Memory is one of the most important and basal functions of human cognition: without memory there would be neither learning nor recognition of people or places. Although our knowledge about memory has grown immensely in the last 135 years since Hermann Ebbinghaus' (1885) fundamental work Über das Gedächtnis (On Memory), there are still a number of exciting questions for research.
Meta-memory comprises our assumptions as well as our knowledge of our own memory processes. Meta-memory is extremely important in daily life, as it helps to guide rational behaviour: If I know that I tend to forget things when I go shopping, I use a grocery list. If, on the other hand, I am good at remembering faces, then it may be useful for me to link information with faces, etc. In metacognition research, we investigate how judgements or predictions about one's own memory performance are formed and what information they are based on. Thereby, we are combining meta-memory research with a judgment psychological perspective and methodology for the first time in a DFG project (Bröder & Undorf, 2019; Undorf & Bröder, 2020; Undorf, Bröder & Söllner, 2018).
Memory judgements are always comprised of both information that is actually remembered as well as guessing or judgement processes under uncertainty. If I do not remember something exactly, is it still likely that I have seen it? The processes themselves as well as their composition are initially not observable, but they can be captured individually by suitable formal models. In this regard, different approaches oppose each other, which assume either continuous signals or discrete states as representations of memory. The research group is actively involved this scientific controversy regarding the better model class (Bröder & Malejka, 2017; Bröder & Schütz, 2009; Bröder et al., 2013; Kellen et al., 2013; Malejka & Bröder, 2016; 2019; Starns et al., 2020).
Source memory is the memory of the source from which we learned information or of contextual features that were present during learning. On the one hand, the problem of separating real memory processes from judgement processes does also concern source memory (Bröder & Meiser, 2007; Meiser & Bröder, 2002; Vogt & Bröder, 2007). On the other hand, it is sometimes precisely the judgement and reconstruction processes that reveal something about the constructive nature of memory (e.g..B. Bröder, Noethen, Schütz & Bay, 2007). At the same time, source memory can be used to gain information about how information is represented by contextual features (Arnold et al., 2020).