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Outline and evaluate the Multi Store Model of memory

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Outline and evaluate the Multi Store Model of memory Atkinson and Shiffrin (1968) proposed the structural model of memory, known as the Multi Store Model. The model is linear meaning the information passes from one store to another in a fixed sequence. This model explained their theory of memory in 3 main separate stores; sensory memory; short term memory and long term memory. The model suggests that in order for information to move from the sensory memory to the STM, we must pay attention to the information, this then must be maintenance rehearsed - this is when the information is repeated multiple times - or elaborative rehearsed - repeated and given a meaning too, this then allows the information to be transferred from the STM to the LTM. The model also included details on how the information in the stores was encoded, for example STM was encoded through visual & auditory information and LTM was encoded through semantic information. ...read more.


Shallice and Warrington (1970) reported the case of K.F. who as a result of an accident had a reduced STM of only one or two digits and a recency effect of only one item - yet his memory of events before the accident was relatively normal. This seems to support the MSM idea that the stores are separate as one, the LTM, can function even though the STM has become damaged. Glanzer and Cunitz's study also shows this two as the first words of their experiment were stored in the LTM through maintenance or elaborative rehearsal and the last words were in the STM due to the recency effect, this is when recall is available because the information is still in the STM and has not yet decayed or been displaced. If the stores were not separate, if the STM was damaged so would the LTM. ...read more.


Many psychologists have criticised the effectiveness of the MSM because it fails to take into account the nature of memory. It treats all information as the same and that the only key for encoding a LTM is repetition. However, this doesn't take in to account that we can't recall information that has been maintenance rehearsed many times, such as knowledge for a test but we can recall information that hasn't been rehearsed at all, for example, a celebrity gossip story. As a result, Craik and Lockhart suggested that some memories are remembered better if they are processed semantically because they are have a deeper. This is why elaborative rehearsal was added to the model because they suggested that there are three levels at which information is processed - structural, phonetic and semantic processing. This can be criticized because information may not be transferred into the LTM just through repetition, it may require elaborative rehearsal which would require the information having a semantic level. ...read more.

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