According to complementary learning systems accounts of memory, the hippocampus is critically involved in the early representation of newly learned information. After a period of offline memory consolidation in which sleep appears to play a key role, the information becomes predominantly represented by neocortical structures which also enable the involvement of higher level cognitive processes, such as extraction of statistical regularities and generalisation. In this project we train participants on novel words (such as “sleepnule”) designed in such a way that we expect participants to be able to extract linguistic principles encoded in the morphological structure of the words (e.g. that any words ending in the novel affix “-nule” can only refer to a specific semantic category). In the scanner we expose participants to words learned on the day of scanning and to words learned a week earlier, and contrast these to better understand how the brain represents unconsolidated and consolidated information.

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