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Short-term memory

Short-term memory (STM) is a temporary storage system that processes incoming sensory memory; sometimes it is called working memory. Short-term memory takes information from sensory memory and sometimes connects that memory to something already in long-term memory. Short-term memory storage lasts about 20 seconds. George Miller (1956), in his research on the capacity of memory, found that most people can retain about 7 items in STM. Some remember 5, some 9, so he called the capacity of STM 7 plus or minus 2.

Think of short-term memory as the information you have displayed on your computer screen—a document, a spreadsheet, or a web page. Then, information in short-term memory goes to long-term memory (you save it to your hard drive), or it is discarded (you delete a document or close a web browser). This step of rehearsal    , the conscious repetition of information to be remembered, to move STM into long-term memory is called memory consolidation    .

You may find yourself asking, “How much information can our memory handle at once?” To explore the capacity and duration of your short-term memory, have a partner read the strings of random numbers ( [link] ) out loud to you, beginning each string by saying, “Ready?” and ending each by saying, “Recall,” at which point you should try to write down the string of numbers from memory.

A series of numbers includes two rows, with six numbers in each row.  From left to right, the numbers increase from four digits to five, six, seven, eight, and nine digits.  The first row includes “9754,” “68259,” “913825,” “5316842,” “86951372,” and “719384273,” and the second row includes “6419,” “67148,” “648327,” “5963827,” “51739826,” and “163875942.”
Work through this series of numbers using the recall exercise explained above to determine the longest string of digits that you can store.

Note the longest string at which you got the series correct. For most people, this will be close to 7, Miller’s famous 7 plus or minus 2. Recall is somewhat better for random numbers than for random letters (Jacobs, 1887), and also often slightly better for information we hear (acoustic encoding) rather than see (visual encoding) (Anderson, 1969).

Long-term memory

Long-term memory (LTM) is the continuous storage of information. Unlike short-term memory, the storage capacity of LTM has no limits. It encompasses all the things you can remember that happened more than just a few minutes ago to all of the things that you can remember that happened days, weeks, and years ago. In keeping with the computer analogy, the information in your LTM would be like the information you have saved on the hard drive. It isn’t there on your desktop (your short-term memory), but you can pull up this information when you want it, at least most of the time. Not all long-term memories are strong memories. Some memories can only be recalled through prompts. For example, you might easily recall a fact— “What is the capital of the United States?”—or a procedure—“How do you ride a bike?”—but you might struggle to recall the name of the restaurant you had dinner when you were on vacation in France last summer. A prompt, such as that the restaurant was named after its owner, who spoke to you about your shared interest in soccer, may help you recall the name of the restaurant.

Long-term memory is divided into two types: explicit and implicit ( [link] ). Understanding the different types is important because a person’s age or particular types of brain trauma or disorders can leave certain types of LTM intact while having disastrous consequences for other types. Explicit memories are those we consciously try to remember and recall. For example, if you are studying for your chemistry exam, the material you are learning will be part of your explicit memory. (Note: Sometimes, but not always, the terms explicit memory and declarative memory are used interchangeably.)

