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Psychological Science - Third Canadian Edition - Chapter Seven Notes.docx

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INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY (CHAPTER 7) MEMORY = the nervous  Each of us has the ability to direct something in ourselves, called attention system’s capacity to acquire  Attention is limited and retain usable skills and  Attention is important to the ability to function in daily life knowledge VISUAL ATTENTION IS SELECTIVE AND SERIAL:  According to Anne Treisman, we automatically identify primitive features such as colour, shape, orientation and movement within an environment and has proposed that separate systems analyze objects’ different visual features  We can attend selectively to one feature by effectively blocking the further processing of the others through PARALLEL PROCESSING - in studies of visual search tasks, participants looked at a display of different objects on a computer screen, searching for targets that differ from the others in only one feature and other objects in the display are called distractors - searching for one feature is fast and automatic; features include colour, motion, orientation and size - targets “pops up” at you  searching for two features is called SERIAL PROCESSING Patient H.M = had seizures, to stop - you need to look at the stimuli (features) one at a time them, he part of his temporal lobe - becomes effortful and slower removed, memory was severely - called a conjunction task damaged, remembered nothing after the surgery, IQ was slightly above average, AUDITORY ATTENTION ALLOWS SELECTIVE LISTENING: learned new motor tasks  it is hard to listen to two sounds at once  E.C. Cherry described the COCKTAIL PARTY PHENOMENON: you can focus on a single conversation in the midst of chaotic noise and a pertinent stimulus (such as your name being called) can capture your attention  Cherry developed selective-listening studies to examine what people’s minds do with unattended information - Used SHADOWING in which a participant wears headphones that deliver one message to one ear and a different message to the other - Person is asked to attend to one of the two messages and repeat it aloud (shadowing) - Subject will have no knowledge about the contents of the unattended messaged SELECTIVE ATTENTION CAN OPERATE AT MULTIPLE STAGES OF PROCESSING:  Donald Broadbent developed the FILTER THEORY in 1958 to explain the selective nature of attention  In his model, attention is a gate that opens for important information and closes for irrelevant information  Some stimuli demand attention and shut off the ability to attend anything else  Some stimuli may readily capture attention because they provide important information about potential threats in an environment; example: faces because they provide important social information  Some selective-listening studies have found that even when participants cannot repeat an unattended message, they still have processed its contents  CHANGE BLINDNESS (common failure to notice large changes in environments) demonstrates how inattentive we can be because we cannot attend to everything in the vast array of visual information available - Shows that we can attend to a limited amount of information and that large discrepancies exist between most people they see and what they actually see - Shows how attention influences memory THE BASIC STAGES OF MEMORY: [There are two different models of how memory works] A. INFORMATION PROCESSING MODEL  Since the 1960s, memory was viewed as a form of information processing, similar to how computers process information: information is received via modem, is processed via software, stored onto the hard drive, and retrieved when needed  Three phases: 1. Encoding - Occurs at the time of learning - Information is encoded and changed into a neural code so the brain can use it 2. Storage - Retention of encoded memory - Can last a fraction of a second or as long as a lifetime - Three different storage systems 3. Retrieval - to recall or remember stored information B. MODAL MEMORY MODEL  Was proposed by R. Atkinson and R. Shiffrin in 1968  Has dominated psychological thinking about memory  Three stages: 1. Sensory memory - Temporary memory system - Closely tied to sensory systems - A memory of the senses is created by patterns of neural activity in the brain and leaves a trace on the nervous system for a fraction of a second - In 1960, G. Sperling concluded that the visual memory persisted for about one-third of a second, after which the sensory memory faded progressively until it was no longer accessible; his experiments included flashing three rows of letters on a screen and asking participants to recall all letters - Allows us to experience the world as a continuous stream 2. Working Memory - Also known as short-term memory, a limited-capacity memory, active processing - Keeps different types of information available for current use and holds it in awareness for a brief period - Consists of fleeting thoughts, shifted feelings, and temporary impressions of things in the world (immediate memory) - Memory is constantly replaced by new information and lost if not saved - Information remains for about 20 – 30 seconds, but can be kept by: a. thinking about