Effects of drawing on children's item recall

Laura Davison, Glyn Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)


In four experiments, we used item recall tasks to investigate recent claims that young children's event recall can be facilitated by drawing. In Experiments 1 to 3, children of ages 5 to 8 years were tested 4 h after presentation for recall of a set of 25 items that had been presented in groups on a colored, segmented board. In Experiment 1, recall was enhanced by replacement of the objects on the board as they were recalled, but not by drawing them. In Experiments 2 and 3, drawing the board and objects concurrently with or just prior to verbal recall not only failed to facilitate recall, but significantly reduced the number of items reported by 5- to 6-year-olds. In Experiment 4, drawing again impaired recall of items that had been presented as paired associates. Overall, results indicate that under some conditions drawing can impair children's recall rather than facilitate it, as reported in several recent studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-177
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Experimental Child Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2001


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