons with multiple sclerosis?

Yael Goverover, Nancy D. Chiaravalloti, John DeLuca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Self-generated learning has been shown to improve memory performance in persons with multiple sclerosis (MS), although little is known about the variables that influence its efficacy. This study examined whether task meaningfulness and degree of cognitive impairment influence the effectiveness of self-generation in improving learning and memory in MS. A mixed design with both a within- and between-subject factors was employed. The setting was a nonprofit rehabilitation research institution. Participants included 35 persons with MS with moderate to severe learning and memory impairments (SEVERE-MS), and 35 persons with little to no impairment (MILD-MS). Participants in both groups learned two types of tasks (functional everyday tasks and laboratory tasks), each in two learning conditions (Provided and Generated). Participants were required to recall the information immediately, 30 minutes, and 1 week following initial learning. Significantly more words were recalled from the generated condition relative to the provided condition. Additionally, self-generation was more effective in recall on the functional tasks compared to the laboratory tasks, consistent for both memory impaired and non-impaired participants. Self-generation may be influenced by variables such as task meaningfulness during learning and memory. In addition, type of task (functional versus laboratory) has a significant effect on memory. Implications for cognitive rehabilitation in MS are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-171
Number of pages17
JournalNeuropsychological Rehabilitation
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 4 2014

Keywords

  • Generation effect
  • Learning
  • Memory
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Self-generation
  • cognitive impairment
  • task meaningfulness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Rehabilitation
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Medicine(all)

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