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Fiona Headley

The Multi-Store
Table of Contents
The Multi-Store Model

Table of Contents


Sensory Memory


Capacity of STM

Duration of STM

Duration of LTM

Encoding of STM

Encoding of LTM

Strengths and Weaknesses of the MSM

Module 1, Memory

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Fiona Headley

Module 1, Memory

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Fiona Headley

A model is a theory based on information processing systems such as flow charts.

The multi-store model (MSM) is made up of the sensory store, the short term memory

(STM) and the long term memory (LTM).

The sensory store is a set of modality specific stores.


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Fiona Headley

Sensory Memory
Duration of the sensory memory is less than 2 seconds.

Information in the sensory memory is relatively unprocessed.

Information is passively registered, meaning we do not control what enters our sensory


Most of the information that enters our sensory memory is lost, but some is…

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Fiona Headley

Baddeley, 1988:
Stated the iconic store of sensory memory allows us to see a continuous image and stops

our memories becoming overloaded.

Sperling, 1960:
Participants presented with charts of 3 rows of letters for 50 ms at a time, and then

immediately asked to recall as many letters…

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Fiona Headley

The STM and the LTM are different in terms of capacity, duration, encoding and

forgetting (see table below).

Store Capacity Duration Encoding Forgetting
STM 5-9 items Approx 18 secs Acoustic Displacement
LTM Unlimited Life Semantic Interference

Displacement is when items are pushed out of the…

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Fiona Headley

Free Recall Task:
Participants are presented with a list of words and asked to recall as many as they can

from the list in any order.

This results in the serial position curve graph due to the primacy-recency effect.

The primacy effect occurs because words at the beginning…

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Fiona Headley

Neuropsychological evidence:
Clive Wearing

Milner's study of HM, 1966, an epilepsy sufferer who had surgery to relieve him of

epilepsy however the surgery also made his LTM defective.

Warrington's study of KF, 1970, a motorbike rider whose STM was impaired after a

motorbike accident so that he only…

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Fiona Headley

Capacity of STM
Jacob's experiment, 1887:
Digit span technique used to measure the capacity of the STM by presenting participants

with strings of digits and asking them to repeat them in the order of presentation (serial

recall). The number of digits was increased gradually until the participant could…

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Fiona Headley

Factors affecting the capacity of the STM:
Influence of the LTM; Cowan, 2000, suggested that Miller's experiment was influenced

by the effects of the LTM, and the actual capacity of the STM was closer to 4 items.

Bower and Winzenz, 1969 also found that the more the digit…


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