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PSYC 2110 Chapter Notes -Memory Span, Implicit Memory, Implicit Cognition


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 2110
Professor
Gillian Wu

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CH 9: INFORMATION-PROCESSING PERSPECTIVE (there are many different
theories associated w. the I.P.P. (discussed below)
How is the human mind similar to a computer:
o Both have a limited capacity to process info (limited hard/software)
Hardware: the brain, neural cnxtion’s and sensory receptors
Software: mental programs that allow info to be stored, retrieved and
analyzed
o As ones hardware improves, it leads to their software improving and
they can perform cognitive tasks w. increase speed/accuracy
THE MULTISTORE MODEL
Model is used to understand how ppl think; components of the model follow:
Sensory store: holds raw sensory input as an afterimage of what you sensed
(separate registers for each of your senses) and they can hold a lot of info, for
a short period of time things can disappear w.out being processed
Short-term store (STS): when you attend to info you can store 5-9 pieces of
it for several seconds (if its not rehearsed, it is lost) STS aka = working mem
Long-term store (LTS): permanent storehouse of info includes your k.l on
the world, past experiences/events and strategies you developed for
processing info
o Ppl are active w. their memory: they decide what they’ll attend to &
how they process it - known as control processes/executive fn’s E.F
Metacognition: k.l of ones cognitive abilities and processes related to
thinking (similar idea to executive functions)
DEVELOPMENT OF THE MULTISTORE MODEL
Dev Difference in Hardware: Information-Processing Capacity
Memory span: # of rapidly presented and unrelated items that a person can
recall in exact order (memory span test are used to measure ones STS)
o The amount of things someone can keep in mind increases w. age, but
children that are an expert in a field can rapidly process info in that
field (at a quicker rate than adults)
The age related differences that are associated w. memory span are due
maturation myelination and pruning could be the cause
Span of apprehension: # of items ppl can keep in their mind at one time
Dev Difference in Software: Strategies and What Children Know Abt Thinking
Strategies: subset of E.F.: goal directed operations 4 aiding task performance
o Most strategies children used are taught in school; difference in
children’s strategies can lead to age-different cognitive capacities
Studies have shown that children who are trained to use new strategies and
benefit from its use; children display production deficiencies (even if they
are capable of putting effective strategies to use, they fail to produce these)
Utilization deficiency: even when children are trained on a new strategy
they fail to benefit immediately from its use (reasons for this are below):
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o (1) They use all their mental effort for execution that they have few
cognitive resources left for storing info relevant to the task
o (2) Many child just use the new strategy to try something new
o (3) May not be aware that they are failing to benefit from it
Adaptive strategy choice model: describes children’s multiple strategy use
and how strategies change over time children have many strategies they
can use and they compete to “win”; old strategies never die, but they just wait
until the new strategies cannot be used to produce a correct answer
o Shows that strategies don’t develop as stagelike, but rather as
overlapping waves (figure 8.4 on page 306)
Implicit cognition: unconscious thought i.e. knowing how to speak a lang
w.out knowing all the rules to the lang
Explicit cognition: conscious thinking (much of the richness of ones
cognition comes from this type)
Younger children think that they have greater control over their thoughts
then they actually do (the mind will think about things even if you have no
interest in thinking about that topic)
Most infant/young children's k.l is implicit (so think learning develops early
in life)
o There are few age difference found of test of implicit memory, but
there are a lot of age differences w. explicit learning
Fuzzy-trace theory: important dev differences in how children represent
info to solve problems ppl encode experiences on a continuum from literal
(verbatim) traces to fuzzy [preserve the content w.out much detail] (gistlike)
traces
o Fuzzy traces are accessed easier and need less effort to use; verbatim
traces are also more susceptible to forgetting than fuzzy traces
o Ex: comparing the prices of 2 shirts at different stores exact price
(verbatim) is forgotten, but your still able to remember which store
had the cheaper price (fuzzy)
Children are biased to encoding verbatim traces; adults prefer fuzzy young
children may process things slower, bc they focus on unnecessary verbatim
detail that consume most of their cognitive resources
Development of Attn
Young children have short attn spans cannot sustain attn for very long;
children are not able to inhibit the intrusion of task irrelevant thoughts
o Maturation of the reticular formation leads to increased sustain attn
Young children also have little ability to display selective attn (ability to
concentrate only on task-relevant stimuli not be distracted by noise in the
environment) older kids are better at concentrating on relevant info and
filter out extraneous input
Older children are also better at inhibiting certain processes young
children have a difficult time executing anything other than their preferred
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