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PSYC 260 (11)
Julia Kam (11)

Part III - Lectures 15, 16 & 17.doc

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PSYC 260
Julia Kam

Learning and Memory Different Dimensions of Memory • Dimension of retention length o Short-term memory: memory for what information is currently being held in mind, typically ranging from 15-30 s o Long-term memory: memory for events, facts, procedures that are retained for more than 30 s • Dimension of direction in time o Retrospective memory: memory for events that have already happened o Prospective memory: memory associated with looking forward in time, in terms of remembering to do something in the future • Dimension of the type of information to be remembered o Episodic memory: memory for autobiographical experiences o Semantic memory: memory associated with facts and knowledge • Dimension of declarative vs. procedural memory o Declarative memory: memory that involves verbalizable information that has been remembered o Procedural memory: memory associated with how to perform certain actions (that may be hard to verbalize) • Dimension of awareness of memory’s influence on behaviour o Explicit memory: memory that we are consciously aware of o Implicit memory: memories that influence our behaviour without our awareness that we are recollecting memory Effects of Encoding • Spacing effect o Single vs. distributed testing  Encoding phase: some facts on each lesson were quizzes 3 times throughout each chapter, while other facts were not quizzed  Testing phase: memory recall was assessed on tests at (1) ends of chapters. (2) end of the semester, and (3) end of the year  Distributed testing improved memory retrieval o Massed vs. distributed study sessions  Spaced out studying improved memory retrieval o Massed vs. distributed encoding  Therefore, maximizing the number of distinct, separate memory of items results in better recall of those items  The longer the intervals between each encoding/studying phase, the better the memory performance at recall • Level of processing o Depths of processing  The deeper the level of processing, the more likely an item will be remembered o Encoding specificity  A match between the cues used at encoding and testing enhances memory performance o Transfer-appropriate processing  An overlap between the types of processing required in study phase and memory test improves memory performance • Self-related effect o Comparison of encoding context  In terms of memory recall performance: sound < semantic < self-related  The “self” is a knowledge structure that is rich in associations • There is something about yourself and the things you own that are specially treated cognitively Impact of schemas • Selection: schemes bias what is encoded o Impact of expertise  Experts remember more information in their domain of expertise • Track runners remember numbers better because they associate them with track times • Chess players are more likely to remember the placement of pieces on a chessboard in a meaningful games, but equally likely (compared to novices) to remember the placement of pieces in an impossible game  Experts have more organized knowledge structures and are better at chunking information o Impact of organizing information  We recall more if we have schemas in mind (i.e. mental images/models/topics) prior to encoding  Schemas enhance memory performance only if they are present during the encoding of information. If they come after, they don’t help with organizing information. o Impact of perspectives  Participants were first asked to read a story from either the perspective of a thief or a homebuyer. Then, they were asked to describe every detail of the story they read earlier.  The perspective you take influences what information seems more important and is therefore more likely to be remembered • Abstraction: schemas bias what is stored o For normal, everyday situations, we tend to remember the gist and leave out details • Interpretation: schemas bias how information is encoded o We encode/remember our own interpretation of the situation  E.g. Regarding an argument with a friend, we tend to remember our own interpretation of the meaning of what the friend said as opposed to exactly what the friend said • Integration: schemas bias how information is stored o We integrate true/false details from different sources into our own memory State-dependent Memory • Extension of encoding specificity o Usage of alcohol or marijuana (better for free recall but not for cued recall) during study sometimes help with encoding o Generally, it depends on the type of retrieval test. Free recall may yield greater advantage for state-dependent memory (e.g. intoxicated or not). Mood-dependent memory • Extension of encoding specificity o Methods: (1) participants were induced in positive or negative mood; (2) participants generated an autobiographical memory; (3) participants were induced in same, different, or neutral mood; and (4) participants were asked to recall previously generated events o Results: Mood-congruent memory (participants had better recall if in the same mood as generation of memories, and participants performed worst if in different mood) o Implications: During episodes of depression, negative memories are more likely to be retrieved Physical context-dependent memory • Extension of encoding specificity o Does being in the same physical context during encoding and testing enhance memory?  An empty license plate increases accuracy of recall by 1.5 letters/numbers per plate  If words were encoded either on land or underwater, participants had better memory if study and test phases were carried out in the same physical context o The advantage of encoding specificity is not always reliable. It may depend on subtle different in contexts of types of cues. Applications • Interviewing techniques of eyewitness testimony o Cognitive principles  Encoding specificity  Changing the perspective (e.g. seeing the crime at the scene or from across the street) o Structured interviews  Build rapport  Compatible questioning o In a lab study, those who were trained with cognitive principles led to 50% increase in accuracy of reports in eyewitnesses compared to the simple usage of structured interviews. Basic Principles of Retrieval • Familiarity o Perceptually driven (e.g. feeling of knowing) • Recollection o Conceptually driven (e.g. specific knowledge of context) • Type of retrieval o Recognition can be driven by either familiarity or recollection o Recall typically requires exclusively recollection • Temporal characteristic and organization o Familiarity decays faster  Over time, we rely more on recollection o Recollection is facilitated by organization (e.g. organized items led to better recall than recognition) • Effect of rehearsal o Familiarity benefits from repetition o Recollection benefits from elaboration • Representational mode o Familiarity relies on perceptual modality  Therefore, it benefits from rehearsal if speaker’s voice is the same o Recollection is conceptual  Therefore, it benefits from semantic organization • Amnesia o Familiarity is unaffected by amnesia o Recollection is impaired by amnesia Types of Memory Illusions • Integration of events o Source monitoring errors  Two types of sources • Internal/internal (though vs. said) • External/external (source A vs. source B)  Differentiation between sources depends on similarity  Two types of processes • Systematic (deliberative and more effortful) • Heuristic (automatic and focuses more on peripheral information)  Deliberate manipulations to the source to be monitored affects performance • E.g. knowledge of upcoming test  increase systematic processing  decrease source-monitoring errors • E.g. high cognitive load  decrease systematic processing  increase source-monitoring errors o Misinformation effects  Laboratory witnessed events • Group 1: “How fast were the two cars going when they HIT?” • Group 2: “How fast were the two cars going when they SMASHED?” • The speed reported by Group 2 was significantly higher than that reported by Group 1 • Group 2 participants were more likely to report seeing broken glass at the simulated crime scene, while, in reality, there was no broken glass  When is misleading information more misleading (more likely to be incorporated into memory)? • When discrepancy is not detected in the comparison between our own memory and the misleading information • When misleading information is peripheral (not the main focus of the question) • When misleading information is presented quickly, thus giving us less time to analyze the information  How can misinformation effects be reduced? • Reinstatement of context (e.g. present events in the same serial order as the one used during encoding, as opposed to merely using random order) • Warn participants before testing (not before encoding)  Standard paradigm for testing the misinformation effect • Participants saw pictures of a man holding a wrench • Question: Did the man carry a wrench or hammer? o Participants were presented with a quickly flashed photo of the thief stealing a wrench  The photo was flashed
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