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PSYC 2650
Dan Meegan

PSYC2650 Lecture Notes Oct. 9, 2012 - Long-term memory: Episodic – episodes of one’s life; encoding (how things get into long-term memory in first place), retrieval;; Semantic – storage - History: Herman Ebbinghaus “On Memory” (1885) during time when introspection used to understand mind - Before Ebbinghaus studied memory, most obvious way for people at time to study memory was to start with formed ideas and look backward to find source o Ebbinghaus studied how memory developed + was able to bring many variables under scientific control - Experimental control through: o To-be-remembered stimuli no prior experience with it, meaningless (no semantic associations), i.e. nonsense syllables (consonant-vowel-consonant, i.e. Kag) o Independent variables = retention interval (long = bad for memory, i.e. do all studying early and set it aside till exam), list length (# of nonsense syllables), extended practice (over- learning), serial order  Extended practice = after learning list until 2 perfect recitals, rehearsed list 30 more times  using 24hr RI, savings in relearning the over-learned list = 64% vs. 34% for normal learning  serial order = strength of association between adjacent items on list  direction of associations = forward and backward  i.e. (1) MEV, (2) GOR, (3) DUX forward = would presenting MEV evoke GOR?; backward = would presenting GOR evoke MEV?  Learned 3 lists of 8 stimuli, then relearned each list under different conditions: same order = 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 o Reversed order = 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 o Random order = 5 2 6 8 1 3 7 4 o Does order affect relearning phase?  If forward associations exist, then savings on relearning same list would be > savings for random list o If backward associations exist, then savings on relearning reversed list would be > savings for random list  Savings expected: same = 33%, reversed = 12%, random = 0% o Conclusion = forward and backward associations exist, but forward are stronger o Dependent variables = retention savings o i.e. study list of nonsense syllables measure study time for 2 perfect recitations (measure of time, instead of memory accuracy) independent variable = retention interval (RI; range 20 min. – 31 days) relearn list after RI and re-measure study for time for 2 recitations  calculating retention savings: savings = (study time before RI – study time after RI)/study time before RI  should have proportion that captures how much less time it takes to study nd st 2 time than 1 time o have 64% savings from having exposure to items before captures how much memory you have  “forgetting function” retention of nonsense syllables measured by savings in relearning  retention decreases as retention interval (time between initial learning and retention line) increases, but rate of forgetting slows down - strengths of Ebbinghaus’ approach: meticulous selection of stimuli o defining relevant independent variables o innovative dependent measure to measure strength of memory traces - problems: some nonsense syllables may have meaning (i.e. dux = ducks) o Only used one subject (himself) representativeness? Expertise? Bias? - Contributions: encoding extended practice, list length o Storage forward and backward associations (storage based on order) o Retrieval retention interval Oct. 11, 2012 - Memory encoding: factors that affect whether something becomes stored in long-term memory inc. elaboration and intention Elaboration – quality (not just quantity) of practice is important for memory encoding (deep processing) o Involves embellishing a to-be-remembered item with additional info o Memory = interconnections of topics o i.e. remember simple sentences like “The doctor hated the lawyer”  2 study conditions: elaborative = generate elaboration “because of the malpractice suit”; control = just read and study sentence  Memory test = complete the sentence “the doctor hated ____”  Results = 72% recall @ elaborative, 57% recall @ control elaborative is better  Recall of elaboration might lead to recall of word when word could otherwise not be recalled (boost in elaborate condition) o Provides a somewhat “cued recall” (vs. free recall) - Levels of processing (Creek and Lock) Deep processing – meaningful; really think about material leads to better memory (vs. shallow processing) o i.e. task = read pairs of associated words 2 types of association = semantic (deep; i.e. tulip-flower) and rhymes (shallow; i.e. tower-flower)  results = 81% recall @ semantic, 70% recall @ rhymes o self-reference = kind, rigid, brave, selfish does this word have