EEG oscillations and recognition memory: Theta correlates of memory retrieval and decision making

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Abstract

Studies of memory retrieval have identified electroencephalographic (EEG) correlates of a test item's old–new status, reaction time, and memory load. In the current study, we used a multivariate analysis to disentangle the effects of these correlated variables. During retrieval, power of left-parietal theta (4–8 Hz) oscillations increased in proportion to how well a test item was remembered, and theta in central regions correlated with decision making. We also studied how these oscillatory dynamics complemented event-related potentials. These findings are the first to demonstrate that distinct patterns of theta oscillations can simultaneously relate to different aspects of behavior.

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