Individual differences in the gesture effect on working memory

Lars Marstaller*, Hana Burianová

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    33 Citations (Scopus)


    Co-speech gestures have been shown to interact with working memory (WM). However, no study has investigated whether there are individual differences in the effect of gestures on WM. Combining a novel gesture/no-gesture task and an operation span task, we examined the differences in WM accuracy between individuals who gestured and individuals who did not gesture in relation to their WM capacity. Our results showed individual differences in the gesture effect on WM. Specifically, only individuals with low WM capacity showed a reduced WM accuracy when they did not gesture. Individuals with low WM capacity who did gesture, as well as high-capacity individuals (irrespective of whether they gestured or not), did not show the effect. Our findings show that the interaction between co-speech gestures and WM is affected by an individual's WM load.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)496-500
    Number of pages5
    JournalPsychonomic Bulletin and Review
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


    • Gesture
    • Individual differences in memory capacity
    • Working memory


    Dive into the research topics of 'Individual differences in the gesture effect on working memory'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this