an “e”? (shallow) does this word describe you? (deep)  self-reference words that describe = almost perfect recall o intuition about intention (?) o i.e. subjects saw list of 24 words at 3 words/s 2 task conditions: deep = rate pleasantness of words; shallow = check for “e” or “g” in words  2 learning conditions: intentional = you will be given a memory test; incidental = naive about memory test (didn’t know about it)  Rate pleasantness = greater recall on memory test (almost no difference between intention/incidental)  intention did not matter, depth of processing matters o intention can have a positive effect on memory, effects often indirect when there is intention, there is more likely to be elaboration - long-term memory retrieval when fail to retrieve something possible that it has been lost/erased OR it’s “in there” somewhere but can’t retrieve it - memories forgotten but not lost i.e. subjects studied 20 #-noun pairs (i.e. 43-dog) to some criterion 2 wks later given memory test (43-__?) o able to recall 75% of items; remaining 25% used again 2 study conditions (study list once): unchanged = “43-dog” (cued recall); changed = “43-house”  2 memory test (immediately after study) = 78% recall at unchanged, 43% recall @ changed Recall – subjects asked to generate previously-studied items cued recall = i.e. paired associates, given pairs or sentences of info then given part of cue to recall rest o Generally harder than recognition  Not always recognition test = circle names recognized as person who was famous before 1950 (i.e. Doyle, Ferguson, Thomas)  Recall test = author of Sherlock Holmes stories, Sir Arthur Conan ___.  42% recall due to prior knowledge + sentence context (elaborative cue) o i.e. short answer test not always, could be application to multiple choice question(s) too Recognition – info presented and asked was test item a previously-studied item? (i.e. multiple choice test) - Factors that contribute to failures to retrieve info stored in long-term memory: Encoding-retrieval correspondence –retrieval in context similar to encoding = easier to retrieve  successful retrieval of info in long-term might be contingent upon correspondence between encoding and retrieval conditions Encoding-specificity principle – (same thing as correspondence) probability of recalling item at test depends on similarity of its encoding at test to its original encoding at study  i.e. phase 1 = learn pairs of words for memory test for 2 word (i.e. train- black, remember black) o phase 2 = generate 4 free-associates to words (i.e. given white and generate snow, black, wool, pure) o phase 3 = recognition test which of 4 free-associates was a to-be- remembered word from phase 1?  54% correct o phase 4 = cued-recall test (retrieval conditions look similar to encoding conditions) train-___?  61% correct o dissimilar in phase 1 and 3 = poor recognition; similar in phase 1 and 4 = good recall  memory better when test conditions match study condition  study and test environment (i.e. changing rooms, underwater vs. on shore)  emotional context of study and test (i.e. eye-witness testimony)  state of inebriation/intoxication at study and test Interference – other memories may interfere with retrieval of to-be-remembered info Proactive – when learning of new material is disrupted by previously-learned material Retroactive – when learning of new material disrupts memory for previously-learned material - Lab 4: Encoding specificity encoding = paired associates strong semantic association = wasp- sting; weak = cowboy-chair) o retrieval = encoding context old (same context as encoding): strong = wasp-STING; wake = cowboy-CHAIR  new (different context than encoding): strong = rocking-CHAIR or bee-STING; weak = river-STING or mug-CHAIR o predictions: recognition test = did you see word in CAPS earlier?  old > new  old/strong (wasp-STING) > new/strong (bee-STING)  old/weak (cowboy-CHAIR) > new/weak (mug-CHAIR)  old/weak (cowboy-CHAIR) > new/strong (rocking-CHAIR)  old context (faster recall/shorter response time)> strong association  intuition tells us intention and strong association would have a big effect not true, context has bigger effect Tip-of-the-tongue – have concept clearly in mind, but can’t come up with right word to describe it o another example of failed retrieval o (Brown & McNeil) read out dictionary definitions of rare words and asked subjects to identify words defined  i.e. navigational instruments used to determine positions of stars sextant  type of caving done on whale bone, often depicting whaling ships or whales scrimshaw  Russian sled drawn by 3 horses troika  If T-O-T, tried to guess initial letter, # of syllables, and