Working Reference Memory

The radial-arm maze can be used to distinguish between working memory, defined as memory with changing contents, as opposed to reference memory, defined as memory with fixed contents. The procedure is to leave some arms of the maze without bait. Entries into these arms would be reference memory errors since their status as unbaited arms is unchanging. The task for the animal is to retrieve the baits from the other arms which are baited once at the beginning of the session. Re-entries into these arms are working memory errors since their status has changed from

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