Description of the MSM

Atkinson and Shiffrin (1968)

sensory memory:- information collected by the senses, if a person pays attention it gets transferred to the STM if not it is lost

STM:- events in the present and immediate past, info decays quickly due to its limited capacity Miller (1956) magic number 7 +/- 2, rehearsal aids memory and allows it to be passed on to the LTM, verbal or writing rehearsal, new information will displace old information, maintenance rehearsal keeps it in the short term, elaborative rehearsal passes it to the LTM & primacy and recency effect Murdock (1962)

LTM:- more distant past memories, strength of the memories depend on the rehearsal 

(cognitive approach)

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Evidence for the MSM (duration)

SM:- duration - Sperling (1960) asked ppts to look at a grid of letters for 50 milliseconds- when asked to recall they could only name 4/5- Sperling then dedicated a high, medium or low pitch tone to each row and asked the ppts to recall the letters they saw at the time of the appropriate tone- proves the SM has very little duration couple of seconds.

STM:- duration- Peterson and Peterson (1959)- asked to remember a set of codes involving numbers and letters, asked for recall at 3 seconds (90%) and 18 seconds after counting backwards from 100 in 3s or 4s (2%)- suggests that when rehearsal is prevented the STM only lasts approximately 20 seconds 

LTM:- duration - Bahrick et al (1975) asked participants ranging from 17-75 about their classmates in high school- were asked to put names to faces- 48 years later ppts were about 70% accurate- shows how long memory can be when there is meaning to it. HOWEVER it is unsure whether the poorer memories after 48 years are due to forgetting or other general memory problems

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Evidence for the MSM (capacity)

STM:- capacity- Jacobs (1887) found that recall for numbers averaged 9 digits and letters averaged 7 (maybe because there are only 7 numbers) & Miller (1956) found the magic number 7 +/- 2 chunks not just items- a chunk is a meaningful collection of items e.g. FIFA or BBC HOWEVER Cowen (2001) says that it's more likely to be four chunks than seven

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Evidence for the MSM (encoding)

semantic coding is coding information to do with it's meaning and acoustic coding is coding information in terms of its sound 

Baddeley (1966)- tested the effects of acoustic and semantic similarity on STM and LTM recall- found that ppts had more difficulty remembering acoustically similar words in the STM but not in the LTM, whereas semantically similar words posed little problem in the STM but not the LTM.

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Strengths and Weaknesses of the MSM

strengths- first model that produced testable predictions, the facts it was a scientific method meant that a wealth of information could be produced to test it and further understand memory

weaknesses- reductionistic- MSM states that the STM is just one store whereas the Working Model (Baddeley and Hitch) suggests that this is not true, this is also a similar case for the LTM which can be divided into semantic, episodic and procedural. Logie (1999) points out that the STM relies on the LTM therefore shouldn't come first as the MSM suggests e.g. if you look at this list of letters, WHHDKKSLOFNCSH- you need to use LTM to find the semantically memorable letters before you can rehearse them into your STM- therefore the LTM and the STM work together

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