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Automated Working Memory Assessment (AWMA) - Health Research


Diabetes | Anxiety



Children of mothers with Type 1 diabetes have lower Verbal WM (using the AWMA) compared to controls.

Reference: Temple, R.C., Hardiman, M., Martinez-Cengotitabengoa, M.T., Alloway, T.P., (2010).  Working memory of offspring of women with type 1 diabetes. Diabetic Medicine, 27, 167.




A recent study demonstrated that the association between trait anxiety and academic performance was significantly mediated by verbal working memory (accounted for 51%) as measured by the AWMA.

Reference: Owens et al (2008). Processing efficiency theory in children: working memory as a mediator between trait anxiety and academic performance. Anxiety, Stress, and Coping, 21, 417-430.

Romanian translation of the AWMA

In a study investigating the relationship between trait anxiety and working memory in young children, high anxious children performed worse than low anxious children on verbal working memory tasks, but not on visuo-spatial working memory tasks.

Reference: Visu-Petra, L, Cheie, L, Benga, O, & Alloway, T.P. (2011). Effects of anxiety on simple retention and memory updating in young children. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 35, 38-47.


A study on relationship between anxiety and memory updating in a sample of high- and low-trait-anxious preschoolers found that in the visuo-spatial working memory task, accuracy was related to children's age and IQ, but no anxiety-related differences were found.

Reference: Visu-Petra et al. (2010). Anxiety and visual-spatial memory updating in young children: An investigation using emotional facial expressions. Cognition & Emotion, 24, 223-240.


This study examined the effects of age and trait anxiety on span accuracy (effectiveness) and response timing (efficiency) measures from word and digit span performance in a preschool sample.

Reference: Visu-Petra et al. (2009). Processing efficiency in preschoolers’ memory span: Individual differences related to age and anxiety. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 103, 30-48.





Key Information


AWMA provides a practical and convenient way for teachers and psychologists to screen for significant working memory problems from childhood to early adulthood


Dr Tracy Packiam Alloway

Publication Year


Age Range

4 to 22 years


Individual - Screener: 5 to 7 mins; Short form: 10 to 15 mins; Long form: 45 mins

Qualification Code


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