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Chapter 7

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University of Toronto St. George
Gillian Rowe

PSY270 Lecture 7 Chapter 8 Long Term Memory: Everyday Memory and Memory Errors Autobiographical memory (AM): Recollected events belonging to persons past includes episodic memory for events in our lives plus personal semantic memories of facts episodic memories for distant events can fade with time and become more semantic Multidimensional nature of AM multidimensional because they consist of spatial, emotional and sensory components. Patients who suffered brain damages that caused a loss of visual memory lost ability to recognize objects, visualize and loss of AM. o Visual stimuli not available to serve as retrieval cues for memories o Memories not based on visual information also lost. o Visual experience plays an important role in forming AM. Cabeza et al: measured brain activation by 2 stimulus photos o A-photos: taken by participant (of campus) o L-photos: taken by others (same building, but possibly different view) o Found that A-photos + L-photos activated many of the same structures in the brain, that are associated with episodic memory and parietal cortex (processes scenes) o A-photos: activated regions associated with processing information about the self memory for visual space, recollection. Activated hippocampus more. o Photos taken by self activated more extensive network of brain areas reflects richness of experiencing AM. o AM elicit emotions, which activates the amygdala. Memory over the life span Reminiscence bump: enhanced memory for adolescence and young adulthood Hypothesis 1) self-image a. Rathbone et al: memory is enhanced for events that occur as a persons self-imagelife identity is being form. i. Based this on an experiment where participants with an average age of 54 made I am statements usually 25 years (span on bump) 2) cognitive a. periods of rapid change followed by stability causes stronger encoding of memories. b. Schrauf & Rubin: determined recollections of immigrants (20s vs mid 30s) i. Found that bump shifted 15 years later for those who emigrated later. 3) cultural life script a. culturally expected events that occur at a particular time in the life span b. Berntsen & Rubin: asked people to list important events in a typical life i. Falling in love 16 yrs ii. College 22 yrs iii. Marriage 27 yrs iv. Children 28 yrs v. These events happen in period associated with the reminiscence bump. c. Events in a persons life story become easier to recall when they fit the cultural life script for that persons culture. 1 www.notesolution.com
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