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Long-term memory for own- and other-race faces

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Zhao,  M
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

/persons/resource/persons83840

Bülthoff,  I
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Zhao, M., & Bülthoff, I. (2014). Long-term memory for own- and other-race faces. Poster presented at 37th European Conference on Visual Perception (ECVP 2014), Beograd, Serbia.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-3277-1
Abstract
Many studies have demonstrated better recognition of own- than other-race faces. However, little is known about whether memories of unfamiliar own- and other-race faces decay similarly with time. We addressed this question by probing participants’ memory about own- and other-race faces both immediately after learning (immediate test) and one week later (delayed test). In both learning and test phases, participants saw short movie wherein a person was talking in front of the camera (the sound was turned off). Two main results emerged. First, we observed a cross-race deficit in recognizing other-race faces in both immediate and delayed tests, but the cross-race deficit was reduced in the latter. Second, recognizing faces immediately after learning was not better than recognizing them one week later. Instead, overall performance was even better at delayed test than at immediate test. This result was mainly due to improved recognition for other-race female faces, which showed comparatively low performance when tested immediately. These results demonstrate that memories of both own- and other-race faces sustain for a relative long time. Although other-race faces are less well recognized than own-race faces, they seem to be maintained in long-term memory as well as, and even better than, own-race faces.