We examined the mechanisms underlying skilled anticipation and recognition in a dynamic, interactive, and temporally constrained domain. Skilled and less-skilled participants viewed dynamic film stimuli, anticipated event outcome, and provided immediate retrospective verbal reports. Previously viewed and novel sequences were then presented in film or point-light display format. Participants made recognition judgements and again gave retrospective verbal reports on their thought processes. Skilled participants demonstrated superior anticipation accuracy and were more sensitive in distinguishing previously seen from novel stimuli than less-skilled participants. Skilled participants utilised more complex memory representations than less-skilled individuals, as indicated by references in their retrospective reports to more evaluation and prediction statements. The representations activated during anticipation were more complex than those for recognition judgements in both groups. Findings are discussed with reference to long-term working memory theory.
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