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Chapter 8

PSYB57H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Auditory Cortex, Parahippocampal Gyrus, Occipital Lobe

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Gabriela Ilie

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PSYB57- Chapter 8- Visual Imagery and spatial cognition
Visual images mental pictures
Visual images cant be seen, counted, or controlled by other people; behaviourists
reject the idea of visual images because they cannot be studied
People using imagery are better at recalling info
Mnemonics and memory codes
Mnemonics are strategies that people use to retain and recall info
Method of loci requires the learner to imagine a series of places or locations that
have some order to them. Ex. remembering your grocery list by imagining each item
in a different spot in your home
Another method to help remember things is called the technique of interacting
images. Recall of nouns in a study improved when they were asked to form images
of words; those in a paired associate task, who were asked to remember pairs of
words recalled them better when they formed images of the pair
Bower showed that in order for participants to improve their recall for paired words,
they should form images that interact with each other. Ex. to remember goat-pipe,
recall is better if your form an image of a goat smoking a pipe rather than simply
imagining a goat next to a pipe
Another mnemonic technique is called the pegword method. Like the method of loci,
it involves picturing the items with another set of ordered cues. In this case, the cues
are not locations but rather nouns that come from a memorized rhyming list: ex.
one= bun, two= shoe, etc.
This method calls for the participant to picture the first item interacting with a bun,
the second item interacting with a shoe, etc; this method works for only 10 items or
Not all mnemonic techniques have to do with imagery; you can record the material to
be recalled, adding extra words or sentences to mediate or go between your memory
and the material. Ex. taking the first letter of each word you have to remember and
forming a sentence or another word with it.
The words and sentences are mediators- they are internal codes that connect the
items to be remembered and our responses

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Arranging materials into categories helps organize materials and increases chances
of recall
The dual coding hypothesis
Created by Allan Paivio; LTM contains 2 distinct coding systems for representing
info to be stored. One is verbal, containing info about linguistics, items abstract. The
other involves imagery: mental pictures that represent what the item looks like
His idea is that pictures and words give rise to verbal labels and visual images; they
have 2 internal codes or mental representations
Abstract words have only 1 kind of code or representation: verbal label
In a study, participants were asked to remember one of 4 lists of noun pairs: concrete
pairs (CC; ex. table-book), abstract nouns (AA; beauty-truth), one concrete, one
abstract (CA; chair-justice) and the first noun being abstract and the second being
concrete (AC; freedom- dress)
Participants were able to remember the list in this order with the first being the
best: CC, CA, AC, and AA
Paivio explained that participants would form visual images of noun pairs whenever
possible and the formation was the easiest for concrete nouns
He assumed that visual imagery, unlike verbal labelling, increases as function of
concreteness: the more concrete the noun, the richer the image and the more
elaborated the internal code
With items are coded by both images and words, the chances of remembering those
items increases. If the verbal label is forgotten, the individual can use the mental
imagery to retrieve the info
Items that are coded only by verbal label are at a disadvantage because if the verbal
label is forgotten, the individual has less chances of remembering
Paivio also believed that the first noun in the pair, called the stimulus noun, serves
as a conceptual peg on which the second noun (response) is hooked. Thus, the
imaginability of the first noun is important in improving the remembering the
second noun.
The relational organizational hypothesis
Bower proposed this as an alternative to the previous hypothesis

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He believed that imagery improved memory not because the images are richer than
verbal labels but because imagery produces more associations between the items to
be recalled
Forming an image involves the person to create a number of links between the info to
be remembered and other info
Imagery works by facilitating the creation of a greater number of hooks that link the
2 to be remembered pieces of info
In his study, participants were divided into 3 groups, each given diff. instructions for
a paired associates learning task. One group was told to rehearse aloud; second
group told to construct 2 images that did not interact; third group told to construct
an interactive scene of the 2 words in the pair
Results showed that they recognized about 85% of the previously seen words. Those
who rehearsed aloud (overt rote repetition) recalled 30% of the pairs; noninteractive
imagery- 27% and interactive imagery- 53%
According to these results, its not imagery itself that helps memory but rather the
way in which imagery is used
Interacting images create or suggest more links between the target info and other
info, making the target info easy to retrieve
Empirical investigations of imagery
Moyer asked participants which animal was bigger (he named 2 animals). He found
that people were faster to respond when the 2 animals differed greatly; this is called
the symbolic distance effect
Mental rotation of images
Shepard and Metzlers mental rotation study: showed participants line drawings of
3-D objects. on each trial, they would see 2 drawings. In some cases, the 2 drawings
depicted the same object but with one of them rotated. In other cases, the drawings
were mirror images of each other, so the objects were similar but not identical. The
mirror images were also sometimes rotated.
They found that the amount of time it took participants to decide if the 2 drawings
depicted the same object or mirror image reversal was proportional to the angle of
rotation between the drawings
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