Individual Differences and Correlates of Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory
Highly superior autobiographical memory (HSAM) is a recently identified ability that has been difficult to explain with existing memory science. The present study measured HSAM participants' and age/gender-matched controls' on a number of behavioural measures to test three main hypotheses: imaginative absorption, emotional arousal, and sleep. HSAM participants were significantly higher than controls on the dispositions absorption and fantasy proneness. These two dispositions also were associated with a measure of HSAM ability within the hyperthymesia participants. The emotional-arousal hypothesis yielded only weak support. The sleep hypothesis was not supported in terms of quantity, but sleep quality may be a small factor worthy of further research. Other individual differences are also documented using a predominantly exploratory analysis. Speculative pathways describing how the tendencies to absorb and fantasise could lead to enhanced autobiographical memory are discussed.
(2016). Individual Differences and Correlates of Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory. Memory, 24(7), 961-978.
Available at: https://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/17614