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How do long term memory and working memory differ?

Working memory:
limited capacity
limited duration
little variation between people's working memory

Long term memory:
vast capacity
spans many years
lots of individual differences


What are the two types of long term memory?



What are the types of declarative memory?

Semantic - knowledge and facts about the world
Episodic - memory for events and experiences we have been involved in

Medial and lateral temporal lobe


What are the types of non-declarative memory?

Procedural memory - how to do things, striatum
Priming - prior exposure to something means it is later more easily activated, cortex
Associative learning - responses to 2 stimuli being paired, amygdala and cerebellum
Non-associative learning - reflex responses


What is declarative memory>

Long term memory for facts and events that can be measured and verbalised
conscious recollection
impaired in amnesia


What is non declarative memory?

Typically observed using indirect measures of effects on performance
no conscious recollection
preserved in amnesia


What is episodic memory?

storage and retrieval of specific events
linked to a specific place and time
associated with conscious recollection
autonoetic - associated with self-knowing
recently evolved, late developing and early deteriorating


What is semantic memory?

general knowledge of:
word meanings
lacks connection to a particular time or place
Noetic - associated with knowing awareness


Is there a dissociation of semantic and episodic memory?

There is strong neuro psychological evidence that there are distinct systems

medial temporal lobe damage patient - impaired episodic memory and intact semantic memory

semantic dementia patient (neocortex) - intact episodic memory but impaired semantic


Evidence that episodic and semantic memory depend on one another

Semantic knowledge can facilitate episodic memory performance
Participants ability to identify previously presented food prices was better when prices were consistent with semantic knowledge (real world knowledge)
MTL patients with intact semantic knowledge showed same patients as healthy controls, MTL patients with impaired semantic price knowledge shown no benefit of consistent semantic prices
Impaired episodic memory impacts acquisition of new semantic memories - acquisition of new semantic knowledge in MTL patients is impaired or much slower


Theories that episodic and semantic memory depend on one another

Episodic memory is embedded in semantic memory - however, episodic memory influences semantic memory

semantic memories are abstracted from episodic memory when contextual information is lost

episodic memories are semantic memories which are bonded to contextual information

constructive episodic simulation hypothesis - episodic memories can be combined constructively and flexibly to image future scenarios, drawing on semantic knowledge


What is the constructive episodic simulation hypothesis?

episodic memories can be combined constructively and flexibly to image future scenarios, drawing on semantic knowledge


Remember/know task - what does remember refer too?

remembering contextual details about a memory
slower and more attention demanding
lost over time
episodic memory


Remember/know task - what does know refer too?

a sense of knowing something without being able to remember the context
fast and automatic
endures over time
semantic memory


What is the remember to know shift?

Students were given remember/know task based on selection of exam questions, immediately following exam, after 5 weeks and after 3 years

Remember (episodic) responses declined over 3 years but know (semantic) responses remained constant - consistent with theories that view semantic memory as an abstraction of episodic memory where contextual details are lost


Semantic memory - network model

semantic knowledge is underpinned by a set of nodes, each representing a specific feature or concept, which are all connected to one another. Nodes that related in some way, such as often coincident in time, are more strongly connected


Semantic memory - spreading activation model

Collins and Loftus - closely related concepts are connected, activating a concept will lead to activation of closely related concepts - explains the typicality effect


What is procedural memory?

habits and skill learning:
motor skill learning
sequence learning
mirror tracing
perceptual skill learning
mirror reading
probabilistic classification learning
artificial grammar learning


Types of priming

Repetition priming
Perceptual priming
Conceptual priming


What is repetition priming?

Prior exposure to stimuli will facilitate retrieval of those stimuli and influence performance on an indirect measure


What is perceptual priming?

Priming in tasks requiring the processing of surface or perceptual information


What is conceptual priming?

Priming in tasks requiring the processing of semantic information


Perceptual implicit memory tasks

Word fragment completion - given some letters and have to work out the rest

Word-stem completion
Anagram solution

Word identification - identify rapidly presented words, repetition priming facilitates identification

Lexical decision task - ppts must decide if a stimulus is a word or no word, shorter reaction times with more familiar words, repetition priming reduced pots reaction times to less familiar words


Conceptual implicit memory tasks

Word association - given a word and asked to give a word associated, ppts more likely to suggest previously seen words from word pairs

Category instance - given a category and asked to give an example, more like to give previously seen examples

General knowledge questions


Priming and amnesia

Amnesic patients with impaired explicit memory performance have performed well on implicit tests: impaired free recall, cued recall and recognition but good at stem completion

Found no difference between conceptual and perceptual implicit memory performance in patients with impaired explicit memory

However, some researchers found impaired word assocition



Much of the research has focused on memory structures and brain locations as opposed to the processes

Memory processes are not clearly defined to allow falsifiable predictions

There is a lack of agreement on long term memory systems and sub-systems