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Studying Memory: Level of Information Processing Model
- Short term>sensory memory
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Studying Memory: Tri-Store Information Processing Model
The Atkinson-Schiffrin (1968): sensory register, short-term store, long-term memory.
Encoding: Getting Information In
Requires attention & effort (though some info automatically processed , ex. route to school, place of a pic on a page)
Encoding by meaning
Semantic processing best in long run
Encoding by images
- the basis of many memory aids
- (Mnemonics) ex. peg-word(one bun two shoe, order, things that resemble what you have already remembered), method of loci(imaging one object, seeing things on it) non order, imagery(associate name with how it sounds)
Encoding by organization
- Break down complex information into broad concepts by subdividing them into categories and subcategories.
- - Chunking: ex. 1-7-7-6-1-4-9-2-1-8-1-2-1-9-4-1 vs. 1776 1492 1812 1941
- Acronyms: another way of chunking, ex. HOMES
- - Hierarchies: ex. hierarchies & concept maps
Storage: Retaining Information
Storage is at the heart of memory. Three stores of memory.
Importance of Rehearsal & Spacing
- Ebbinghaus studied rehearsal by
- using nonsense syllables:
- TUV YOF GEK XOZ
- The more times the syllables were practiced on Day 1, the fewer repetitions were required to remember them on Day 2
as rehearsal increases, relearning time decreases
Info retained better if rehearsed over time.
Serial Position Effect
- First and last items
- 50 on a list, have a40
- better chance of being remembered than middle
Middle is the most vulnerable. ( study middle)
Large capacity, short duration
During of sensory memory varies for the different senses.
- Iconic(.5 sec. long)
- Echoic(3-4 sec long)
- Hepatic <1 sec long
Importance of Attention
Since we cannot focus on all the sensory info received, we selectively attend only to info that is important to us (1-2 bits at a time) & process it into working memory
Short term/Working memory
Limited capacity and short duration(20 sec)
Capacity may be increased by chunking.
Essentially unlimited capacity & duration.
- Is it “etched” into brain?
- • Loftus & Loftus (1980): few brain stimulated patients report flashbacks.
- • Lashley (1950): even after removing parts of the brain, rats retain partial memory of the maze.
Memory= Synaptic Changes
- Kandel & Schwartz (1982): serotonin release from sea slugs’ neurons increased after conditioning. An increase in neurotransmitter release or in receptors on the receiving neuron indicates strengthening of synapses.
- Long-Term Potentiation (LTP): synaptic enhancement after learning
Types of Long-term Memories
- Explicit Memory: facts (semantic) and experiences (episodic) that one can consciously know and declare.
- Implicit memory: actions (procedural) learned unconsciously.
Some Brain Structures Involved in Memory
- Cerebellum – part of hindbrain. Processes implicit memories.
- Hippocampus – part of limbic system. Processes explicit memories. Deteriorates in Alzheimer’s patients.
The Case of H.M. in 1953
After hippocampus removed to control epileptic seizures, HM could not make new memories. This is called anterograde amnesia (vs. retrograde amnesia) and indicates that hippocampus necessary to form (not retrieve) Long-term memories.
Further testing showed that HM is unable to make new declarative (explicit) memories but he can form new procedural (implicit) memories.
Retrieval:Getting Information Out
- In recall, person retrieves info using effort.
- ex. fill-in-the blank: The capital of Egypt is ____.
- In recognition, person identifies info presented. ex. multiple-choice: Which is the capital of Egypt?
- a. Tehranb.Damascusc.Cairo
- Which is easier?
- Retrieval cues helpful.
Retrieval Cues: Priming
- Memories are held in storage by a web of associations. These associations are like anchors that help retrieve memory.
- To retrieve a specific memory from the web of associations, you must first activate one of the strands that leads to it. This process is called priming
Stress hormones and Memory
- Heightened emotions (stress-related or otherwise) make for stronger memories.
- Flashbulb memories are clear memories of emotionally significant moments or events
- When recalling info, best to be in moderate level of arousal: The Yerkes Dawdson law.
Retrieval Cues: Context Effects
- Scuba divers recall more words underwater if they learned the list underwater, while they recall more words on land if they learned that list on land (Godden & Baddeley, 1975).
- After learning to move a mobile by kicking, infants most strongly respond when retested in the same context rather than in a different one (Rovee-Collier, 1993).
Retrieval Cues: State/Mood Effects
- We usually recall experiences that are consistent with our current mood (state-dependent memory). Emotions, or moods, serve as retrieval cues.
- Our memories are mood-congruent.
- An inability to retrieve information due to poor
Poor durability of stored memories leads to their decay. Ebbinghaus showed this with his forgetting curve.
- Levels of Processing Theory: The deeper the level at which info processed, the more likely it will not be forgotten.
- Interference Theory: Learning new information may disrupt retrieval of older information (retroactive), and info previously learned could interfere with learning new information (proactive).
Sleep prevents retroactive interference. Therefore, it leads to better recall
- While tapping our memories, we filter or fill in missing pieces of information to make our recall more coherent.
- Misinformation Effect: Incorporating misleading information into one's memory of an event.
- Eyewitnesses reconstruct their memories when questioned about the event.
- Many psychotherapists believe early childhood sexual abuse results in repressed memories.
- However, Loftus showed that if false memories (ex.
- 14 lost in mall) are implanted in individuals, they
- Group A (hit) construct (fabricate) their memories.
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