Questions & Answers

what is general intelligence?
kiya Reply
there is no exact definition for intelligence. but some argues that it's organization of mental ability and how we use this ability in any particular situation..
gokul
what is application of humanistic theory of classroom
Afreen Reply
The humanistic learning theory developed further and harnesses the idea that if students are upset, sad, or distressed, they're less likely to be able to focus on learning. This encourages teachers to create a classroom
Dhwani
state the brief history of psychology
James
The history of psychology as a scholarly study of the mind and behavior dates back to the Ancient Greeks. ... Psychology as a self-conscious field of experimental study began in 1879, in Leipzig Germany, when Wilhelm Wundt founded the first laboratory dedicated exclusively to psychological research
Dhwani
can anyone explain sleep and it's stages?
Shachi Reply
yes
Dhwani
please let me know
Shachi
sleep works in three hour stages. falling asleep rem, waking back up. do you have a spicific question?
Nathaniel
When thinking about getting the sleep you need, it’s normal to focus on how many hours of sleep you get. While sleep duration is undoubtedly important, it’s not the only part of the equation. It’s also critical to think about sleep quality and whether the time spent sleeping is actually restorative
Dhwani
sleep studies have proven that how you aproach your sleep sycle is important. people will constantly concern thwmselves with how much sleep instead of the quality of sleep they are getting. it is better to get 3 houts of sleepless rest then it is to get 6 of strained sleep
Nathaniel
I mean stages of sleep
Shachi
and it's explaination
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
thanks all😊
Shachi
How brain power can be used to control physical things?
Ali Reply
can anyone explain sleep and it's stages?
Shachi
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for disorders of a circadian rhythm?
wazir Reply
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for disorders of circadian rhythm?
wazir
To study Abnormal Psychology means, to study mainly the nature of
Baddo Reply
abnormal psychology? can you explain please?
la
abnormal, this branch of psychology typically deals with behavior in a clinical context.
pakki
yo
Baddo
To study Abnormal Psychology means, to study mainly the nature of 1). Conscious Mind 2). Unconscious Mind 3). Subconscious Mind 4). Normal Mind
pakki
yo
Kylee
abnormal psychology- is the scientific study of Psychological disorders and their treatments
utkarsh
Utkarsh Verma can you help me pass out my exams? tomorrom
Baddo
10 - 11 MCQ test can you all or some help? the only subject I'm weak in is psychology
Baddo
which branch of psychology is the test on?
pakki
How Abnormal Behavior is Defined While it may seem that the definition of “abnormal” indicates a behavior that is considered outside of the human norm, it is actually a much slipperier slope. Therefore, abnormal psychology takes on the task of scientifically studying and classifying human behaviors
Anye
Yo
Monica
What is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm disorders?
wazir
please I wish to find out how difficult/easy it is, for someone with a bachelor degree in philosophy to continue with masters and doctoral in psychology, specifically, I-O psychology.
Anye
do the individuals know that they are being researched on? and why does anyone speak up regarding the matter? is it "don't ask, don't tell" policy?
Stepphun Reply
examine any 5 perceptual principals of organization
kundai Reply
closure, pragnanz, proximity, continuity, similarity, inclusiveness
Shachi
Is it possible for a child to be schizophrenic?
Esther Reply
yes. early onset of schizophrenia starts at 13 to 18. very rare but possible.
Kristel
Good question
Mulder
It's uncommon for children to be diagnosed with schizophrenia.
pakki
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm disorders?
wazir
is there a difference between age and romantic attachment style?
Alysha Reply
I don't think so. Well, not always. Certain things should be timeless.
Know
I'm 48 & he's 26 ...so we shall see?
Tanya
in my opinion if you both are comfortable with each other then definitely age is nothing but a number but then also there will be little difference in the cognition due to age
utkarsh
yes Utkarsh.I agree with you.We call it as generation gap. But there can be exceptions also...
Shailaja
yes generation gap can affect the relationship but this totally depends on the couple that how they settle up with each other
utkarsh
that is true, balance is needed. I spent a long time with an older man and I was more his child than his partner. power struggles are hard in relationships with generational gaps
Ashley
I think all it all depends on your comfort or braveness and attitude toward life, then age is just numbers.
Sujeet
new perspective n ones mindset towards life plays an important role... if the change is for gud.. go-ahead
Smitha
Yes romantic attachment styles change with age if that's what you are asking. here is where you can read more about it ***google.com/amp/s/qz.com/1206940/attachment-style-changes-with-age/amp/
krish
can empirical research be performed on people being diagnosed or people who have borderline personality disorder?
Stepphun Reply
yes it can
Angela
***pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/3711874/
Angela
thank you for the feedback
Stepphun
👍
Angela
yes?
Stepphun
discuss the three models of positional coding in working memory citing examples.Please help me with points to this question
jane Reply
can you clear me up a doubt that for to become a psychriatist what process are needed
Mimi Reply
What are the vocational choices for women in pakistan also discuss its aims and objectives.
Malik Reply
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself.
RAVI Reply
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself. Have you any suggestion for me?
RAVI
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself. Have you any suggestion for me?
RAVI
why do you think they correlate?
James
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm?
wazir
what is Egocentrism
Ishfaq

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Source:  OpenStax, Psychology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 03, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11629/1.5
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