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FSU PSY 2012 - Memory: Constructing and Reconstructing our Pasts

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Chapter 1

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Definition: the retention of information over timeOur memories are surprisingly good in some situations, and surprisingly bad in othersThe paradox of memoryWord ActivityDid you include the word “sweet”?If so, this is a memory illusionOur brains will often go beyond the available information to make sense of the worldGenerally adaptive, but makes us prone to errorsReconstructive MemoryWhen remembering, we actively reconstruct memories, not passively reproduce themObserver memory vs. field memoryObserver- anytime we remember things from another point of viewField- when you see things from your own perspectiveThree Systems of MemorySensory Memory- brief storage of perceptual information before it is passed to short-term memoryIconic memories:VisualLast for about a secondEchoic memories:AuditoryLast as long as 5-10 secondsShort-Term Memory- memory system that retains information for limited durationsClosely related to working memoryDuration: probably no longer than about 20 secondsLong-Term Memory- relatively enduring retention of information stored regarding our facts, experiences, and skillsCapacity: hugeDuration: from minutes to yearsShort-Term MemoryWe can lose information in our STM due to two different processesDecay- fades over timeInterference- loss of information due to competition of new incoming informationRetroactive interference- learn new information and that new information you gain makes you lose old informationProactive interference- remember info from long term memory but have no space to learn new informationThe span of STM in adults is 7 plus or minus 2 pieces of informationWe can extend our STM span by using chunkingRehearsal, repeating information in STM, extends the duration of itMaintenance rehearsal- is simply repeating the stimuli in the same formElaborative rehearsal- links stimuli to each other in a meaningful wayLevels of ProcessingShallowVisual processingPhonological processingThe way words soundSemantic processingDeepThe more deeply we process information, the better we tend to remember itShort-Term MemoryCapacity is 7-9 stimuliDuration is 20 seconds at mostMistakes are acousticLong-Term MemoryCapacity is virtually unlimitedDuration is decades to permastorePermastore- anything that is permanent that we will never forgetMistakes are semanticPredicting what we rememberPrimacy effect shows up in remembering stimuli that were presented first (Long-Term Memory)Recency effect shows up in remembering stimuli that were presented most recently (Short-Term Memory)Also more likely to remember stimuli that are odd or distinctiveTypes of Long-Term MemoryExplicit (declarative memory)SemanticMemories for factsEpisodicLife memoriesImplicit- memories we can act on that aren’t in our conscious memory ex. Riding a bikeProceduralMemory for how to do thingsPrimingRemembering something because it has been activated in our memory beforeConditioningHabituationNEED INFOOOO!False Memories: When Good Memory Goes BadFlashbulb Memory: emotional memory that is extraordinarily vivid and detailedSource Monitoring: lack of clarity about the origin of a memoryCryptoamnesiaVanilla Ice example: he convinced himself that he never copied other artistsImplanting False MemoriesElizabeth Loftus’ work on suggestive memory techniquesSmashed vs. hit crashed cars, misleading questions and the misinformation effect“Lost in the mall” study and recalling events that never happenedEvent plausibility and Recency can both impact strength of false memoriesExistence proofs show that it is possible to create memories that are impossibleHot air balloon rideBugs Bunny at Disney WorldFrom the Lab to the Real WorldWeak correlation between eyewitness confidence in their testimony and accuracyTo be a good eye witness it helps to have:More timeGood lightingNot under a lot of distressLess accurate when:Observing others of different raceWitness has talked to other witnessesThe observed situation is stressful (ex. Threatening, weapon involved)Suggestibility & Child TestimonyChildren are highly vulnerable to suggestions to recall events that did not happenRepeated questions about a topic make it more likely that they will say it happened“Sam Stone” and the soiled teddy bearFalse Memory ControversyRepressing and then later recovering memories of abuse with memory recovery therapistsResearchers find no evidence to support these claims and say it is due to suggestive techniquesThe Seven Sins of MemorySuggestibilityMisattributionBiasTransiencePersistenceBlockingAbsentmindednessEmotionsMental states or feelings associated with our evaluation of our experiencesSeveral theories on what causes our emotions, but lots of support for which ones we haveDiscrete Emotions TheoryHumans experience a small number of distinct emotions, even if they combine in complex waysProponents assert emotions have biological roots and serve evolutionary functionsAlso state that emotions (limbic system) precede our thoughts about them (cortex)Good support for seven primary emotionsHappiness, disgust, fear, sadness, surprise, anger, and contempt“Pride” may also be a primary emotionThese combine to form secondary emotionsSmilesDuchenne Smile (Real Smile)Eyes smiling with the mouthPan Am Smile (Fake Smile)CriticismsContext is really importantThe surrounding context is important and the theory doesn’t take that into accountPhysiology FearSkin Conductance ResponseNervousness= hand sweatingStartle ReflexArmadillos jump up when startledHumans blinkEmotions ad PhysiologyAble to differentiate some primary emotions physiologicallyHeart rate increases more with negative emotionsDigestive systems slows down with fearNot all are different, thoughHappy and sad look the same in brain scansMultiple brain regions active in all emotionsCognitive Theories of Emotion: Think First, Feel LaterAn undifferentiated state of arousal (the same across all emotions)Two-factor theoryTwo psychological events are required to produce an emotion:An attribution (explanation) of that arousalUnconscious Influences on EmotionMany emotional reactions may be generated automaticallySubliminal exposure to positive or negative cues influences moodsMere exposure effect and liking more familiar stimuliFacial feedback hypothesisMaking changes in your face like your smiling make you feel happierPen in mouth experimentLying and Lie DetectionMemory: Constructing and Reconstructing our Pasts 03/04/2013Definition: the retention of information over timeOur memories are


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