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Chapter 8

Psychology 2135A/B Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Soltyrei, Cerebral Circulation, Mnemonic

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Robert Brown

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Chapter 8 - Visual Imagery and Spatial Cognition
- visual images: mental representation of a stimulus thought to share at least some properties
with a pictorial or spatial depiction of the stimulus
- besides visual, other mental images exist like auditory images, cutaneous (feeling)
- visual images cannot be seen, counted, or controlled by others
- distortions or biases can occur easily
- those who use imagery are better able to recall information than those who do not
- Martin et al., (1999) showed athletes who spends time mentally imagining an excellent
performance tend to perform better
- Ayduk et al. (2002) suggest imagery can be used to cope with negative emotional events by
visualizing "cool" aspects of experience (e.g., where they were in space)
Mnemonics and Memory Codes
- many but not all involve construction of mental pictures or images
- mnemonics: strategies to facilitate retention and later retrieval of information
- method of loci: method that requires learner to visualize an ordered series of physical locations
as mnemonic cues for a list of information
- Bower (1970) gave principles for using the method of loci
- 1. use a list of cues that you know well
- 2. cues must be memory images of geographic locations
- 3. associations must be formed between the items and cue locations
- 4. associations between cue locations and items must be one to one
- 5. use imagery, especially visual imagery, to form associative links
- 6. use interactive images to link item and its cue location
- 7. if study items more than once, same cue location used for a given item
- 8. during recall, cue your own memory by using list of locations
- 9. use same recall cues that you used during study
- Ross and Lawrence (1968) showed students using method of loci could recall up to 92.5% of
words after one presentation (38 out of 40)
- another technique is interacting images
- Kirkpatrick (1894) showed that recall improved when participants told to form images
of words
- Bower (1970) showed participants told to form images in paired-associates learning had
better recall; showed to maximize effect, images should interact
- another technique is pegword method
- involves picturing items with set of ordered cues e.g., from a memorized rhyming list
-- picture first item interacting with the first word on memorized list
- Bugelski et al (1968) showed this method improves recall as long as participants given
4 seconds or more per item to form images
- another method is recoding; adding extra words or sentences to mediate memory and material
e.g., Every good boy deserves fudge
- research shows mixed results
- arranging material into categories helps organize material which can help recall

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- Arbuthnott (2005) showed using visualization that fake autobiographical memories could seem
real, especially through repetition
The Dual-Coding Hypothesis
- dual-coding hypothesis: Paivio (1969); LTM can code information in two distinct ways,
verbally and visually, and that items coded both ways are more easily recalled than items coded
in only one way
- verbal contains abstract, linguistic meaning
- Paivio (1965) showed that in paired-association learning, pairs where both words were concrete
objects were recalled better
- due to formation of visual images
- Paivio (1969) assumed visual imagery, unlike verbal labeling, increases as a function of
concreteness; more concrete the noun, the richer the image
- helps explain why pictures are often remembered better than words
- Paivio also believed first noun in a pair serves as a conceptual peg for the second noun to hook
- problems are how well it explains workings of imagery mnemonics and what kind of
explanations it provides for nonimagery mnemonics
Relational-Organizational Hypothesis
- relational-organizational hypothesis: Bower (1970); visual imagery aids memory by
producing a greater number of associations
- Bower (1970) showed that only participants using interacting images did better than
participants using rehearsal in recall
- showed that just visualizing imagery is not enough
- the way imagery is used matters
- interacting images presumably create more links
Empirical Investigations of Imagery
- Brooks (1968) showed that images and words use different kinds of internal codes
- had people do visual or verbal task along with another visual or verbal task
- those that had tasks of same kind had poorer performance, probably due to interference
- Moyer (1973) found people faster to respond when two objects differed greatly
- called symbolic-distance effect
- occurred for both visual images and actual images
Mental Rotation of Images
- Shepard and Metzler (1971) showed that angle of rotation for objects was directly proportional
to response time
- time was same for rotations in plane and depth; suggest rotating a 3-D image instead of
a 2-D one
- mental rotation: form an image of a stimulus and then imagine how it would look as it rotates
around a horizontal or vertical axis
- Cooper and Shepard (1973, 1975) showed participants mentally rotated more recognizable
stimuli e.g., letters
- Cooper and Shepard (1973) showed can rotate clockwise or counterclockwise
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