The effects of interference and retention delay on temporal generalization performance

Atten Percept Psychophys. 2010 Oct;72(7):1903-12. doi: 10.3758/APP.72.7.1903.


This study investigated the effect of forgetting of the standard duration on temporal discrimination in a generalization task. In two experiments, participants were given a temporal generalization task with or without a retention delay between the learning of the standard duration and the testing of the comparison durations. During this delay, they either performed or did not perform an interference task. Results failed to reveal any effect of 15-min and 24-h retention delays on time judgments (Experiment 1). However, when an interference task was performed during the 15-min delay (Experiment 2), there was a subjective shortening effect, indicating that the standard duration was judged shorter with than without an interference task. These findings suggest that when an interference task occurs immediately after initial temporal encoding, it affects the process of consolidation in reference memory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attention*
  • Color Perception*
  • Discrimination, Psychological*
  • Female
  • Generalization, Psychological*
  • Humans
  • Judgment
  • Male
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual*
  • Retention, Psychology*
  • Time Perception*