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Lecture 8

Psychology 1000 Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Long-Term Memory, Semantic Memory, Sensory Memory

Course Code
PSYCH 1000
John Campbell

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Cha pter 8 P s ychology: Me mory
Memory re fe rs to the proce s ses that a llow us to record a nd la te r retrieve e xperiences
a nd informa tion.
Memory as In formatio n P ro c es s in g
- Encodin g refe rs to ge tting informa tion into the s ystem by tra ns lating it into a ne ura l
code tha t your bra in proce s s e s.
- Storage involve s re taining informa tion over time . Me mory tra c e
- Retrieva l is a way to pull store s of information out when we wa nt to use it.
A Th re e Co m pone n t Mo del
- It ha s be en proposed that the me mory ha s three ma jor components: s e ns ory memory,
short te rm or working me mory, a nd long te rm me mory. These te rms do not correspond
to s pe cific pa rts in the bra in, but more a re used in a n a bs tract way.
- Sens ory m e m ory: holds incoming sensory informa tion just long enough for it to be
recognized. It is compos e d of diffe re nt s ubs ystems, ca lle d s e nsory re gis ters. Our
visua l system is ca lle d the iconic s tore . The a uditory s e ns ory re gister is ca lle d the
e choic s tore .
- Short-te rm / Wo rkin g Memory: S hort term me mory holds the information that we are
cons cious of a t a ny give n time. It is cons ide red working me mory be ca us e it
continuous ly works on a nd proce sse s informa tion.
- Mental represe nta tions ta ke various forms, s uch a s me nta l ima ge s (visual
e ncoding), s ound codes (physiological e ncoding), or focus on the me a ning of a
stimulus (sema ntic e ncoding). P a tterns of move me nt a re ca lled motor e ncoding.
- The form of a me mory code ofte n doe s not corre spond with the form of the
origina l s timulus .
- Most people can hold no more tha n five to nine me aningful items in s hort-te rm
memory. Short te rm me mory is a ide d by c h unking which combines individual
ite ms into la rge r units which makes the m e a sie r to re call.
- The s helf life of s hort term memory is a bout 20 seconds. By re he a rs ing we ca n
e xtend this though. Mainte n a nce re h ears al is whe n you simply re pe a t
informa tion ove r a nd over. Elabora tive re hears a l involves focusing on the
me aning of information or re la ting it to other things.
- Scientists view the s hort te rm memory a s a me nta l works pa ce, that a ctively a nd
simultaneously proce sses different type s of informa tion and s upports other
cognitive functions .
- Anothe r mode l divide s the working me mory into three components: the first
ma inta ins some information in a n a uditory working me mory, the s e cond is the
visua l spatial working memory a nd a llows us to store spacia l information a nd
the third is the ce ntra l e xecutive which dire cts the a ction.
- Forgettin g : Decay, material get’s old and we forget. Another the ory is inte rfe re nce,
which is whe n new ma te ria l pus he s out old ma te rial.
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- Long Te rm Me m o ry: is the va s t libra ry of more durable s tore d me mories. As fa r a s
we know, long te rm s tora ge ca pacity is potentially unlimite d. S hort te rm a nd long te rm
studie s verify tha t short term and long term me morie s a re dis tinct.
- The s e ria l p o s itio n e ffec t means that recall is influenced by a word’s position
in a s e rie s of ite ms. The two components of this e ffe ct a re: the primary e ffect,
refle cting the s upe rior re call of e a rly words, and the re cency e ffect, representing
the supe rior re call of the mos t re ce nt words .
En codin g : En tering In formatio n
Effortful and Au toma tic P ro c es s in g
- Effortful processing involves encoding tha t is initia te d inte ntiona lly a nd require s
cons cious a ttention. An e xa mple is re hearsing.
- Automa tic proce ssing is e ncoding tha t occurs without inte ntion a nd re quire s minima l
a ttention. An e xample is informa tion a bout the frequency, spa tia l loca tion, se que nce ,
a nd time of e ve nts .
Le ve ls of P roces s ing: Wh en De e per is Be tte r
- Different le vels of proce s s ing a nd e ncoding a re : s tructura l e ncoding, phonologica l
e ncoding, a nd s e ma ntic encoding.
- Leve ls o f p ro c e s s ing is a concept tha t sta te s the more deeply we proce ss
informa tion, the be tte r it will be re membered. At time s the de pth of process ing ca n be
difficult to measure .
Exp os ure a n d Re hea rs al
- To le a rn fa ctua l and conce ptua l informa tion pre sented in mos t a ca demic or job
settings , we ne ed to e mploy e ffortful, de e p proce s sing. Simple re peated exposure to a
stimulus without s topping to think about it re pre sents shallow proce ssing.
- Ma inte na nce re hearsal ke e ps ite ms in S TM
- Active re he a rs a l organize s information.
Organizatio n a n d Im a gery
- Hierarchies a nd Ch u nkin g: orga nizing information in a hie ra rchy ta ke s advanta ge of
the principle tha t me mory is enhances by a s socia tions be tween concepts. A logica l
hie rarchy e nhances our unde rs tanding of how the se dive rs e e le me nts a re re la te d. A
common e xa mple of chunking is remembering phone numbers.
- Mn e m onic De vices : a ny type of me mory a id. An e xa mple is hie ra rchies, chunking, or
a cronyms. The y do not re duce the a mount of informa tion, jus t orga nize it in a wa y
which is e a s ie r to proce s s.
- Vis u a l Im a ge ry: P aivio proposes that informa tion is s tore d in long term me mory in two
diffe re nt forms: ve rba l a nd nonve rba l. According to this d ua l codin g the ory, e ncoding
informa tion us ing both code s e nha nce s me mory.
How Prio r Kn owle dge S h a p es Encod in g
- Schem a s : Ou r Men ta l Org a nizers : A s c h ema is a me nta l fra me work- a n orga nize d
pa ttern of thought a bout some a s pe ct of the world, s uch as a cla s s of pe ople , events,
situa tions , or obje cts .
- Schem a s a n d Exp e rt Kn owle d ge: In mus ic a s in othe r fie lds, a cquiring expe rt
knowle dge ca n be vie we d a s a process of de ve loping s che ma s that he lp e ncode
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