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Chapter 7

PSYC 2650 Chapter Notes - Chapter 7: Interference Theory, Sleep Deprivation, Amygdala


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 2650
Professor
Dan Meegan
Chapter
7

Page:
of 4
CHAPTER 7: REMEMBERING COMPLEX EVENTS
MEMORY ERRORS
Connections for memories are not distinct or independent
Instead there are stronger or more dense connections leading one way rather than the other
Problem is that you may lose track of the boundaries each memory may have and lose track of
which bits of information are apart of others
oTransplant errors being that a bit of information encountered in one context is
transplanted into another context
UNDERSTANDING AND MEMORY
Helps memory by creating retrieval paths that allow you to locate the information in memory
Can also hurt memory by making it difficult to see where the remembered episode stops and
other related information begins
oConnections encourage intrusion errors in which other knowledge intrudes into the
remembered event
DRM PROCEDURE
Participants presented related words
oSay to sleep
The word “sleep” however is not presented
Participants have to recall the words, and the intrusion error of including the word sleep often
occurs
This is due to the understanding of the words being related to this
THE COST OF MEMORY ERRORS
On the positive side memory connections serve as retrieval paths allowing you to locate the
information in storage
Memory connections can however undermine memory accuracy
PLANTING FALSE MEMORIES
Using biased words can influence the decisions of an individual
False memories easier to be implanted if persons are not only hearing them but also imagining
them
ARE THERE LIMITS ON THE MISINFORMATION EFFECT?
Participants memories being influenced by misinformation they are receiving after the
remembered event took place
Information that is being planted should be plausible
AVOIDING MEMORY ERRORS
Memory used in our day-to-day lives is usually long-lasting, detailed, and most of all correct
MEMORY CONFIDENCE
Jury’s in courts often assume that confident recall is accurate recall
oJudges believe the same
However, there is little relationship between memory confidence and memory accuracy
THE REMEMBER/KNOW DISTINCTION
The emotion attached to memories
Are people less emotional when remembering a memory of fiction
oCan we use degree of emotion to detect accurate memories vs. false ones?
oEmotion however does not change with accurate to fiction memories
False memories can be just as distressful as fictional ones
The feeling of “remembering” is more likely to be paired with accurate memories than the
feeling of “knowing”
False memories often arrive with just a general sense of familiarity
But the feeling of “remembering” and “knowing” has exceptions and therefore is not a reliable
means of distinguishing between false and accurate memories
Often more accurate memories can be recalled faster then false ones
For the most part, memory errors cannot be detected when they occur
FORGETTING
Retention interval refers to the amount of time that elapses between initial learning and
subsequent retrieval
oWhen this interval grows you are likely to forget the earlier event
oA common mistake is when people believe that forgetting a name of a person you just
met is forgetting
However, this is just failure of acquisition – failing to pay attention so you never
learned the name in the first place
Decay is another possible explanation – As with time memories fade or erode
oPossibly because the relevant brain cells die off
oOr because connections between memories need to be refreshed – connections gradually
weaken
Interference theory can also explain forgetting – according to this view the passage of time is
correlated with forgetting but does not cause it – it is new learning that disrupts new memories
Retrieval failure suggests that the retrieval of information relies on the context and whether it
matches the time you learned such information
oCommon event with people is not being able to remember a word or event
oThe “tip of the tongue” situation
Turns out all hypothesis’s here are correct
UNDOING FORGETTING
Neither hypnosis or drugs can undo forgetting and improve your memories
The cognitive interview is used and intended in police work
oIt is aimed towards maximizing the quantity and accuracy of eye witness testimonies of
information eyewitnesses from crimes
oA diverse set of retrieval cues are used
MEMORY, AN OVERALL ASSESSMENT
Memory’s function is to provide you with the information you need in order to live your life
oSo forgetting is often advantageous
AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY
Remembered event, emotion, and long delay are all central to autobiographical memory
oThis memory contains the full recollection of our lives
MEMORY AND THE SELF
Having involvement in an event rather than just witnessing it turns out to have a large effect on
memory
The self reference effect is the memory advantage for materials pertaining to self
oThis emerges in many forms
Such as remembering things you have said opposed to things others have said
Self-schema regards your reflection of what your usual normal behavior is
oSo say you are remembering New Years, one might remember being excited due to that
is what you believe your usual pattern was
MEMORY AND EMOTION
Many memories of your life evoke emotions
Emotional arousal seems to promote the process of memory consolidation
Emotions trigger responses in the amygdala
oHigher activity in this increases activity in the hippocampus
This area of the brain is crucial for memories
Emotion may even change what a person pays attention to in an event, and in return what
aspects are remembered
FLASHBULB MEMORIES
Memories of extraordinary clarity, typically for highly emotional events, retained despite the
passage of many years
These memories can contain large-scale errors
However, these memories can be accurate as well
One reason why they may be accurate at times but not at others may be contributed to the
consequentiality of the
oIf the event matters directly to the participants life it is more likely to be remembered
accurately
oConsequentiality predicted accurate recollection
The reason why consequentiality produced accurate recollections may be simply because of
rehearsal
oIf an event is consequential then you think about it and discuss it with friends