Presque WHO?!

by: Bailey Crocker

Why I chose Presque Vu:

I chose this topic because this phenomenon happens to me a lot. I thought it would be helpful to know why this happens and what causes it. As I researched on it, I found that it isn't uncommon, and that it happens frequently to people. So if you were to experience this, you shouldn't worry, and just let it pass.

About Presque Vu:

Presque Vu, or Tip-of-the-tounge (TOT) phenomenon, is where a person feels as if they are on the edge of an epiphany, but they never reach it. People who experience this often recall a certain part of the word, like the first letter or how many syllables it has, but they fail to think of the exact word.

The Brain

-Instead of the brain moving directly from processing concepts to a name, to physically generating speech, they found that the parts of brain processing each step activate at the same time, causing the person to get caught on the word.
-Several parts of the brain increase activity during TOT, like the anterior cingulate, right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and right inferior cortex
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Research and Psychologists:

The first empirical research was by psychologists Roger Brown and David McNeill. They used different steps to their research:
First they gathered other people's personal experiences. Next they designed an investigation to test on a handful of people. Finally they began a full study, using many participants. When someone would call out that they were having a TOT, Brown and McNeill would ask them a series of questions about what they were experiencing and record the answers. In their findings, they discovered that the participants were more likely to remember something about the word, rather than nothing at all.

Fun Facts:

-Koreans say a word is “sparkling at the end of my tongue,” while Estonians describe the missing word as being “at the head of the tongue.”
-If you enter a TOT state, you can also try making a fist with your left hand to improve recall.