Effects of Color on the Buildup and Resolution of Proactive Interference in Working Memory


  • Rong Liu Elementary Education college, Capital Normal University, Beijing, 100048, China
  • Weichun Du Primary School Affiliated to Chaoyang Normal School, Beijing, 100020, China
  • Lixuan Feng Elementary Education college, Capital Normal University, Beijing, 100048, China
  • Chenyuan Zhao Huang Cheng Gen Primary School, Beijing, 100034, China
  • Fengxia Su Elementary Education college, Capital Normal University, Beijing, 100048, China
  • Sixu Qiao Elementary Education college, Capital Normal University, Beijing, 100048, China




The “color superiority effect” was confirmed by the research of color on forgetting, which showed that proactive interference (PI) has less impact on colored items than gray ones. Color could directly affect the buildup of PI, leading to reduced levels of interference, or controlled processes that resolve PI. However, the effects of red and green on memory were inconsistent. Using Recent-Probes task, the current study explored how the red and green color influenced to the buildup phase (i.e., 200ms after the onset of probe) and resolution phase (i.e. 800ms after the onset of probe) of PI. Results revealed that the reaction times of green words were significantly shorter than the red words under 200ms. There were no significant differences between the red and green words under 500ms and 800ms. It indicated that green might shortened the reaction times for the PI buildup, while red prolonged it. However, on the resolution phase of PI, green words were less effective than red words. These findings offered some new information for the underlying mechanisms that modulate the interactions between color and memory.


Color, Proactive interference, Buildup and resolution phase, Working memory


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How to Cite

Liu, R., Du, W., Feng, L., Zhao, C., Su, F., & Qiao, S. (2020). Effects of Color on the Buildup and Resolution of Proactive Interference in Working Memory. Journal of Psychological Research, 2(4), 10–17. https://doi.org/10.30564/jpr.v2i4.2388


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