Date of Conferral







Stephen Burgess


This study examined the short term memory (STM) difference of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technologists versus non-MRI technologists. Human and animal studies have indicated that residual magnetic fields have caused changes within the cerebral structure. Research on residual magnetic fields and their effect on STM is still at its infancy. A quasi-experimental design was used to determine if any significant difference existed between the STM of MRI technologists (n = x) and a control population sample (n = x). The STM of both groups was assessed with the use of the Rivermead Behavioural Memory Test-Third Edition. Solicitation of the participants was from a national MRI organization, the American Society of Radiologic Technologists, and community workers within the profession. The control group of participants was solicited through community board postings. Only the New York/New Jersey metro area and the New Hampshire/Maine area participants were used for this study. These participants were of various age ranges, genders, and educational levels. ANOVA and regression analyses were used to analyze the data. The study showed mixed results, indicating no significant STM difference in the overall memory scores of both groups F (1, 80) =3.061, p =..084, but it did show a significant difference in STM when it came to prospective memory, memory of planned events. These findings illustrate a need for further research in this area. Expanding the geographical reach and sample size could clarify the role of MRI on STM. The results of this study suggest that procedures that limit the exposure of the MRI technologists to the residual magnetic fields surrounding MRI machines could yield a reduction in loss of prospective memory.