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Lecture 7

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Michael Inzlicht

Lecture 7 Ch. 6 Pg. 208, 209, 218, 230, 231-2 LEARNING AS PREPARATION FOR RETRIEVAL - Connections serve as retrieval paths: to locate info in the memory, you travel on those paths, moving from one memory to the next until you reach the target material - Retrieval paths have a starting point and an ending point Context-Dependent Learning - * scuba diving experiment - What matters is not the physical context but the psychological context – i.e. recall was best done in the room in which the initial learning took place Changes in Memory Materials - Context reinstatement – improved memory performance if we re-create the context that was in place during learning - The context has its effect only b/c it influences how you think about the materials to be remembered - Retrieval cue – help them recall each word - People who thought about meaning at the time of learning remembered about 50% more than people who thought about sound - If they thought about sound at the time of learning, they did better with a cue concerning the word’s sound ENCODING SPECIFICITY - What’s preserved in memory is some record of the target material – info being focussed on o Some record of the connections you established during learning - The brain contains the target info and the highways built, leading toward that info o These highways – memory connections – can influence search for the target info o They can also change the meaning of what is remembered b/c “memory plus this set of connections” has different meaning from “memory plus that set of connections” - Encoding specificity – what you encode is specific – not just the physical stimulus as it was encountered, but the stimulus together with this context - If presented later with the stimulus in a different context you have to ask does this match anything and then answer no THE MEMORY NETWORK - Learning involves the criterion of memory connections - Memory is best thought of as a vast network of ideas - Nodes within the network are tied to each other via connections – associations or associative links o i.e. nodes are like light bulbs that can be turned on by incoming electricity and the associative links are like wires that carry the electricity Spreading Activation - nodes become activated when they received a strong enough input signal - once the node has been activated, it can activate other notes: energy will spread out from the just-activated node via its associations and this will activate the nodes connected to the just-activated node - nodes receive activation from their neighbours, and as more and more activation arrives at a particular node, the activation level for that node increase - when the activation level increases the node fires – firing causes the node to be a source of activation,, sending energy to its neighbours and activating them o firing will call attention to that node = “to find a node within the network” - activation levels below response threshold = sub-threshold activation o activation is assumed to accumulate, so that 2 sub-threshold inputs may add together (summate) and bring the node to threshold - spreading activation – a process through which activation travels from one node to another via associative links o as each node becomes activated, it serves as a source for further activation, spreading onward through the network o activation spread from its starting point in all directions simultaneously, flowing through w/e connection are in place Semantic Priming - summation of sub-threshold activation - the insufficient activation received from one source can add to this insufficient activation received from another source - either source of activation on its own would not be enough, but the two can combine to activate the target nodes 1 Lecture 7 Ch. 6 Pg. 208, 209, 218, 230, 231-2 - lexical-decision task – participants are shown a series of letters sequences on a computer screen o some of the sequences spell words; other sequences aren’t words o the participant’s task is to hit “yes” if the sequence spells a word and “no” otherwise o they perform this task by looking up these letter strings in their mental dictionary or not o use the participant’s sped response as an index of how quickly they can locate the world in their memories - trials with related words will produce semantic priming – priming is used to indicate what a specific prior event will produce a state of readiness later on - various forms of priming – one results from the fact that the two words in the pair are related in meaning DIFFERENT FORMS OF MEMORY TESTING - like all paths, the paths through memory have both a starting point and an end point - retrieval paths will be helpful only if you are at the starting point – basis for the advantage of context reinstatement - often want to recall info we encountered – we’re presented a retrieval cue that broadly identifies the info that we seek, but then we need to come up with the info on our own - you draw info from your memory via recognition – cases in which information is present to you and you must decide whether it’s the sough-after info or not - recall requires memory search b/c you have to come up with the sought-after item on your own o recall depends heavily on memory connections - recognition is like a hybrid o sometimes you may not be able to recognize a word but it may still feel familiar to you – in this case you do not have source memory, do not have any recollection of the source of your current knowledge o but have a strong sense of familiarity – attribute the familiarity to the earlier encounter, and thanks to attribution you base your answer on this Familiarity and Source Memory - the two types of memory are independent of each other, so it’s possible for en event to be familiar w/o any source memory - possible to have source memory w/o familiarity – reflected in the common experience in which you’re watching a movie, realize that one of the actors is familiar but unable to recall from where - source memory and familiarity are distinguishable biologically - “remember/know” distinction – pressing one button to indicate a recall of a particular items, and pressing another if there is no recall but have a broad feeling that you’ve seen it before - Familiarity and source memory can be distinguishable during learning o
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