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© West Educational Publishing Information Processing and Memory C HAPTER 8 W e control the information that comes to us from the environment. Physical changes take place in the nerve cells when information is stored long term. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Acquiring Information The Influence of Attention Paying attention means focusing on something. When people pay attention, chemicals that aid in learning are activated in the brain. The following demonstration will illustrate the concept of attention. Pay attention EXIT
© West Educational Publishing You handle quarters every day of your life, but do you pay attention to quarters? George Washington is one side of a quarter, but (without looking) describe what is on the other side of a quarter. Are You Paying Attention? EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Did you describe the back of the quarter accurately? By necessity we become very adept at going through the motions without really paying attention. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Most learning takes place gradually, over a number of trials. The conventional learning curve appears below. Learning Curves EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Both stimulants and depressants affect memory and how material is retained. Some chemicals, such as caffeine, can increase learning. Other chemicals, such as amphetamines, can overstimulate the brain and decrease learning. Emotional Factors Emotional involvement, such as a crisis or the use of humor, can also increase learning. Chemical Influences on Learning EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Transfer of Training Positive Transfer occurs when the learning in one situation carries over to another similar situation (example: flight cockpit simulations). Negative transfer occurs when similarities between two different tasks interfere with new learning (example: changing from an automatic to standard transmission). A B B A Learned first Learned second EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Defined as taking in, analyzing, storing, and retrieving material. Schema An organized and systematic approach to solving problems. Research has shown that the mind creates maps, or schemas, to interpret and organize information. Items that do not fit the schema cause temporary confusion. Information Processing Choices EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Special Learning Processes The Elaboration Process - the method for storing learned material by using a maximum number of associations (the more colorful, the better). When trying to remember “dull” material, associate it with something important in your life. Use old information to help you remember new information. Old = the word DREAM New = the term REM The letters in REM help make up the word DREAM. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Mnemonic Devices - unusual associations that add meaning to the material to be learned. Roy G. Biv = colors of the spectrum (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet) HOMES = Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior (The Great Lakes) Same Darn Lesson = to help remember the definition for state-dependent learning EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Principle Learning is focusing on the basic principle behind the information to be learned. Take details and generate a broad statement. Example: The older you get, the less sleep you need, and the less time you spend in REM. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Chunking is defined as organizing information by combining them into clusters. Try to remember this number: Chunking makes it easier, especially if you are interested in history… EXIT
© West Educational Publishing A friend gave you this list of ingredients for muffins. How might you rearrange the ingredients so you can remember them better? salt, eggs, raisins, wheat flour, honey, milk, margarine, nuts, white flour, baking powder, baking soda See the next slide for one suggestion. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Try dividing (chunking) the ingredients into dry ingredients and liquid (or wet) ingredients. Dry Ingredients salt nuts raisins white flour wheat flour baking soda baking powder Wet or Liquid Ingredients eggs milk honey margarine EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Forgetting can be defined as an increase in the number of errors while trying to remember (or bring back) material. Retaining Information EXIT
© West Educational Publishing One major theory states that most forgetting occurs when there is conflict (interference) between new and old material in the memory system. Example: Old phone number = 555-2678 New Phone number = 555-2768 Interference Theory 555-???? EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Encoding is defined as the physical transfer of information into memory by using mental representations. The process is not well understood, but may be likened to computer code made up of strings of 1s and 0s. Psychologists believe that nerve cells fire in certain sequences, producing what is called “thought.” Mechanisms of Memory EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Two separate theories exist to account for memory: 1. The structure of neuronal synapses change to affect how and in what pattern a synapses will fire. 2. The synapses grow once a pattern of memory is established. Theories of Memory Formation EXIT
© West Educational Publishing A major trauma (blow to the head) or electric shock can block older memories or cause the loss of newer memories. Most material will return unless there is a psychological reason for not wanting the memories to come back. Amnesia Memory loss is selective (routine tasks are generally not lost). Explanations include a loss of blood to vital brain cells and a disruption in the transmission of electrical charges. Note: Another blow to the head WILL NOT bring back lost memories. EXIT
© West Educational Publishing All incoming information (iconic/visual and acoustic/hearing) goes directly to short-term memory where it is processed. It is either “dumped” or moved to long-term memory. Long-term memories become permanent through a process called consolidation. Short-Term Memory and Long-Term Memory EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Photographic memory or eidetic imagery— extremely rare that people have “photographic memory” Eyewitness memory is faulty because in most cases the brain tries to fill in what the eyes miss. Perception is faulty, witnesses speculate and provide details that may or may not have been present. The interviewer can also influence the witness by the way the questions are phrased. Special Issues in Memory EXIT
© West Educational Publishing Summary of Main Topics Covered Acquiring Information Information Processing Retaining Information EXIT
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