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Describe and Evaluate the MultiStore Model of Memory

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Introduction

Describe and Evaluate the Multi-Store Model of Memory The multi-store model of memory is based on the assumption that there are three kinds of memory which are sensory memory, short-term memory and long-term memory. Sensory memory is a storage system that holds information in a relatively unprocessed form for fractions of a second after the physical stimulus is no longer available. Short-term memory is a system for storing information for brief periods of time. Long-term memory holds a vast quantity of information that can be stored for long periods of time. Most information is processed through the STM and is rehearsed and then transferred to the LTM. Support for this model comes from research into encoding, capacity and duration. The sensory memory store includes visual sensory memory, acoustic sensory memory and touch, smell and motor information, the information can only last a few seconds unless it is attended to. ...read more.

Middle

The brain damaged patients also supported the importance of verbal rehearsal, it indicates the existence of separate STM and LTM stores. KF, a motorbike victim, suffered damage to the STM but not his LTM. His STM capacity was only about 2 digits normally it is 7 plus or minus 2 digits. His LTM recall of events after the accident was normal. This suggests information can get into LTM even if the STM is damaged. Brain damaged patients also provide evidence against the model which claims that memory is divided into single stores, several ways. KF's STM was clearly more complex than a single store because his visual memory was better than his auditory memory. Research has shown that LTM is also not a single store, as both declarative and procedural knowledge have been identified. This means the MSM is over simplistic. ...read more.

Conclusion

From looking at the MSM in detail, there is a lot more weaknesses than strengths, but the MSM was responsible for inspiring further research that improved and expanded on its original ideas. One strength is that it distinguishes between short-term and long-term stores in terms of capacity, duration and encoding. Another strength is that further evidence for the existence of separate stores comes from the laboratory experiments that have investigated primacy and recency effects. Even though the MSM has stimulated considerate research, it is too simplistic and inflexible to explain the entire memory system, it fails to take account of factors such as the strategies people employ to remember things. Another weakness is that the MSM is criticized for focusing on the structure of the memory system at the expense of adequately explaining the processes involved. The other suggestion that has been criticized is that rehearsal is the only means of transfer from STM into LTM, rehearsal may be important for storing some information in LTM but people acquire new knowledge continually without using conscious rehearsal. ...read more.

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