Memory

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  • Memory
    • Memory - The mental function of retaining information. It is a storage system which holds this information and it’s the actual information.
    • Coding - the way information is changes so it can be stored in memory.
    • Storage - information is stored in the memory system
    • Retrieval - recovering the stored information from the memory system.
    • Duration
      • Bahrick et al. showed that the duration of the LTM can last a lifetime.
        • They tested 400 people aged 17-74.
        • Used a photo recognition test which consisted of some photos of their old classmates to test memory.
        • Participants who were tested within 15 years of graduating were 90% correct with identifying faces. However participants who were tested within 48 years of graduation were 70% correct for photo recognition.
        • This study had mundane realism as it was like real life and not artificial.
    • Capacity
      • The capacity of the STM is worked out using Digit Span
        • Jacobs used his technique to asses the STM capacity. He found that digit span was 9.3 for items and 7.3 for letters. He stated that it was easier to recall digits than letters as there are only 9 digits.
        • Miller concluded that 'The Magic Number' is 7+-2. This is the span of immediate memory. However we sometimes chunk things together so we can remember more.
          • The capacity of STM may be even more limited as Cowan reviewed studies and found that the capacity is more likely to be limited to four chunks.
          • The capacity of STM is not the same for everyone. Jacobs found that recall increases with age. Therefore children remember less than adults.
    • Coding
      • Coding - the way information is changes so it can be stored in memory.
      • Information can be held in various forms such as visual (images), acoustic (sounds), or semantic (meaning).
      • Baddley tested the effects of semantic and acoustic similarity on the STM
        • He used words such as cat and cab (acoustically similiar yet semantically different ) and great and large (acoustically different yet semantically similar).
        • He found that participants had difficulty remembering acoustically similar words in the STM but not in the LTM, whereas semantically similar words posed little problems for STM's but muddled LTM's.
        • He concluded that the STM is largely encoded acoustically whereas the LTM is largely encoded semantically.
        • The STM may not be exclusively acoustic. Brandimote et al. found that participants use visual coding in the STM if given a visual task but prevented from using verbal rehearsal before a visual recall test. Also other research has shown that the STM sometimes codes semantically.
        • The LTM may not be exclusively semantic. Frost, Nelson and Rothbart found evidence of acoustic coding in the LTM. Coding in the LTM is not simply acoustic or semantic but varies according to circumstance.

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