Module 28 - Module 28: Forgetting, Memory Construction, and...

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Module 28: Forgetting, Memory Construction, and Memory Improvement We should value our ability to forget because memory dismays and frustrates us; we retain junk instead of important things 3 ways our memory fails us: 1. Forgetting: Absent-mindedness – inattention to details produces encoding failure (not paying attention to where we set down keys) Transience – storage decay over time (leave former classmates) Blocking – inaccessibility of stored info (see and recognize old classmate, can almost remember their name, experience retrieval failure—we can’t get it out) 2. Distortion: Misattribution – confusing the source of info (put words in someone’s mouth / remember scene from movie as actual happening) Suggestibility – the lingering effects of misinformation (a leading question—“Did Mr. Jones touch you?”—later becomes a young child’s false memory) Bias – believe-coloured recollections (friend’s current feelings towards bf may colour her recalled initial feelings) 3. Intrusion: Persistence – unwanted memories (haunted by images of sexual assault) Forgetting Encoding failure happens when we fail to encode because the info never enters long-term memory. - age can effect encoding efficiency Storage Decay: forgetting even after encoding well Ebbinghaus’ forgetting curve: the course of forgetting is initially rapid, then levels off with time; indicates that much of what we learn will be quickly forgotten. Retrieval Failure: memories unretrieved (“tip of the tongue”) Interference Proactive (forward-acting) interference: the disruptive effect of prior learning on the recall of new information e.g. learning different lists of words every day, it gets harder and harder to memorize newer lists Retroactive (backward-acting) interference: the disruptive effect of new learning on the recall of old information e.g. remembering names of new students makes it harder for a teacher to
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Module 28 - Module 28: Forgetting, Memory Construction, and...

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