Working Model Of Memory - Strengths/Studies

Outline of the working model of memory including Logie's lab experiment.

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Working memory introduction

This is a model of the details of STM, consisting of three components:

1) The CENTRAL EXECUTIVE, a control system for governing what we pay attention to in the environment, and for retrieving information from LTM so we can carry out mental tasks.

2) The PHONOLOGICAL LOOP, a slave system consisting of a temporary store for information we have just heard, called the "PHONOLIGAL STORE" (duration 1-2 seconds), and an "INNER VOICE" that we use for sub-vocal rehearsal and inner speech, called the articulary loop.

3) The VISUO-SPATIAL SKETCHPAD, a slave system consisting of a temporary store for visual information called the "VISUAL CACHE" (duration a few seconds), and a mechanism, the "INNER SCRIBE" for imagining in pictures.

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Logie's lab experiment - Procedure

Participants were given lists of words to remember in order. They had to remember the word lists in one of two different ways:

1) using IMAGES to help remember the words

2) through SUB-VOCAL REHEARSAL (repeating the words silently in their heads).

Then they were dilliberately DISTRACTED, half by IRRELEVANT SPEECH, and half by IRRELEVANT PICTURES OF LINE DRAWINGS on a screen.

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Finding, conclusions, strengths and weaknesses

FINDINGS: People who learned through repeating the words silently were hardly effected by the pictures, but they were badly distracted by the speech: they only did 88% as well as normal.

People who learned through memorising pictures were slightly distracted distracted by speech, but were more distracted by pictures doing only 82% as well as normal.

CONCLUSION: These results support the idea that pictures and sounds are stored in different componants. PICTURES DISRUPT THE SKETCHPAD, SOUNDS DISRUPT THE PHONOLOGICAL LOOP.


WEAKNESS: participants can manipulate results, especially if they can guess what it is about - "PARTICIPANT REACTIVITY".

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