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Chapter 7

Chapter 7 - Memory.docx

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University of Toronto St. George
Dax Urbszat

Chapter 7 – Human Memory  Semantic memory: memory for general information  Episodic memory: memory for personal events, allows us to “time travel” (Tulving’s K.C. did not have it)  Encoding: getting info in, forming a memory code, requires attention (entering data in a computer)  Storage: maintaining encoded info in memory over time (saving a file)  Retrieval: recovering info from memory stores (opening up a file)  Active encoding is a crucial process in memory and requires attention  next in line effect, don’t remember what the person before you said cuz didn’t pay attention or encode the info  Attention involves focusing awareness on a narrowed range of stimuli or events  Selective attention is crucial for a life without chaos  Attention is filter that screens out most potential stimuli but allows selected few to pass through  Debate whether the stimuli are screened out early (during sensory input), or late (after the brain has processed the meaning or significance of the input)  Cocktail party phenomenon: talking in a party with someone, but as soon as you hear your name in another conversation you notice it without having been paying attention to that convo  late selection based on meaning of input  Late, early and intermediate selection have all been supported by scientific evidence  some suggest that the location of the filter is flexible and depends on our “cognitive load”  When doing high-load tasks, consumed most of attentional capacity, selection tends to occur early  Low-load tasks, attentional capacity left over to process meaning of distraction  later selection  Hard to focus attention on two or more inputs at once, devided attention between memory encoding and some other task  large reductions in memory performance  Situlus | recognition of meaning | response slection  response  Models of selection, early selecting filter before recognition of meaning, late selection is after the recognition of meaning, we may be able to move the filter back and forth between these two extremes  Human brain can only effectively handle one attention-consuming task at a time, when multitasking just switching attention back and forth among tasks, not processing them simultaneously  Some info that we want to intentionally remember  encoded as a result of effortful processing  Some info acquired more automatically, e.g. frequency of words  Verbal elaboration strategy to remember found to be associated with activity in a network of regions including prefrontal cortex  Visual imagery strategy 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  Dealing with verbal info, people engage in three progressively deeper levels of processing resulting in longer lasting memory:  Structural encoding: shallow processing, emphasizes physical structure of the stimulus (eg. Capital letters)  Phonemic encoding: how a word sounds like, naming or saying (out lout or silently) the words  Semantic encoding: meaning of verbal input, thinking about objects and actions the words represent  Time required for processing is not a good indicator of the depth or level of processing, impossible to design a task in which structural encoding takes longer than semantic encoding, processing time is not a reliable index of depth  Elaboration, visual imagery, and self-referent coding can enrich the encoding process and improve memory  Elaboration is linking a stimulus to other info at the time of encoding  Thinking of examples that illustrate an idea effect memory dramatically, self-generated example would probably be more valuable in enhancing memory.  Additional association created by elaboration helps people remember info  Visual Imagery: creation of visual images to represent the words to be remembered, also enhances memory  Easier to form images of concrete objects than of abstract concepts, ease of image formation affects memory, high imagery words are easier to remember  Imagery facilitates memory because it provides a second kind of memory code.  Dual coding theory: memory is enhanced by forming semantic and visual codes, since either can lead to recall.  Self-referent encoding: making info personally meaningful, deciding how or whether info is personally relevant  Self-referent encoding seems to enhance recall by promoting additional elaboration and better organization of info  Self-referent encoding used as research tool to show that depressed people have more negative content as part of their self-prototype  Aristotle and Plato compared memory to a black of wax that differed in size and hardness for various individuals  Information-processing theories (analogy to info storage by computers_ subdivided memory into three separate memory stores: Two short temporary buffers (sensory store and short-term store), and long-term store  Sensory memory preserves info in its original sensory form for a brief time (a fraction of a second) giving you additional time to try to recognize the stimuli  Sensation of a visual pattern, sound or touch to linger for a brief moment after the sensory stimulation is over, eg. Afterimages  Memory trace in the visual sensory store decays in about ¼ of a second, auditory traces also last less than a second Short-term Memory: limited-capacity store that can maintain unrehearsed info for up to about 20 seconds  Rehearsal: process of repetitively verbalizing or thinking about the information alloews maintain info in STM indefinitely  Maintenance Rehearsal: simply maintaining info In consciousness  Elaborative rehearsal: increasing the probability that you will retain the info in the future (eg. Meaning of words)  Durability of Storage: loss of info from short-term memory due to time-related decay of memory traces but also due to interference from competing material  STM has limited capacity (about 7 unrelated items), constrains people’s ability to perform tasks in which they need to mentally juggle various pieces of info  Can increase capacity of STM by grouping familiar stimuli