Multi-Store Model


The Multi-Store model differentiates between 3 types of memory stores which deal with different types of information for different lengths of time: the sensory store which has a large capacity and a duration of no more than a couple of seconds, it also separates the sensory stores for all the different senses. The second type of memory store is the short-term memory (STM) which has a capacity of 7 items and 2 chunks of information, the duration is 20-30 seconds long and the encoding is acoustic. The third type of memory store is long term memory (LTM) which has an unlimited capacity and has a duration from a couple of minutes to forever and its encoding is mainly semantic.

The sensory memory is information that is collected from the senses that is then stored briefly in a sensory buffer store, the information remains in the store until we decide whether it's worth processing further. If it is, it will then be transferred into STM. STM is your memory of an event in the present or immediate past, this information is very fragile and will decay rapidly if not rehearsed known as 'maintenance rehearsal' if kept in the STM. Information in STM will be lost if new information enters STM as the new information displaces the original information. LTM is your memory for events in the more distant past, it is anything that is recalled after more than a few minutes (E.G. what you need to know for an exam). The more than information is rehearsed, the better it will be remembered.

There is further evidence to support the MSM that comes from the Brown-Peterson technique that measures the duration of STM. Participants were given consonant trigrams (e.g CPW, NGV) and then asking to count backwards in 3s to prevent rehearsal.


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