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Lecture 9


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PSYC 100
Sherri Atwood

1 Memory Encoding – input from the environment gets encoded into neural/electrical code • getting information into memory Storage – retaining information in either working or long term memory • retaining information in memory Retrieval – getting information back out of memory • recalling or using previously encoded and stored information Memory is learning that has persisted over time • information that has been stored over time and can be retrieved over time • memory is the capacity to retain and retrieve information Memory is a reconstructive process • reconstruction of things that have already occurred Memories are complex clusters of information • different pieces of information are processed separately and stored in different locations distributed across the brain ◦ all these sites participate in the representation of the event or concepts as a whole Hippocampus binds diverse aspects of a memory at time of formation • even though stored in different sites, memory is retrieved as one entity The Case of HM: most of hippocampus and all of amygdala removed • cannot put working memory into long-term memory ◦ shows that the hippocampus makes short-term memories into long-term ones Hippocampus is responsible for memory, but different kinds of memory are dependent on different parts of the brain [HM could unconsciously remember motor skill, but not fact or event] Dual track mind or processing [HM has motor memory, some spatial memory, and episodic memory] In STM tasks, areas in frontal lobes are active Procedural Memory – type of long-term memory of how to perform different actions and skills • operates below consciousness eg. riding your bike • located in the hippocampus Declarative Memory – formation of long-term declarative memory (knowledge of factual information) • hippocampus plays central role Explicit Memory – conscious, intentional recollection of previous experiences and information • eg. remembering the time of an appointment, recollecting an event from years ago • visual cortex, frontal lobe, and temporal lobes are active 2 Memory Implicit Memory – doesn’t seem to involve visual cortex • memory influences our behaviour without conscious awareness (eg. early childhood experiences, procedural tasks. From Formation to Storage → an area in the brain may be active during formation but these memories are stored in another location (eg. formation activates hippocampus, but stored or sent to parts of the cerebral cortex) Forming memories involves changes in chemical structure of neurons • STM – changes in neurons only temporarily alter the neuron’s ability to release NTs that carry messages between cells • LTM – there is a chemical glue (PKN zeda molecule) that permanently makes it so a set of neurons fire together (hence “wired together”) Long-term Potentiation (LTP) – main neural mechanism by which memory is stored in the brain • strengthening of neural firing • during LTP, dendrites grow and branch out and certain synapses increase in number (stimulation is increasing the strength of synaptic responsiveness, especially in hippocampus) ◦ certain receiving neurons become more responsive to transmitting neurons so those synaptic pathways become more excitable • changes take time so LTMs remain vulnerable because they are undergoing consolidation/stabilization which can take years • LTMs then solidify LTP may underlie all forms of learning and memory ** LTP is the biological mechanism of LTM Model 1: Associative Networks Many models of memory represent the contents of long-term semantic memory as an immense network or grid of concepts and the relations among them (like a mind-map) Model 2: Neural Networks Parallel processing – different nodes are activated at the same time to make a concept come to mind. Each concept is represented by a pattern or set of nodes that activate simultaneously. • eg. node 4 with node 42 = concept of “red.” But node 4 with node 459 = concept of “chair.” ◦ nodes are distributed throughout the brain and fire in parallel at each instance and spread activation to other nodes, concepts and information to make thoughts arise Models of Memory: Information-processing models • cognitive processes involve computer metaphor (encoding, storing, and retrieving information) ◦ we get information into the brain (encode) ◦ retain that information (store it) ◦ pull it out later (retrieve it) 3 Memory The Component or Three-Box Model of Memory • sensory input from the environment is recorded as fleeting sensory memory • information is processed in short-term memory • information is encoded into long-term memory for later retrieval The briefest form of memory storage: Sensory Memory, Sensory Registrar • immediate, initial recording of sensory information in the memory system • entryway to STM or LTM • 0.5sec for visual, 2.0sec for auditory in highly accurate form until we decide if it’s worth it – if not it’s deleted Iconic (What You See) Memory – a fleeting photographic memory Echoic Memory – auditory memory STM – a limited-capacity memory system involved in the retention of information for brief periods • information needs to be encoded (eg. visual encoding into mental images) • also used to hold information retrieved from LTM for temporary use (referred as working memory) ◦ working memory – STM + mental processes that control retrieval information from LTM and lets you interpret information appropriately for given tasks STM is now seen more as working memory: a mental workspace that actively and simultaneously processes different types of information and supports other cognitive functions like problem-solving, planning, and interacts with LTM • active processing of information, associates new and old information, solves problems ◦ like a busy librarian – categorizing, cross-referencing material Encoding: once information leaves sensory memory, it must be represented by a code to be retained in STM and then LTM. • codes take several forms: sound (phonological encoding by saying words to yourself), meaning (semantic encoding), visual (mental picture that retains that image) • codes do not have to conform to original stimulus (eg. reading words, but using semantic encoding rather than visual) 4 Memory Semantic Encoding is Deep Processing – you’ll remember something more if it was semantically encoded Automatic Encoding: Information about frequency, spatial location • sequence and timing are encoded automatically • no intention, minimal attention, effortless, accurate (eg. remembering where you sit in class) Effortful Encoding: Encoding initiated intentionally and requires conscious effort • eg. names, phone numbers, passwords, test content requires rehearsing, lists, notes • to retain information, may have to select main parts, label concepts, or make associations Maintenance Rehearsal: extending duration of information retention by rehearsing/repeati
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