Unit 1 Cognitive

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  • Created on: 09-03-14 14:55

Definition of Approach

The cognitive approach is a way of explaining human behaviour, by the influence of mental processes. For example, perception, problem solving and memory. A model can be used to understand the flow of information through the cognitive sytem. An example is information processing which involves input, process and output

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Key Assumption - Information Processing

  • a model that allows us to understand the flow of information through the cognitive system; input, process to output
  • we recieve information via our senses = input
  • we encode it (tranform it for brain understanding)
  • we process it
  • output (e.g. speech or behaviour)
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Key Terms

  • Memory = cognitive function used to retain information and recall it when needed 
  • Forgetting = inability to recall or recognise something previously learnt
  • Storage= place to retain information
  • Retrieval= process of locating and extracting stored memories for use
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Methodology - Key terms

  • method establishes if there is a cause-effect relationship between 2+ variables
  • independent variable =change
  • dependent variable = measure 
  • operationalistation = create own measurement for D.V, precisely define how to measure DV and alter conditions of IV


  • hypotheses= prediciton
  • experiemental hypotheses = change as IV effect DV
  • null hypotheses = no effect and if so due to chance
  • directional (one-tailed) = specific effect
  • non-directional = (two-tailed) = effect but not specific
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Methodology - Key terms 2

  • extraneous variables = any variable but IV that influences findings, two types;
  • situational variables = environment or situation (e.g noise, location or time)
  • participant variables = themselves (e.g. age, gender, mood)
  • confounding variables = variable affects findings so much no longer measure what intended
  • experimenter effects = body language or inadvertent hints (use double-blinded technique)
  • demand characteristics = cue making participant aware of nature of task or expected behaviour. Change outcome of experiment to conform to expectations. 
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Experiment types - laboratory

  • tightly controlled environment
  • IV directly manipulated by researcher
  • control extraneous variables = results more reliable and replicatable = find cause-effect relationship
  • standardised  = easy replicate = more reliable
  • artificial environment and task = artificial behaviour = low ecological validity = increase risk of demand characteristics and experimenter effects
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Experiment types - field

  • natural environment
  • IV directly manipulated by researcher
  • high ecological validity = natural
  • less demand characteristics = participants unaware
  • less control= more influence of extraneous variables = less replicatable
  • ethical issues = consent, deception, privacy
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Experiment types - natural

  • natural environment
  • IV not directly manipulated by researcher
  • more ecological validity= natural IV and environment
  • no demand characteristics and no bias sample= unaware
  • difficult repeat = IV not manipulated
  • hard to prove cause-effect relationship= minimal control of extraneous variables
  • ethical issues = consent, deception, privacy
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Experiment designs - independent measures

  • participant in one condition only
  • no order effects (carying out task repeatedly can change performance) - fatigue effect or practise effect
  • less chance of demand characteristics
  • individual differences could mask effect or imply effect that is non-existent
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Experiment designs - repeated measures

  • participant in all conditions
  • no participant variables= same people used
  • more efficent= less people needed= saves time and cost 
  • order effects like fatigue effect or practise effect
  • demand characteristics
  • use counterbalanced design/ randonisation = participants in all conditions but different orders
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Experiment designs - matched pairs

  • participant in one condition but mathced based on important factors
  • less participant variables = matched 
  • no order effects= one condition
  • participant varibales= matched but individual differences
  • less efficent= more people= time and cost
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Memory Studies - Levels of Processing- description

  • semantic= meaning=deep processing =strong memory trace
  • phonetic=sounds
  • structural=looks=shallow processing= weak memory trace

Levels of Processing is needed to explain the transfer of info into LTM without rehersal.

Memory is a consequence of how we proces information. 

Deep processing is a form of elaborative rehersal (expands upon material and retains long time).

LoP shows difference of elaborative rehersal and maintence rehersal (retains items for short time).


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Memory Studies - Levels of Processing- evaluation

For: supporting research 

  • Craik & Tulving = semantic words recalled best on word list
  • Hyde & Jenkins = semantic words recalled best on word list

Applications

  • student revision notes need meaning to be recalled in exam

Against: research 

  • Morris = phonetic words best recalled on word list

Alternative theories

  • Multi-store model of memory = memory transferred from STM to LTM by rehersal
  • imagery and emotionality= leave lasting memory traces
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Memory Studies - Multi store model - description

  • sensory storage = register= senses
  • attention
  • STM= store =18-30 secs= 5-9 items
  • rehersal
  • LTM= store= infinite items and durations
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Memory Studies - Multi store model - evaluation

