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Chapter 7

Chapter 7 - Human Memory.docx

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Dax Urbszat

Chapter 7 - Human Memory Three key processes involved in memory:  Encoding involves forming a memory code (like entering data using a computer keyboard)  Storage involves maintaining encoded information in memory over time (like saving data in a file on your computer)  Retrieval involves recovering information from memory stores (like opening up a file saved in your computer) Encoding: Getting Information into Memory The Role of Attention Attention involves focusing awareness on a narrowed range of stimuli or events  “cocktail party phenomenon” suggests that stimuli are screened out late after the brain has processed the meaning or significance of the input (ex. Claudia may notice someone mentioning her name in another conversation even though she has been ignoring it)  According to Lavie, the location of the attention filter depends on the “cognitive load” of current information processing (high-load tasks, selection tends to occur early and vice versa)  When participants are forced to divide their attention between memory encoding and some other task, large reductions in memory performance are seen Multitasking deteriorates performance (ex. cellular conversations increased the chances of missing traffic  signals and slowed down reactions to signals that were detected)  Some types of information may be acquired automatically Levels of Processing  Different techniques used in learning: - Verbal elaboration - attempting to construct sentences describing the objects - associated with activity in a network regions including the prefrontal cortex - Visual image strategy - focusing on the images of the objects  showed brain activity in the extrastriate region(next to the primary visual cortex)  Different rates of forgetting occur because some methods of encoding create more durable memory codes than others  Three progressively deeper levels of processing: - Structural encoding - relatively shallow processing that emphasizes the physical structure of the stimulus (shallow processing - ex: is the word written in capital letters?) - Phonemic encoding - emphasizes what the word sounds like (intermediate processing - ex: does the word rhyme with weight?) - Semantic encoding - emphasizes the meaning of verbal input; involves thinking about the objects and actions the words represent (deep processing - ex: would the word fit in the sentence: "he met a ______ on the street?") Levels-of-processing theory proposes that deeper levels of processing result in longer-lasting memory codes Enriching Encoding Elaboration is linking a stimulus to other information at the time of encoding  Often consists of thinking of examples that illustrate an idea Visual Imagery—the creation of visual images to represent the words to be remembered—can also be used to enrich encoding  Paivio points out that it is easier to form images of concrete objects than of abstract concepts  Higher imagery words are recalled better than lower-imagery words  Dual-coding theory (Paivio) holds that memory is enhanced by forming semantic and visual codes, since either can lead to recall Self-referent encoding involves deciding how or whether information is personally relevant Making material personally meaningful can enrich encoding  Storage: Maintaining Information in Memory Sensory Memory Sensory memory preserves information in its original sensory form for a brief time, usually only a fraction of a second  In case of vision, people perceive an afterimage rather than the actual stimulus  Experiment by George Sperling - subjects saw three rows of letters flashed on a screen for just 1/20 of a second. Tone indicates which row to report - accuracy steadily declined when the delay of the tone increased to 1 second because memory trace in the visual sensory store decays in about 1/4 of a second. Short-term memory Short-term memory (STM) is a limited-capacity store that can maintain unrehearsed information or about 10–20 seconds Rehearsal – the process of repetitively verbalizing or thinking about the information  Maintenance rehearsal - maintaining the information in the consciousness  More elaborative processing - increasing the probability that you will retain the information in the future Durability of Storage  Without rehearsal, information in short-term memory is lost in less than 20 seconds  Originally, theorists believed that loss of information from STM was due purely to time-related delay of memory traces, but follow-up research showed that interference from competing material also contributes Capacity of Storage  Short-term memory is limited in the number of items it can hold  People could only recall seven items in tasks that required them to remember unfamiliar material  A chunk is a group of familiar stimuli stores as a single unit - this technique increases the capacity of STM Ex. ( NFB - CTV - CBC - IBM)  Expert chess players remember the positions of the chess pieces when they were arranged in a meaningful way Short-Term Memory as "Working Memory" Short-term memory is not limited to phonemic encoding   Decay is not the only process responsible for loss of information from STM  Short-term memory involves more than a simple rehearsal buffer  Four components of Baddeley's model of working memory: - phonological loop - is at work when you use recitation to temporarily remember a phone number  Evolved to facilitate the acquisition of language - visuospatial sketchpad - permits people to temporarily hold and manipulate visual images (ex. When you try to mentally rearrange the furniture in your bedroom) - central executive system - controls the deployment of attention, switching the focus of attention as needed  Coordinates the actions of the other modules - episodic buffer - a temporary, limited-capacity store that allows the various components of working memory to integrate information and that serves as an interface between working memory and long-term memory  STM handles a greater variety of functions than previously thought  Working memory capacity - correlates positively with measures of high-level cognitive abilites  Which means it plays a fundamental role in complex cognitive processes Long-Term Memory Long-term memory (LTM) is an unlimited capacity store that can hold information over lengthy periods of time/ permanently  Penfield reported triggering of long-lost memories through electrical stimulation of the brain (ESB) during brain surgeries (stimulation of the temporal lobe of epileptic patient sometimes elicited vivid descriptions of events long past)  flashbulb memories - unusually vivid and detailed recollections of momentous events (ex. People will long remember exactly where they were and how they felt when they learned about the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center) Why not these demonstrate LTM storage is permanent?  ESB-induced recollections apparently were hallucinations, dreams, or loose reconstructions of events  Flashbulb memories are neither as accurate not as special as once believed Conclusion: there's no convincing evidence that memories are stored permanently and that forgetting is all a matter of retrieval failure Are Short-Term Memory and Long-Term Memory Really Separate? STM was thought to depend on phonemic encoding (based on sound), whereas LTM encoding was thought  to be largely semantic (based on meaning)  Information loss from STM: mostly due to time-related decay  Principal mechanism of LTM forgetting: interference  Perspectives: - short-term memory is viewed as a tiny and constantly changing portion of long-term memory that happens to be in a heightened state of activation - there is a single, unitary, “generic” memory store that is governed by one set of rules and processes  At present, the multiple stores viewpoint remains dominant, but alternative approaches are becoming increasingly influential How Is Knowledge Represented and Organized in Memory? Clustering and Conceptual Hierarchies Clustering—the tendency to remember similar or related items in groups   Conceptual hierarchy is a multilevel classification system based on common properties among items Schemas  Schema is an organized cluster of knowledge about a particular object or event abstracted from previous experience with the object or event  Ex. You are likely to recall objects that are in a typical office  The opposite is also true: People sometimes exhibit better recall of things that violate their schema-based expectations  Relational Schemas - representations of typical events surrounding interpersonal interactions Semantic Networks  Semantic network consists of nodes representing concepts, joined together by pathways that link related concepts - semantic networks have proven useful in explaining why thinking about one word (such as butter) can make a closely related word (such as bread) easier to remember  Spreading activation - when people think about a word, their thoughts naturally go to related words Connectionist Networks and Parallel Distributed Processing (PDP) Models  Parallel distributed processing - simultaneous processing of the same information that is spread across networks of neurons  Connectionist or parallel distributed processing (PDP) models assume that cognitive processes depend on patterns of activation in highly interconnected computational networks(nodes) that resemble neural networks PDP models assert that specific memories correspond to particular patterns of  activation in these networks In semantic networks, specific nodes represent specific concepts or pieces of knowledge. In connectionist networks, a piece of knowledge is represented by a particular pattern of activation across an entire network. Thus, the information lies in the strengths of the connections, which is why the PDP approach is called “connectionism.” Using Cues to Aid Retrieval Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon—the temporary inability to remember something you know, accompanied by a feeling that it’s just out of reach Retrieval cues—stimuli that he
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