it or rehearsing the information (i.e.: looking up a telephone number) b. 7 items (plus or minus 2) principle – standard amount to remember (memory span); noted by G. Miller; new research shows that it might be 4 items c. CHUNKING = organizing information into meaningful units to make it easier to remember (i.e.: 905-286-0825); the more you chunk information, the easier it is remembered - Has four components (developed by A. Baddeley): a. Phonological loop i. Encodes auditory information ii. Active when a person tries to remembers words by reading them, speaking them, or repeating them iii. Words are processed by how they sound rather than by how they look or mean b. Visuospatial sketchpad i. Processes visual information such as objects’ features and where they are located c. Episodic buffer i. Holds temporary information about oneself ii. Draws heavily on long-term episodic memory d. Central executive i. control system ii. encodes information from the sensory systems iii. filters information, stores it into long-term memory as needed iv. coordinates information between each component v. uses chunking 3. Long-Term Memory - Refers to relatively permanent storage of information - Is nearly limitless, allowing us to remember things from childhood, meanings and spellings rarely used, etc... DISTINGUSIHING LONG-TERM MEMORY FROM WORKING MEMORY:  LTM and WM are distinct from one another in terms of duration and capacity  According to research, the ability to recall items from a list depended on the order of presentation; items presented early or late were remembered better than those in the middle  Better recall of early and late items in a list relative to items in the middle is known as the SERIAL POSITION EFFECT; includes PRIMACY EFFECT (better memory for items presented at the beginning of a list) and RECENCY EFFECT (better memory for the most recent items at the end of a list)  The explanation for SPE relies on a distinction between WM and LTM - the earliest items are rehearsed the most, so that information is transferred into LTM - the last items are still in the WM when people have to recall the words immediately after reading them  delays interfere with the recency effect but not the primacy effect  the best support for the distinction between WM and LTM exists at the biological level of analysis - Examples: i. Patient H.M – his WM is perfectly normal and much of his LTM is intact, but he is unable to transfer new information from WM into LTM ii. 28 year-old accident victim with damage to the left temporal lobe had extremely poor WM, with a span of only one or two items, but he had a perfectly normal LTM - These case studies demonstrate that LTM can be dissociated from WM  Both are highly interdependent (i.e.: to chunk information in WM, people need to form meaningful connections based on information storied in LTM) WHAT GETS INTO LONG-TERM MEMORY:  A filtering system or series of rules must constrain what goes into our LTM  Possible Explanations: 1. Information enters permanent storage through rehearsal - When you study for exams, you often go over the material many times to be sure you learned it - Overlearning leads to improved memory - Material studied in multiple sessions over time (distributed practice) is remembered better than material studied in a brief period (massed practice) - The most efficient way to learn is to study for shorter periods, but to spread those study sessions out over several days or weeks 2. Information that helps us adapt to our environment is typically transformed into LTM - We want to store only useful information so as to benefit from experience (i.e.: remembering that a penny is money and being able to recognize one is more useful than being able to recall its specific features) 3. Evolutionary theory helps explain how we decide in advance what information will be useful - Allows us to use information in ways that assist in reproduction and survival - Animals that use past experiences to increase their chances of survival have a selective advantage over animals that fail to learn from past experiences - Recognizing a predator and remembering an escape route will help an animal avoid being eaten THE DIFFERENT LONG-TERM MEMORY SYSTEMS:  The traditional view was that memories differed in terms of their strength and accessibility, but were all considered to be the same type  E. Tulving, D. Schacter, P. Graf and L. Squire challenged this view; they argued that memory is not just one entity but a process that involves several interacting systems; they encode and store different types of information in different ways  Types: 1. IMPLICIT MEMORY - The system underlying unconscious memories - Defined by P. Graf and D. Schacter in 1985 - Can affect beliefs about people (social level of analysis) - Can lead to FALSE FAME EFFECT (L. Jacoby held an experiment in which participants read aloud a list of made-up names and the next day, and misjudged some of the names for famous people) - Divided into three types: a. Classical Conditioning = happens automatically; influences our lives in subtle ways; advertisers rely on this to influence purchasing decisions b. Repetition Priming = improvement in identifying or processing a stimulus that has been experienced previously c. Procedural Memory or Motor Memory = involves