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Chapter 8

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Psychology 1000

Psychology 1 Chapter 8: Memory Memory—the processes that allow us to record and later retrieve experiences and information; is precious and complex MEMORY AS INFORMATION PROCESSING Encoding—getting information into the system by translating it into a neural code that you brain processes (like a keyboard) Storage—involves retaining information over time. Once in the system, information must be filed away and saved (like a hard drive) Retrieval—the process of pulling information out of storage when we want to use it (like opening a file) Three components of memory: 1. Sensory memory—holds incoming sensory information just long enough for it to be recognized. Composed of different subsystems called sensory registers, which are the initial information processors. Our visual sensory register is called the iconic store and the auditory sensory register is called the echoic store 2. Short-term/working memory—holds the information that we are conscious of at any given time. It consciously processes, codes and works on information 3. Memory codes—visual, phonological, semantic, or motor encoding that stores information so it can be retained in short-term or long-term memory 4. Capacity and duration—short-term memory can hold only a limited amount of information at a time (only 5-9 meaningful items), “the magical number seven plus or minus two”. Short term memory is limited in duration as well as capacity a. Combining individual items into larger units of meaning is called chunking b. Maintenance rehearsal—the simple mental repetition of information c. Elaborative rehearsal—focusing on the meaning of info or relating it to other things we already know 5. Putting short-term memory to “work”—short term memory is a working memory— a mental workspace that actively and simultaneously processes different types of information and supports other cognitive functions, such as problem solving and planning and interacts with long term memory. There are 4 components to working memory: a. Auditory working memory b. Visual-spatial working memory c. Episodic buffer (temp. space for info to be used for something) d. Central executive (directs functions of memory) 6. Long-term memory—our vast library of more durable stored memories. We can keep forming long term memories until we die and once formed they endure for up to a lifetime Psychology 2 a. Serial position effect—recall is influenced by a word’s position in a series of items—2 components: primacy effect (due to long term memory) and recency effect (due to short term memory) ENCODING: ENTERING INFORMATION  Semantic, visual, phonological, and motor codes enable us to activate information in long term memory and access it Effortful processing—encoding that is initiated intentionally and requires conscious attention. Examples are rehearsing, making lists, and take class notes Automatic processing—encoding that occurs without intention and requires minimal attention. Examples are information about the frequency, spatial location, sequence, and timing of events Levels of processing—the more deeply we process information, the better it will be remembered. Can be shallow or deep Structural encoding—how things look Phonological encoding—how things sound Semantic encoding—what things mean  In order to learn factual and conceptual into presented in most academic or job settings, we need to employ effortful, deep processing  An organizational scheme can enhance the meaningfulness of information and also serve as a cue that helps to trigger our memory for the information it represents  Organizing material in a hierarchy takes advantage of the principle that memory is enhanced by associations between concepts  A logical hierarchy enhances our understanding of how diverse elements are related and as we proceed from top to bottom, each category can serve as a cue that triggers our memory for the associated items below it  Chunking widens the information-processing bottleneck caused by the limited capacity of short-term memory  Mnemonics—“the art of improving memory”. A mnemonic device is anything that aids memory. Examples are chunking and hierarchy Psychology 3  Some researchers argue that acronyms don’t aid memory unless you are already familiar with the material  Allan Paivio proposes that info is stored in long-term memory in 2 forms: verbal codes and nonverbal codes. He also has the dual coding theory  Dual coding theory—encoding info using both codes enhances memory, because the odds improve that at least one of the codes will be available later to support recall  Abstract concepts are easier to encode semantically than visually  Greeks developed an effective and well-known imagery technique called the method of loci (places). To use this technique, imagine a physical environment with a sequences of distinct landmarks  Typically, we remember the gist of information rather than every word or picture, we remember just enough to know the general concept  The themes we extract from events are organized around schemes  Schema—a mental framework, an organized pattern of thought about some aspect of the world, such as a class of people, events, situations or objects  Schemas create a perceptual set, which is a readiness to perceive—to organize and interpret—information in a certain way  Your own “expert schemas” strongly influence what you encode and remember (what you know really well will be remembered better than things you don’t know) STORAGE: RETAINING INFORMATION Associative network—the view that long-term memory is organized as a massive network of associated ideas and concepts (fire engine leads to red which leads to strawberries and so on) Priming—refers to the activation of one concept by another Neural network—a model in which each concept stored in memory is represented by a unique pattern of distributed and simultaneously activated nodes that process information in parallel; also known as a parallel distributed processing model (PDP) Declarative memory—involves factual knowledge and includes 2 categories (verbalized) 1. Sodic memory—our store of factual knowledge concerning personal experiences: when where what in the episodes of our lives Psychology 4 2. Semantic memory—represents general factual knowledge about he world and language, including memory for words and concepts Procedural memory—is reflected in skills and actions. One component consists of skills that are expressed by doing things. Classically conditioned r
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