what it sounds like 57% correct with initial letter (above chance)  Scrimshaw = something (sounds) like Sanskrit Oct. 16, 2012 - Semantic vs. episodic (some info from past)memory stored knowledge about things in the world o Most directly related to storage - Organization of semantic memory: individual concepts represented as “nodes” in memory network (neural networks) o Concepts/nodes that are semantically associated are interconnected differs between people (depending on individual interpretation/experience) o Degree of semantic relatedness between 2 concepts is represented by strength of the interconnection between their nodes - When one concept is activated, activation “spreads” to other concepts whose nodes have strong interconnections with activated node - Evidence for network organization semantic priming Lexical decision task – 2 letter strings shown in succession (some words, some non-words) are both strings words? (Yes or no)  Response time faster if the 2 letter-strings are related to each other - Limits of spreading activation: activated nodes have a fixed capacity for emitting activation more interconnections that node has = less activation spread to any interconnected node o Evidence = Fan effect Fan effect – learn set of sentences 1 association = i.e. the doctor is in the bank; 2 associations = i.e. the lawyer is in the park, and the lawyer is in the church o Recognition test = was this sentence in the learning set? Oct. 18, 2012 – MISSED LECTURE - (video) amnesic Mike hippocampus damage = memories before injury retained; almost incomplete inability to add new memories o Other cognitive abilities intact o Car accident = back fracture medical complications = 24 hr seizure coma for 2 wks  2 min. seizure few weeks later coma for 2 wks again = damage to hippocampus (not complete damage if were complete, wouldn’t even know he had amnesia) o Writes everything down in detail o Hippocampus + other structures consolidates memory Long-term potentiation (LTP; electric phenomenon in hippocampus) – reflects hippocampus’ role in memory’s consolidation  Similarly in cerebral cortex  How memories are stored in the brain - (video) amnesic Leonard (fictional) can’t form new long-term memories, can’t remember anything from past, and can only rely on short-term memory Amnesia – caused by head injury, cerebral vascular incident (i.e. stroke), epilectic activity, electroconvulsive therapy, neurosurgery, tumors, chronic alcohol abuse, Alzheimer’s disease, etc. Anterograde amnesia – inability to learn new things or remember info learned after onset of amnesia; can’t create new long-term memories always re-introduced to people Retrograde amnesia – difficulty in remembering events that occurred before onset of amnesia  In reality doesn’t work as smoothly (?) o With head injury, often both anterograde and retrograde amnesia recovers with time (temporary)  Permanent loss of memory for events preceding injury (retrograde) and occurring during time of anterograde ???  Symptoms not limited to memory loss st - Figure ???  Case study: how memory loss happens in case of severe head trauma (1 line = 5 mnths after; 2 = 8 mnths after; 3 = 16 mnths after) - HM was severe epileptic whose seizures originated in medial temporal lobe had bilateral medial temporal lobectomy (neurosurgery, 1950’s) to stop seizures o Surgery successful in terms of curing seizures, but caused severe anterograde amnesia o got severe anterograde amnesia + retrograde amnesia for 3 yrs before surgery (totally lost 3 yrs of his past after surgery) Korsakoff’s syndrome – chronic alcohol abuse can lead to vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency causes brain damage, esp. In areas involved in memory (anterograde and retrograde amnesia) Alzheimer’s disease – winder range of memory impairments than other amnesic populations o steady deterioration, with memory impairment in early stages being followed by other cognitive impairments (cognitive consequences) o may not just affect long-term memory; more wide spread = more wide spread damage - cognitive psychologists interested in amnesia because assume memory = too complex to be single process in info-processing model (i.e. short-term vs. long-term memory) double dissociations o single memory system if damaged = first thing to go is long-term memory because it’s more challenging o P1 = no memory process A, but memory process B i.e. short-term memory intact , but long-term memory not  P2 = memory process A, but no memory process B i.e. long-term memory intact but short-term not  P3 = no memory process A or B (widespread brain damage affecting multiple
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