as a single unit called chunks  Draw info from longterm memory to evaluate and understand info in STM  Experts in a field chunk infor differently and more effectively  better able to remember things related to that field e.g. chessmasters STM as Working Memory:  STM not limited to phonemic encoding, decay is not the only process responsible for the loss of info  Working memory (by Baddeley) has four components:  Phonological loop: evolved to facilitate the acquisition of language, eg. when you recite a phone number  Visuospatial sketchpad: permits people to temporarily hold and manipulate visual images e.g. arranging furniture in your mind  Central executives system: controls deployment of attention, switching the focus of attenintion and dividing it as needed, also coordinates actions of the other modules  Episodic Buffer: temporary, limited-capacity store that allows the various components of working memory to integrate info, also works as an interface between working memory an long- term memory  Separate components of working memory work individually.  Variations in working memory capacity correlate with measures of high-level cognitive abilities  Working memory capacity plays a fundamental role in complex cognitive processes Long-Term Memory: unlimited capacity store that can hold info over lengthy periods of time  One theory is that LTM can store info permanently, only forgot cuz you cant retrieve info, however no convincing evidence to support it.  Long lasting memories triggered by ESB (evidence for permanent theory) but the memories where hallucinations and inaccurate  Flashbulb memories (unusually vivid and detailed recollection of momentous events) are also evidence for permanent storage (eg. Where were you when Sidney Crosby scored the goal) but they are not as accurate or special as once believed, become less detailed and complete with time, often inaccurate.  Originally believed that STM depended on phonemic encoding and LTM on emantic encoding, STM info loss was due to time-related decay while LTM info loss due to interference. These distinction have been undermined by research evidence: semantic encoding and interference effects found in STM  Other perspectives on STM and LTM is that STM is a tiny and constantly chanign portion of LTM, another view is that there is only one single, generic momory store governed by one set of rules and processes. Clustering and Conectual Hierarchies:  Spontaneously organize factual info into categories for storage in memory, clustering or remembering similar or related items in groups.  When possible this info is organized into conceptual hierarchies: multilevel classification system based on common properties among items Schemas (prof’s office example): organized cluseter of knowledge about aparticular object or event abstracted from previous experience with the object or event  People are more likely to remember things that are consisten with their schemas than things that are not.  People sometimes exhibit better recall of things that violate their schema-based expectation (might attract more attention and deeper processing)  Relational schemas: representations of typical events surround interpersonal interactions that represent regularities in your interpersonal experience, affect the way you process info about other s and yourself. Semantic Networks: consist of nodes representing concepts, joined together by pathways that link related concepts (e.g. thinking about butter leads to bread, thoughts naturally go to related words, called spreading activation)  Ovals are notes, works inside the ovals are interlinked concepts, the lines connecting the nodes are the pathways, the shorter the pathway the stronger the association Connectionist Networks and Parallel Distributed Processing Models: assume that cognitive processes depend on patterns of activation in highly interconnected computational networks that resemble neural networks.  Consists of nodes or computing units, operate like neurons, be inactive or may send either excitatory or inhibitory signals to other units.  Specific memories correspond to particular patterns of activation in these networks  Different from semantic networks since nodes don’t represent specific concepts or pieces of knowledge, but a piece of knowledge is represented by a particular pattern of activation across an entire network, info lies in strengths of the connections.  A node’s level of activation reflects the weighted balance of excitatory and inhibitory inputs from many other units.  Inspired by how neural networks appear to handle info; parallel distributed processing Retrieval:  Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon – temporary inablility to remember soemtihing you know, accompanied by a feeling that it’s just out of reach.  Retrieval cues: stimuli that help gain access to memories  Encoding specificity principle: memory for info would be better when conditions during encoding and retrieval were similar.  Cues used at retrieval will facilitate recall iff the info about them and about their relation to the to-be-remembered words is stored at the same time as the to-be-remembered info  Context Cues, eg. Going back to an old home, enhance memory recalling, used on eyewitnesses  Hypnosis often increases subjects’ tendencies to report incorrect info.  Cues also related to state and mood-dependent effects too, eg. Better recall of info gathered when intoxicated while you are intoxicated.  State dependent memory effects are more easily obsereved for free-recall conditions than for more readily observed for recognition or cued-recall where retrieval cues are more abundant.  Negative emotions may increase one’s susceptibility to false memories, misinformation effect.  When pull info from LTM, memories are sketchy reconstructions of the past that may be distorted and my include details that did not actually occur (eg. War of ghost example)  Part of memories are the details of the event and part of it is the reconstruction of the event based on their schemas  Misinformation effect (partly due to to unreli
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