Outline and Evaluate the Model of Working Memory

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The working memory model was proposed by Baddeley and Hitch in 1974 to replace the multi-store model as it was too simplistic and did not explain how memories are transferred into the long term memory without repetition. The working memory model, in addition to temporarily storing and repeating information, focuses on short term memory and proposes a multi-component as opposed to a unitary system. The term 'working memory' refers to the part of the memory that is active or working, such as collecting data to be stored. The working memory model is made of four areas; the central executive, phonological loop, visuo-spatial sketchpad, and the episodic buffer. The central executive controls attention, and is involved in planning and synthesizing information from the other two 'slave systems'. The central executive can also process information from any modality. Also, the central executive has a limited capacity, making it a “finite mental work space” as it's unable to accomplish too many processes at once. This idea is supported by the dual task experiment, where participants were given two tasks to accomplish simultaneously. The first task used the central executive in the form of a simple sentence verification task. The second process involved the central executive and the phonological loop, requiring participants to repeat a specific word whilst simultaneously working out the sentence verification task. The third process, involved participants saying random numbers whilst simultaneously completing the sentence verification task. Baddeley, (1974). Hitch and Baddeley discovered that the time taken on the third task was significantly longer than the other tasks. They also discovered that when different components were used, such as in process 2, the performance was not affected. As this data supports the model of the working memory, I would argue that it

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