Effects of Rehearsal and Imagery on STM Recall

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Effects of Rehearsal and Imagery on STM Recall

Rehearsal acts as a buffer between memory and Long Term Memory, by maintaining information within the Short Term Memory.  The effects of repeated presentation depend on whether the repeated stimulus is merely processed to the same level, or encoded differently on its further presentations.

The Serial Position Effect is the likelihood of remembering any word, depending on its position in the list.  Better recall of the words early in the list results from Primacy Effect.  They get rehearsed and stored in the Long Term Memory.  Therefore, this proves that rehearsal increases the chance of remembering.  Words towards the end of the list are still in the Short Term Memory so are also easily recalled.

Imagery is different to verbal memory and is defined as the creation of a mental picture.  It helps with the organization of the memory, and the more bizarre the image, the more likely we are to remember it.  Paivio (1971) agreed, proposing that the processing of words and images occurs separately.  Concrete words are encoded twice, once as verbal symbols and again as image-based symbols.  Therefore, this increases the likelihood that they will be remembered.  This is similar to the processing involved with the Working Memory Model, where oral memory is stored in the Primary Acoustic Store, whereas images are collected in the Visuo-Spatial Scratch Pad.  Paivio called this Dual Coding Hypothesis.

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The Mnemonic Keyboard was a concept devised by Pressley in 1982.  It aims to identify part of a foreign word that sounds similar to an English word, and connecting them with a picture.

Haber (1969) came up with the theory of Eidetic Imagers.  Eidetic Imaginers can briefly look at a picture and store it almost perfectly.  Later, they can ‘read off’ the details from the picture without much difficulty.  Such imagers are not quite like photographs, as details are sometimes added, altered and deleted.  There is evidence to suggest that they only occur when picture content is interesting.


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