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Turning back the hands of time: Autobiographical memories in dementia cued by a museum setting


Miles, Amanda N., Fischer-Mogensen, Lise, Nielsen, Nadia H., Hermansen, Stine, Berntsen, Dorthe


Consciousness and Cognition: An International Journal, Volume: 22, No.: 3, Pages.: 1074-1081

Year of Publication



The current study examined the effects of cuing autobiographical memory retrieval in 12 older participants with dementia through immersion into a historically authentic environment that recreated the material and cultural context of the participants’ youth. Participants conversed in either an everyday setting (control condition) or a museum setting furnished in early twentieth century style (experimental condition) while being presented with condition matched cues. Conversations were coded for memory content based on an adapted version of Levine, Svoboda, Hay, Winocur, and Moscovitch (2002) coding scheme. More autobiographical memories were recalled in the museum setting, and these memories were more elaborated, more spontaneous and included especially more internal (episodic) details compared to memories in the control condition. The findings have theoretical and practical implications by showing that the memories retrieved in the museum setting were both quantitatively and qualitatively different from memories retrieved during a control condition. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved). (journal abstract)

Bibtex Citation

@article{Miles_2013, doi = {10.1016/j.concog.2013.07.008}, url = {}, year = 2013, month = {sep}, publisher = {Elsevier {BV}}, volume = {22}, number = {3}, pages = {1074--1081}, author = {Amanda N. Miles and Lise Fischer-Mogensen and Nadia H. Nielsen and Stine Hermansen and Dorthe Berntsen}, title = {Turning back the hands of time: Autobiographical memories in dementia cued by a museum setting}, journal = {Consciousness and Cognition} }


autobiographical, autobiographical memory, cues, cuing, cuing effects, dementia, geriatrics, memory, museums, retrieval

Countries of Study


Types of Dementia

Dementia (general / unspecified)

Types of Study

Non randomised controlled trial

Type of Outcomes




Type of Interventions

Non-pharmacological Treatment

Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

Arts and Music Interventions (including Art and Music Therapy), Reminiscence and Anxiety Therapies