CHAPTER 8 – VISUAL IMAGERY AND SPATIAL RECOGNITION
Visual imagery – the possibility that imagery is a vial code that we use in long term memory. It is
possible that the ways we store memory in long term memory is in terms of visual code.
Is imagery a viable code to memory?
Mental Rotation and Scanning images –What we’re doing in our minds is what we’ll do in the object
Visual imagery and memory
A. Mnemonics - Memory aid. It helps you to put down information and retrieve it later on. e.g.:
writing down, chunking (chunking is an indication that long term and short term are interacting)
Various techniques used to increase chances of remembering
Many (but not all) use imagery
*Method of loci – involved a well-established set of locations to help you remember something.
* Imagine a series of places that have a specific order to them
* Imagine the items that you have to remember in those locations
* e.g.: mentally construct the route that you normally take and retrieve all the
landmarks that are associated with that route and associate one thing with that list in
each of that location
*routes and items should be well established and routes should be in order
* The Pegword Method – uses imager, numerical order; and rhyming; interactive memory
images seems to improve memory.
*Have a series of words (pegwords) and associate each of the items that we need to
remember with the pegword pair.
*e.g.: one- bun; two –shoe
*form an association that links together the words with regards to the things you need
*two- shoe, “you need to meet up your friend in a lunch date. You might imagine
putting your shoe for a lunch”
*criticism: it is less clear how are you going to remember some form of complex
WHY DO VISUAL MNEMONICS IMPROVE MEMORY?
1. PAVIO: Dual Code Hypothesis
Memory contains two distinct coding systems:
(1) Verbal (abstract, linguistic meaning) -
(2) Imagery (mental pictures) – * According to Pavio, the reason why imagery improves memory so much is through the use of
aesthetic code. Not only do we use of verbal coding system, we automatically and generate a
corresponding imagery of that abstract code as well.
*i.e.: if I were to review words many times in this course, not only we’d be processing the
abstract verbal forms of the words but whenever possible, I am also generating an image of
those words. When it comes to retrieval of the items, I’ll be having two ways to retrieve it:
retrieve via verbal, retrieve via mental image.
*Having a dual code improves memory over having a single code.
2. Pavio experiment – Words in our codes depends on how easy it is to form mental image of it. Hence,
there are words that could not easily have mental images, i.e.: abstract words (uses only verbal and not
* Concrete nouns are dual coded whereas abstract nouns are only coded verbally
* Generated four different types of lists of noun pairs: CC: Concrete, Concrete; CA: Concrete, Abstract;
AC: Abstract, Concrete; AA: Both abstract
*He gave these items and let the Ps study it on their own. Rs will measure how well the ps will be able to
recall the items.
*Results: CC = 71.3%; CA = 62.5%; AC = 46.0%; AA = 37.8%; memories are best to those in concrete
items and least in abstracts. CA>AC because accdg to Pavio in associate learning, we use that first item
as the structure/ conceptual peg on which the second noun is hooked.
*What concreteness is measuring is how likely it is a person measure images.
TRANSFORMATIONS – If you were asked to rotate an image, are you actually performing the rotation in
our mind? If you are, these codes are the ones we use in our memory.
Analog mental Rotation (forming an image in your mind-what you’re doing) or generating a verbal code/
description of what does the image looks like
Shepard and Metzlar- Participants were asked to compare two objects and decide if they are
The objects were presented at different orientations
Presented novel objects and decide whether the two things were the same object; mental
rotation of 3Ds
How long will it take somebody to decide if the objects were the same?
Assumption: It should take the Ps to decide longer if the degree of rotation is larger. Find the response times that vary in the amount of rotation the objects were made. i.e.
response time varies in angle of rotation
RESULT: Linear correlations = it takes a lot longer to respond in an object that is separated by
180 deg. than objects separated by 120 deg.
IMAGE SCANNING – Do we process images just like how we process objects in our environment?
i.e.: the time you scan the map varies on the distance you are to move
If imagery, like perception, is spatial (i.e., analog) then it should take longer for participants to find
parts that are located further from the initial point of focus.
Kosslyn did the same thing for images:
From the flag, It should take you longer to respond to the door in the bottom than the clock in
Criticism: from the flag to the door, aside from movi