motor skills, habits, and other behaviours employed to achieve goals; have an automatic unconscious aspect 2. EXPLICIT MEMORY - The processes involved when people remember specific information - The cognitive information retrieved is DECLARATIVE MEMORY (knowledge that can be declared and consciously brought to mind); can involve words or concepts, visual images, or both - Divided into two types: a. Episodic = memory for one’s personal past experience; includes information about the time and place the experiences occurred (i.e.: you remember what you did on your last birthday) b. Semantic = memory for knowledge about the world; represents the knowledge of facts independent of personal experience (i.e.: we remember the capital of France) 3. PROSPECTIVE MEMORY - Remembering to do something at some time in the future; future oriented; individual remembers to do something at some future time - Attending to certain information makes us unable to attend closely to other information - Remembering to do something takes up valuable cognitive resources, either by reducing the number of items we can deal with in working memory or by reducing the number of things we can attend to - Involves both automatic and controlled processes - Retrieval cues occur in particular environments sometimes and other times not - Those without retrieval cues is the reason sticky notes are so popular; to jog one’s memory ORGANIZATION PRINCIPLES OF LONG-TERM MEMORY:  Information is stored in networks of neurons in the brain and then is stored as mental representations  Retrieval involves effort to access the contents of memory storage OR requires no effort  Memories are stored by meaning  LEVELS OF PROCESSING MODEL - the more deeply an item is encoded, the more meaning it has and the better it is remembered - different types of rehearsal lead to differential encoding:  MAINTENANCE REHEARSAL (repeating the item over and over)  ELABORATIVE REHEARSAL (encodes the information in more meaningful ways such as thinking about the item conceptually or deciding whether it refers to oneself – link information to knowledge from LTM) - Brain imaging studies have shown that semantic encoding activates more brain regions than shallow encoding; greater brain activity is associated with better memory  SCHEMAS - A cognitive structure that helps perceive, organize, process and use information - Help sort out incoming information and guide attention to an environment’s relevant features - Helps construct new memories by filling in holes within existing memories, overlooking inconsistent information and interpreting meaning based on past experiences - Can lead to biased encoding because culture heavily influences schemas  NETWORK ASSOCIATIONS - Aristotle argued that the idea of our knowledge of the world is organized so that things related in meaning are linked in storage - A. Collins and E. Loftus’s model shows that an item’s distinctive features are linked so as to identify the item and each unit of information in the network is a NODE; each one is connected to other nodes - Activating one node increases the likelihood that closely associated nodes will be activated; the closer the nodes, the stronger the association between them and activating one will activate the other (spreading activation) - This activation increases the ease of access to the material and facilitates retrieval - Overall organization is based on hierarchically structured categories to find needed information quickly  RETRIEVAL CUES - Anything that helps a person recall information from memory; sorts through the vast data in LTM to access the right information - Explains why it is easier to recognize than recall information (i.e.: students prefer multiple-choice exams over essay exams) - According to E. Tulving’s ENCODING SPECIFICITY PRINCIPLE, any stimulus encoded along with an experience can later trigger a memory of the experience - Memory enhancement when the recall situation is similar to the encoding situation is known as CONTEXT DEPENDENT MEMORY; can be based on things such as physical location, odours and background music which produce a sense of familiarity  Example: Scuba divers learning a list of words either underwater or on land and then recalling the words either underwater or on land; recalled more words if they learned words underwater and recalled them underwater and vice versa - Internal cues (i.e.: mood state) can facilitate the recovery of information from LTM - Enhancement of memory when internal states match during encoding and recall is known as STATE DEPENDENT MEMORY  Example: when intoxicated people hide something when drunk and can’t find it sober, only when intoxicated again BRAIN PROCESSES INVOLVED IN MEMORY:  ENGRAM = refers to the physical site of memory storage; term developed by K. Lashley; through his findings of training rats to run a maze and removing different areas of their cortices, he concluded that memory is distributed throughout the brain (an idea known as equipotentiality)  Memories are stored in multiple regions of the brain and linked through memory circuits  Neural specialization occurs so that different brain regions are responsible for storing different aspects of information  Types of processes: 1. THE MEDIAL TEMPORAL LOB
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