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Darren Dahl (Editor in Chief)Eileen FischerGita JoharVicki Morwitz

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Examining the Spacing Effect in Advertising: Encoding Variability, Retrieval Processes, and Their Interaction

Sara L. Appleton-Knapp, Robert A. Bjork, Thomas D. Wickens
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/432236 266-276 First published online: 1 September 2005


Recall of print material benefits from spacing repetitions of that material, an effect often attributed to varied encodings induced by changes in contextual cues. We examined an alternative explanation: retrieving earlier presentations during later presentations strengthens memory traces, the more so the greater the difficulty of such retrieval. In four experiments we found that (a) study-phase retrieval contributes to the benefits of spacing and (b) inducing variation via changes in ad formatting and content can be counterproductive at long spacing intervals, apparently because such changes decrease the likelihood that earlier presentations will be retrieved during later presentations.

  • Advertising
  • Cognitive Processes
  • Learning
  • Memory
  • Experimental Design and Analysis (ANOVA)
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