Psychology - Memory

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  • Created by: ThanyaA
  • Created on: 29-02-16 19:33
Define long term memory (LTM).
Memory for events that happened in the past. LTM has potentially unlimited duration and capacity and tends to be coded semantically.
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Define short term memory (STM).
Memory for immediate events. They have a short duration, limited capacity and tend to be coded acoustically. Disappear unless rehearsed.
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Define capacity.
Measure of how much can be held in memory. Represented in terms of bits of information, such as number of digits.
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Define coding and give examples.
The way information is changed so that it can be stored in memory. Information enters brain via sensees. E.g. Visual, acoustic or semantic
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Define duraion.
A measure of how long a memory lasts before it is no longer available.
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Explain what Miller meant by the magic number 7±2 and what is it used to describe.
The span of immediate memory is about 7 items- more or less. This describes the capacity of STM.
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Compare the duration of STM and LTM.
STM has a very short duration, whereas LTM a more potentially unlimited duration.
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How are STM and LTM coded?
STM is coded acoustically, while LTM is encoded semantically.
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What are the components of the mulit-store model (MSM)?
Sensory Register, Short-term memory and long-term memory.
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Explain what the sensory register does.
Information is held at each of the senses. Has a large capacity but brief duration. Most information ignored .
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How is information from the sensory register transferred to the STM?
When attention is focussed on one of the sensory registers, then data is transferred to the STM.
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Explain what happens in the STM of the MSM.
Info from STMis used for immediate tasks. It has a limited duration, if information isn't rehearsed. If new info enters, then older info disappears, as the STM has a limited capacity.
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What is maintenance rehearsal?
The more the information is rehearsed, the better it is remembered - transferred to LTM.
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Describe the LTM.
It has an unlimited duration and capacity.
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Define retrieval.
The process of when information from the LTM passes back through the STM.
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Define the working memory model (WMM).
An explanation of the memory used when working on a task. Each store is qualitatively different.
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What are the components of the WMM.
Central executive, Phonological loop, Visuo-spatial sketchpad and episodic buffer.
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Explain what the Central Executive does.
Directs attention to particular tasks, determining how the brain's 'resources' are used. It has a limited capacity.
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Explain the phonological loop.
It has a limited capacity and deals with auditory information and preserves the order of info. Subdivided into: phonological store and articulatory process.
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Explain the visuo-spatial sketchpad.
Used when you have to plan a spatial task. Temporarily stored. Subdivided into visual cache (which stores info about visual items) and inner scribe (which deals with spatial relations which stores the arrangement of objects in the visual field).
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Explain the episodic buffer.
Extra storage system with a limiting capacity. Integrates info from other storages and maintains a sense of time sequencing.
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What are the three different types of LTM?
Episodic, Semantic and Procedural.
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Define episodic memory.
Personal memories of events, such as what you did yesterday. Includes contectual details plus an emotional tone.
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Define procedural memory.
Memory for how to do things, e.g. tying shoelaces. Memories are automatic due to repeated practice.
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Define semantic memory.
Shared memories for facts and knowledge. These memories may be concrete, such as knowing ice is made of water.
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What is interference?
An explanation for forgetting in terms of one memory disrupting the ability to recall another.
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Define proactive interference.
When past learning experiences interfere with current attempts to learn something.
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Explain the study showing proactive interference.
When participants have to learn a series of word lists, they do not learn the lists of words encountered later on in the sequence as well as lists of words encountered earlier on.
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Define retroactive interference.
Current attempts to learn something interferes with past learning.
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Explain the study showing retroactive interference.
Participants were given a list of nonsense syllables to learn and asked to recall after a retention interval. Some were given an intervening task between initial learning and recall. Produced PI as later task interfered with what had been learnt.
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What are cues?
Things that serve as reminder. They may meaningfully link to the material to be remembered or may not be meaningfully linked.
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Define retrieval failure.
Occurs due to the absence of cues. An explanation for forgetting based on the idea that the issue relates to being able to retrieve a memory that is there but not accessible.
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What are the 3 descriptions of retrieval failure?
Encoding specificity principle, context-dependent forgetting and state-dependent forgetting.
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Explain the encoding specificity principle.
Memory is most effective if info that was present at encoding is also available at time of retrieval. The closer the cue is to the original item, the more useful it will be.
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Explain context-dependent forgetting.
A change in the context - the setting or sitaution - results in retrieval failure.
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Explain state-dependent forgetting.
A change in a person's physical or psychological state is different to when info is encoded and retrieved.
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Define misleading information.
Supplying information that may lead a witness' memory for a crime to be altered.
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What is a leading question?
A question that, either by its form or content, suggests to the witness what answer is desired or leads him/her to the desired answer.
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Describe the study for leading questions.
45 students were shown 7 films of different traffic accidents. Then were asked the crucial question on how fast the cars were when the hit, but used different verbs to see the effect.
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Define post-event discussion.
A conversation between co-witness or an interviewer and an eyewitness after a crime has taken place which may contaminate a witness' memory for the event.
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Define eyewitness testimony.
Evidence provided in court by a person who witnessed a crime, with a view to identify the perpetrator of the crime.
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Define anxiety.
An unpleasant emotional state that is often accompanied by increased heart rate and rapid breathing.
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How can anxiety have a negative effect on accuracy?
Cognitive tasks are reduced by stress.
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Describe the study on the negative effects of anxiety.
Participants saw a man first run with a greasy pen then with a bloody knife. Due to the weapon focus effect, they found it difficult to notice key features of the person's face.
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Describe how anxiety can have a positive effect on accuracy.
Evolutionary argument suggests it would be adaptive to remember events that are emotionally important. High anxiety leads to better recall.
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What is a cognitive interview?
A police technique for interviewing witnesses to a crime, which encourages them to recreate the original context of the crime in order to increase accessibility of information stored.
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What are the steps to the cognitive interview?
Mental reinstatement of original context, report everything, change order and change perspective.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


Define short term memory (STM).


Memory for immediate events. They have a short duration, limited capacity and tend to be coded acoustically. Disappear unless rehearsed.

Card 3


Define capacity.


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Define coding and give examples.


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Define duraion.


Preview of the front of card 5
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