Abstract

We examined the extent to which individual differences contribute to performance in a task considered to index implicit learning, the Hebb Digits task. Although Hebb Digits learning is considered to be equivalent for those with implicit and explicit knowledge of the repeating digit pattern, this study found that participants who developed explicit knowledge showed learning, whereas those without explicit knowledge did not. Additionally, participants who developed explicit knowledge outperformed participants without explicit knowledge on working memory measures, specifically the Automated Operation Span Task total correct score and absolute score. However, no significant differences were found between those who did and who did not develop explicit knowledge on the Hopkins Verbal Learning Task–Revised, which uses delayed recall to index long-term memory. These results suggest that learning and awareness in the Hebb Digits task relies on individual differences in working memory capacity.

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