Short-Term and Long-Term Memory Essay

1723 WordsFeb 22, 20157 Pages
Multi-store model of memory The three stages of memory Encoding – Storage – Retrieval Encoding: Put in memory Storage: Maintain in memory Retrieval: Recover from memory Key terms Encoding: Transforming incoming information into a form that can be stored in memory Storage: Holding information in memory until it is needed Retrieval: Locating information in memory and ‘getting it out’ so it can be used Short-term memory American philosopher and psychologist William James suggested that there are two main types of memory store which are: Short-term memory (STM) and Long-term memory (LTM). STM and LTM differ from each other in three main ways. * Capacity: the amount of information the memory store holds * Duration: the length of time the memory store holds information * Coding: the way information is encoded in the memory store. The capacity of STM The digit span technique: Simple but effective way of measuring the capacity of STM. The experimenter reads out lists of digits and asks people to repeat them in the same order as they were presented. By making the lists longer and longer, you can find the point at which STM is ‘full’ and no longer able to take in any more information. Most people remember about 7 numbers; George Miller described the capacity of STM as ‘the magical number seven, plus or minus two’. Chunking: Miller found that the actual amount of information STM can hold can be greatly increased by a process known as chunking. This refers to the grouping of items into larger units or chunks. Miller suggested that no matter how large a chunk is, it takes up only one space in STM, so we can store up to ‘seven plus or minus two’ chunks, regardless of their size. However, later research does not confirm this. Simon found that STM was quite capable of holding 7 or so chunks of information if each chunk was a single word,
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