For: supporting research

  • Peterson & Peterson = preventing rehersal causes forgetting, not transfered from STM to LTM
  • Clive Wearing = damage to hippocampus prevents STM to LTM = 2 stores
  • Glanzer & Cunitz = word list first and last words remembered best (primary and recency effect) = 2 stores

Application

  • revision = rehersal for STM to LTM
  • eye witness testimony = rehersal needed to be accurate

Against: Alternative theories

  • Levels of Processing = process deeply for LTM not rehersal
  • imagery and emotionality = leave memory trace
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Forgetting studies - Cue dependent - description

  • when we encode a new memory, also store information occured around it= retrieval cues
  • forget= not same situation= lack retrieval cues to locate in LTM
  • external retrieval cues= context (e.g. room)
  • internal retrieval cues = state (e.g. feelings)
  • encoding specificity principle = greater similarity between encoding event and retrieval even more likely to remember
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Forgetting studies - Cue dependent - evaluation

For: supporting research

  • Godden & Baddley= lack of retrieval cues cause divers to forget in different environment
  • Smith = words learnt t jazz or mozart, best recalled with same music

Application

  • Revision = no music, none in exam
  • Police TV reconstruction = designed similar enviroment to cue memories
  • Eyewitness testimony = back to scene for best recall, cues
  • recollect childhood memories

Against: Alternative theories

  • Trace decay = learning causes physical trace, disintergrates if not rehearsed
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Forgetting studies - trace decay- description

  • learning cause phyical change in neural network = memory engram
  • connects to neurons
  • more use info = strengthen trace
  • less use info = decays = forgetting = time or disuse
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Forgetting studies - trace decay - evaluation

For: supporting research

  • Peterson & Peterson = rehersal prevention causes decay
  • Penfield = probed brains of epileptics and found certain areas of brain held certain memories

Application

  • Alzheimers = lose memories, not inability to retrieve
  • Eye Witness Testimony = rheresal for accurate account
  • Revision = rehersal for trace in exam

Against: Research

  • Hall = remember algebra from school if practise, trace not lost

Alternative theory

  • Cue dependent = accesibility problem, forgetting because of lack of retrieval cues
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Practical - Cue dependent - description

AIM: To test if environment act as context cue to aid recall of word list, and if absence of cue prevents recall.

METHOD:

  • laboratory 
  • control extraneous variables for cause- effect relationship   
  • demand characteristics= low ecological validity= artificial task and environment
  • IV environmet of recall - same or different to learning
  • DV number of words recalled
  • repeated measures (same p. both condtions) = order effect but compare
  • experimental directional hypothesis: memory of words better in same location as learning, than different location
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Practical - Cue dependent - description

PROCEDURE:

  • p. selected by oppurtunity sampling
  • p. used in both conditions (repeated measures) with seperate word list for each condition
  • p. briefed and gave informed consent, p. assured of confidentiality and right to withdraw
  • p. seated first room, shown 20 words, one at time on powerpoint, each word 3 secs
  • condition 1 learn and recall same room condition 2 learn and recall different room
  • after 2 mins grous given blank paper and pen, asked recall all words could in 2 mins
  • both groups debriefed
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Practical - Cue dependent - description

RESULTS:

  • cued = same room = 12.45 words recalled (average)
  • non cued = different room = 12.72 words recalled (average)

CONCLUSION:

  • experimental hypothesis not supported - better recall in different room than same room - cue dependent theory not supported by results

 

 

 

 

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Practical - Cue dependent - evaluation

GENERALISABILTY:

  • sample of  22 not sufficent to draw conclusion - too small
  • p. students Itchen College age 16 to 19 - only applicable to young adults at Itchen College
  • oppurtunity sampling - could pick desired characteristics

RELIABILITY:

  • standardised brief, debrief and procedure - increase reliabilty - all same experience
  • repeated measures - order effect - practise effect
  • lab experiment - control extraneous variables - cause effect relationship
  • lab - experimenter effect + demand characateristics (aware of study)

 

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Practical - Cue Dependent - Evaluation

APPLICATION:

  • eye witness testimony - witness back crime scene or recreate to cue more memories
  • educational environments - exam preparation

VALIDITY:

  • artifical task - word list - low ecological validity
  • artificial environment - low ecological validity

ETHICS:

  • brief and debrief
  • informed consent
  • right to withdraw
  • confidentiality

 

 

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Detail study _ Godden & Baddley_Context forgetting

AIM:

  • investigate if natural environment acts as cue for recall
  • test Tulving's encoding specificity principle

PROCEDURE:

