Human Memory As An Information Processing System

Submitted By orrion97
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I. Human Memory as an Information Processing System
a. Memory Encoding: Taking in Information
i. We perceive the world around us through our senses. This information become part of our memory through memory encoding, a process of converting information into a form that can be stored in memory. ii. Encoding take many forms. There is acoustical (coding by sound), visual (coding by forming a mental image), and semantically (coding by meaning; sounds and visuals made into words).
1. Visual coding typically goes away faster than auditory coding making it less proficient for remembering.
b. Memory Storage: Retaining Information in Memory
i. Memory storage is the process of keeping information in memory.
c. Memory Retrieval: Accessing Stored Information
i. Memory retrieval is the process of retrieving and taking into one’s consciousness information stored in memory ii. The ability to retrieve certain memories is dependent on the accessibility of retrieval cues, cues associated with the original learning that facilitate the retrieval memories. iii. Encoding specificity principle-The belief that retrieval will be more fruitful when cues available during the time of recall are similar to those that were there when the information was first encoded. iv. Context-dependent memory effect-The propensity for information to be better recollected in the same context in which it was first learned.
1. Duncan Godden and Alan Baddeley performed an experiment demonstrating this effect. Two swim club teams were tasked with learning a list of words, one team learned them on a beach, while the other learned them submerged in water. Each group was better able to remember the words when they were at the same location where they had originally learned the words
v. State-dependent memory effect-The propensity for information to be better recalled when an individual is in the same psychological or physiological state as when the information was originally learned.
1. Schramke and Bauer demonstrated this effect when they had a group of subjects either rest or exercise after having just learned a list of words. They discovered that recall of these words was better when the subjects were doing that which they had done when having first learned the words (i.e. either resting or excercising).
II. Memory Stages
a. The three-stage model proposes three distinct stages of memory: sensory memory, short-term memory, and long-term memory.
b. Sensory Memory
i. Sensory memory is the storage system that contains memory of sensory stimuli for a short amount of time. ii. Sensory information is frequently stimulates sensory receptors which create impressions on one’s sensory memory for a short amount of time. The sensory register is responsible for containing these sensory memories. The information can last for as long as three to four seconds. iii. Visual stimuli is held for a fraction of a second in our iconic memory which is a sensory store for holding a mental representation of said stimuli.
1. Despite the clarity of the visual images held in iconic memory, psychologist George Sperling showed that more of the iconic image is stored than we are actually able to report. He showed people three rows of letter then asked them to recall what they were (full report technique). They could report only four. This led to him developing the partial-report technique. iv. Eidetic memory is a lingering mental representation of a visual image (commonly referred to as photographic memory)
v. Auditory stimuli is held within our echoic memory, a sensory store for holding mental representation of aforementioned stimuli for a few seconds after it has been heard.
c. Short-Term, or Working, Memory
i. Much of our sensory impressions are moved to our short-term memory (STM). STM is the memory subsystem that enables the retaining and processing of newly obtained information for a maximum of around thirty seconds.
1. In the 1950s, psychologist George Miller conducted multiple studies in