Psychology 1000 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Mnemonic, Echoic Memory, Semantic Memory

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Published on 10 Nov 2011
-memory refers t the processes that allow us to record and later retrieve
experiences and information
- the mind is a processing system that encodes, stores, and retrieves info
-encoding: getting info into the system by translating into a neural code that your
brain processes
-storage: involves retaining information over time
-retrieval: pulling information out of storage when we want to use it
A Three-Component Model
- Atkinson and Shiffrin model memory has 3 major components: sensory
memory, short term or “working” memory, and long-term memory
Sensory Memory:
- holds incoming sensory information just long enough for it to be recognized
- composed of different subsystems:
osensory registers: the initial information processors
oiconic store: our visual sensory register
oechoic store: the auditory sensory register
- it is difficult or impossible to retain complete information in purely visual form
for more than a fraction of a second
- echoic memory lasts longer than iconic memory (about 2 seconds)
Short-Term/Working Memory:
- holds the info we are conscious of at any given time consciously processes,
codes, and works on information
Mental Representations
- once info leaves sensory memory, it must be represented by some type of code if
it is to be retained in short-term and eventually long-term memory
- We may try to form a mental image (visual encoding), code something by sound
(phonologic encoding), or focus on the meaning of a stimulus (semantic
encoding). For physical actions we code patterns of movement (motor encoding)
Capacity and Duration:
- depending upon the stimulus, such as numbers, letters, or words, most people can
hold no more than 5-9 meaningful items in short-term memory (7, plus/minus 2)
-chunking: combining individual items to form larger units of meaning
- limited in duration as well as capacity around 20 seconds
-maintenance rehearsal: the simple repetition of information
-elaborative rehearsal: involves focusing on the meaning of information or
relating it to other things we already know more effective in transferring info
into long-term memory
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Putting short-term memory “to work”:
- cognitive scientists see short-term memory as a mental workplace that actively
and simultaneously process different types of info
- Baddeley divided working memory into 3 components:
oAuditory working memory (the phonological loop) repeating a name,
number to yourself
oVisual-spatial working memory (the visuo-spatial sketchpad) allows us
to temporarily store and manipulate images and spatial info
oCentral executive decides how much attention to allocate to mental
imagery and auditory rehearsal, calls up info from long-term, and
integrates the input occurs in prefrontal cortex
Long-Term Memory
- our vast library of already stored memories
- can form new memories until we die unlimited room for more
-serial position effect: recall is influenced by a word’s position in a series of
items. The serial position effect has two components:
oprimacy effect: easier to recall early words in the list when the first few
words are seen, there is time for rehearsal, but as more words come short-
term memory fills up
orecency effect: easier to recall the most recent words haven’t been
bumped out of short term memory yet
Effortful and Automatic Processing
-effortful processing is encoding that is initiated intentionally and requires
conscious attention
-automatic processing is encoding that occurs without intention and requires
minimal attention frequency, spatial location, sequence, and timing of events
Levels of Processing
- structural encoding what something looks like
- phonological encoding what something sounds like
- semantic encoding what something means
- Craik levels of processing concept the more deeply we process info, the
better it will be remembered semantic encoding deepest, structural shallowest
Exposure and Rehearsal
- to learn factual and conceptual information we need to employ effortful, deep
- simple repeated exposure to a stimulus without stopping to think about it is
shallow processing
-elaborative rehearsal focuses on the meaning of info, thus is much more effective
in transferring to long-term memory, as opposed to maintenance rehearsal
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Organization and Imagery
Hierarchies and Chunking
- logical hierarchy enhances our understand of how diverse elements are related,
and also makes it easier to use imagery as a cue
-chunking refers to combining individual items into a larger unit of meaning
Mnemonic Devices
- mnemonics “the art of improving memory”
- a mnemonic device is any type of memory aid (hierarchies, chunking, acronyms)
- do not reduce amount of info, but reorganize info into more meaningful units and
provide extra cues that help retrieve info from long-term memory
Visual Imagery
- Paivio said info is stored in long-term memory either in verbal codes or
nonverbal (usually visual) codes
-Dual coding theory: encoding information using both codes enhances memory,
because the odds improve that at least one of the codes will be available later to
support recall
- easier to encode abstract concepts semantically rather than visually
- ancient Greek method method of loci linking a “location” with distinct
landmarks to a list of items or concepts
How Prior Knowledge Shapes Encoding
Schemas: Our Mental Organizers
- Bartlett a mental framework or organized pattern of thought about some aspect
of the world, such as a class of people, events, situations, or objects
- we form schemas through experience, and create a perceptual set, which forces us
to organize an interpret info in a certain way
Schemas and Expert Knowledge
- acquiring expert knowledge can be viewed as a process of developing schemas –
mental frameworks – that help encode info into meaningful patterns
Memory as a Network
Associative Networks
- memory can be represented as a massive network of associated ideas and concepts
- when people think about a concept, there is a spreading activation of related
concepts throughout the network
-priming: refers to the activation of one concept by another
- explains why “hints” and mnemonic devices help stimulate our recall
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