  • 4 days long in Scotland, scheduled dives to ensure same wet cold state
  • 18 p. all from Uni diving club randomly allocated learning and recall area (4 combinations)
  • 38 unrelated 2/3 syllable words on list
  • tested 2 at a time
  • divers recieved words by tape recording via communciation device (4 sec pauses for breathing apparatus)
  • words repeated twice, delay 4 mins between learn and recall, 2 mins recall
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Detail study_Godden& Baddley_Context forgetting

RESULTS:

  • 50% higher recall if same enviro.
  • learn and recall both land higher mean of 13.5 than u.water 11.4
  • 8.6 mean land learn, u.water recall
  • 8.4 mean u.water learn, land recall

CONCLUSION:

  • natural enviro. can act as contextual cue for recall
  • prove encoding specificity principle

 

 

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Detail study_Godden&Baddley_Context forgetting

GENERALISABILITY:

  • low - 18 divers - too small group- ethnocentric- same Uni club
  • high - cue dependent forgeetting most common regardless of age, gender, etc

RELIABILITY:

  • lack of procedure control - equipment failure
  • inconssistent diving location - weather conditions
  • possible p. cheating - reasearcher not see u.water during learn and recall
  • consistent findings Abernathy (1949)

APPLICATION:

  • educational enviro. - more lessons where exam take place- aid recall
  • eye witness testimony - witness back crime scene - cue more memories 

 

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Detail study_Godden&Baddley_Context forgetting

VALIDITY:

  • high ecological - realistic open water enviro. divers used to
  • low ecological - artificial task - word lists

ETHICS:

  • protection - 20ft deep - risk - but experienced so reduced risk
  • limited informed concsent + deception - otherwise demand characteristics
  • right to withdraw - difficult u.water
  • confidentiality 

 

 

 

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Detail study_Craik&Tulving_LoP_description

AIM:

  • test LoP theory (Craik & Lockhart) by if words processed different levels affect recognition of word

PROCEDURE:

  • 24 p. read 60 words - mix of structural, phonetic and sematic processing
  • p. must then recall by recognising words from list of 180 (60 original, 120 new)

RESULTS:

  • 17% words recalled structural
  • 36%words recalled phonetic
  • 65% words recalled semantic
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Detail study_Craik&Tulving_LoP_description

CONCLUSION:

  • deeper processing, greater recall
  • semantic highest for recall
  • study supports LoP theory
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Detail study_Craik&Tulving_LoP_evaluation

  • GENERALISABILITY:
  • low + unrepresentive = sample size 24 = small = more males=andocentric=one university=ethnocentric
  • lab experiment = artificial enviro.

RELIABILITY:

  • lab = standardised procedure = high control of extraneous variables = repeatable
  • Hyde & Jenkins research supports = reliable
  • Moris study contradicts = phonetic best recalled

APPLICATION:

  • revision - rehersal not enough - meaningful to remember
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Detail study_Craik&Tulving_LoP_evaluation

VALIDITY:

  • low ecological = lab = artificial task = word list = short time

ETHICS:

  • no informed consent + deception = not told remember words till after= so not conciously recall words so accurate reflection of processing influence memory

 

 

 

 

 

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Key Issue_ Is eye witness testimony reliable?

What is EWT?

  • recalled memory of witness of crime or incident
  • give statement, pick from line up or testify in court 
  • argue unreliable that not be basis of criminal convictions (e.g. Beth Rutherford)
  • argue jurors more likely to rely on EWT than scientific proof / forensic evidence

Why EWT important when there is forensics / why issue?

  • possibility of miscarriages of justice if EWT inaccurate or wrong
  • EWT can be unreliable if only basis
  • e.g. Ron Cotton 

 

 

 

 

 

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Key Issue_Is eye witness testimony reliable?

Explain key issue with concepts and theories.

LoP 

  •  reliable  - know they witness crime -process semantically- remember better 
  • unreliable - too many questions on looks (structural) - least remembered

Multi store model

  • reliable - rehearsed - witnesses talk and think about it - push from STM to LTM - increase recall
  • unreliable - if not rehearsed - stay STM for 18to 30 secs then forgotten

Cue dependent

  • reliable - witness back to or at scene - more cues for more memory recall - police reconstructions
  • unreliable - witness recall police station or court - different surroundings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Key Issue_Is eyewitness testimony reliable?

Trace decay

  • reliable - witness interview asap - witness talk and think about it - strengthen trace as rehearse
  • unreliable - not rehearsed - memory trace decays and weakens

Loftus and Palmer

  •  influence of leading questions make EWT unreliable
  • distortion by verbal label

Loftus

  • weapons focus - narrow attention and memory of event - unreliable of offender recall, etc
  • core vision - weapon
  • peripheryvision - offender, surroundings - lack detail
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