The present study explored self-initiated object-location memory in ecological contexts, as aspect of memory that is largely absent from the research literature. Young and older adults memorized objects-location associations they selected themselves or object-location associations provided to them, and elaborated on the strategy they used when selecting the locations themselves. Retrieval took place 30 min and 1 month after encoding. The results showed an age-related decline in self-initiated and provided object-location memory. Older adults benefited from self-initiation more than young adults when tested after 30 min, while the benefit was equal when tested after 1 month. Furthermore, elaboration enhanced memory only in older adults, and only after 30 min. Both age groups used deep encoding strategies on the majority of the trials, but their percentage was lower in older adults. Overall, the study demonstrated the processes involved in self-initiated object-location memory, which is an essential part of everyday functioning.
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- Object-location memory
- encoding strategies
- episodic memory