Psychology 2010A/B Chapter Notes - Chapter 3: Long Term Ecological Research Network, Context-Dependent Memory, Psych

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Psych 2010A
Chapter 3 - Attention
two characteristics of attention: focalization and concentration
focalization implies selectivity
selective part of attention prevents us from being overload with information
bottleneck theories: a theory that attempts to explain how people select information
when some information-processing stage become overloading with too much
concentration: investing mental effort into a task
mental effort: the amount of mental capacity required to perform a task
mental effort can be measured using the fMRI - uses blood flow to detect activity
capacity theory: a theory that proposes that we have a limited amount of mental effort
to distribute across tasks, so there are limitations on the number of tasks we can
perform at the same time
as the number of items increase, a limited amount of attention must be distributed
over more patterns
Bottleneck Theories
Broadbentʼs Filter Model
the proposition that a bottleneck occurs at the pattern recognition stage and that
attention determines what information reaches the pattern recognition stage
limited-capacity perceptual channel: the pattern recognition stage of Broadbentʼs
model, which is protected by the filter (attention) from becoming overloaded with
too much perceptual information
takes time to switch attention (the flap, filter)
the shift has to occur before the information entering the unattended ear decays
from the auditory sensory store
limitation: sensory store would have to last fairly long to operate as proposed,
otherwise the information would decay before it could be recognized
Treismanʼs Attenuation Model
shadowing a message provides proof that the listener is following instructions and
attending to the correct ear - requires the people to repeat the message out loud
contextual effects: the influence of the surrounding context on the recognition of
the contextual cues were not sufficient to cause subjects to change permanently to
the unattended message in order to follow the meaning of the passage
proposed that the model consisted of two parts: a selective filter and a dictionary
the filter in this model does not completely block the message, but rather
attenuates it, making it less likely to be heard
the recognition of a word occurs in a dictionary when the threshold of a word is
surpassed (the loudness the word needs to be said in order to be recognized)
The Deutsch-Norman Memory Selection Model
the two former models proposed that the bottleneck occurs after the pattern
recognition stage
this is an example of a late-selection model
says that all patterns are recognized, but only words selected into LTM can be
Capacity Theories
mental effort (capacity) is required for late selection after pattern recognition than for
early selection before pattern recognition
example of a capacity model:
capacity theories are concerned with the amount of mental effort that is required to
perform a task
his capacity model was designed to supplement, rather than to replace the
bottleneck theories
a bottleneck theory proposes that interference occurs because the same
mechanism (i.e. listening) is required to carry out two tasks at the same time
a capacity theory proposes that interference occurs when the demands of two
activities exceed available capacity
allocation of capacity: when a limited amount of capacity is distributed to various
enduring dispositions: an automatic influence where people direct their attention.
momentary intentions: reflect our specific goals or objectives at a particular time
Capacity and Stage of Selection
Johnston and Heinz had a theory proposed where the listener has control over the
location of the
called their theory a multimode theory - a theory that proposes that peopleʼs
intentions and the demands of the task determine the information processing stage
at which information is selected
as the system shifts from an early to a late mode of selection, it collects more
information about the secondary message, but this reduces the capacity to
understand the primary message.
subsidiary task: a task that typically measures how quickly people can react to a
target stimulus to evaluate the capacity demands of the primary task
more capacity is required to perform at a late mode of selection
two lists should require more capacity than listening to one list, which should
require no more capacity than listening to no list.
model has both an early (filtering mechanism) and a late (semantic analysis) stage
of selection
Automatic Processing
automatic processing: performing mental operation that require very little mental
effort - skills - occurs without conscious awareness
when is a skill automatic?
occurs without intention
does not give rise to conscious awareness
does not interfere with other mental activities
Stroop effect: the finding that it takes longer to name the color of the ink a word is
printed in when the word is the name of a competing color (i.e. the word red printed
in blue ink)
Automatic Encoding
incidental learning: learning that occurs when we do not make a conscious effort to
frequency information is data that specifies how often different stimuli occur
spatial information is data about where object occur in the environment
temporal information is data about when or for how long events occur
5 criteria to distinguish between automatic and effortful processing
intentional vs. incidental learning
effect of instruction and practice
task interference - automatic process should not be affected by task inteference
depression or high arousal - automatic processing should not be affected by
emotional states
developmental trends - automatic processing show little change with age
Automatic Processing and Reading
learning to read requires many component skills such as recognizing features,
letters, words, understand the meanings and symbols, etc
words should require less capacity to recognize if we can recognize the word as a
unit rather than a string of four letters