Cue-Dependency theory of Forgetting

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  • Cue Dependency theory of Forgetting
    • Developed by Tulving (1975) arguing that forgetting occurs when we have stored information but cannot access it because we lack the necessary cues to retrieve it
    • When we encode information we also encode details of the context and state that we were in at the time
      • These encoding cues act as additional information that guides us to the information that we're trying to retrieve
    • There are two types of cues - context cues and state cues
    • Without the cues we struggle accessing the information
    • Context dependent cues are those cues from the external environment which improve the retrieval of memories
      • Improved recall of information occurs when the context present at encoding and retrieval are similar
    • State dependent cues are those cues from our internal physiological state which are present when learning takes place
      • Improved recall of information occurs when the emotional state present at encoding and retrieval are similar
    • Context cues might include things such as smells, sounds and visual cues
    • State dependent cues might include emotions and states such as happiness, sadness, excitements, fear and being drunk

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