[en] We reexplored the relationship between new word learning and verbal short-term memory (STM) capacities, by distinguishing STM for serial order information, item recall, and item recognition. STM capacities for order information were estimated via a serial order reconstruction task. A rhyme probe recognition task assessed STM for item recognition. Item recall capacities were derived from the proportion of item errors in an immediate serial recall task. In Experiment 1, strong correlations were observed between item recall and item recognition, but not between the item STM tasks and the serial order task, supporting recent theoretical positions that consider that STM for item and serial order rely on distinct capacities. Experiment 2 showed that only the serial order reconstruction task predicted independent variance in a paired associate word - nonword learning task. Our results suggest that STM capacities for serial order play a specific and causal role in learning new phonological information.