Enhanced by knowledge: Your Memory Manual


Throughout history there have been those who have astounded many with their remarkable memory achievements such as Hideaki Tomoyori of Japan who memorized the first 10,000 figures of pi, the Yogi Shaa of Bombay who could memorize any poem, in any language, after hearing it just once, and Cardinal Mezzofani, who was able to speak over 60 languages, most of them fluently. People such as these were once thought to possess some type of superhuman memory that you could only be born with, but as more is learned about how human memory works, these “superhuman memorizers” may just be experts in the art of recall. Now more than ever, psychologists, neurologists, and educationalists are becoming more aware (through research and testing) of how the human memory functions. If people can familiarize themselves with how the human memory operates and ga
so much for elephants never forget
in a basic understanding of long-standing and newly devised strategies to enhance memorization skills, they can then improve overall learning.

Memory Background and Basic Knowledge

Human memory functions as several parts working together to get to the final stage of recall. Information enters into our minds through sensory memory. Most stimuli that goes through our minds remains unnoticed because it is common. Once something catches your attention, it moves into short-term memory where it is screened to either be disregarded, retained, or transfered to long-term memory. It's because of short-term memory that you can remember the context of a sentence without remembering the exact wording and are able to get to the end of a paragraph without totally forgetting what happened at the beginning. Next with the proper strategies and occurrences the information continues on to long-term memory where it can be held for a day, a week, a month, a year, or even an entire lifetime. Long-term memory links all information using schemas which are vital to the memory system. They are like an outline keeping information organized and easy to find.

Piece of Info
LONG-TERM MEMORY recalled!!!
external image insert_table.gif^ Table demonstrating the path from outside information to being recalled information

Memory Analogy

Memory operates like a library. If a library has thousands of books stored in an unsystematic manner, it would be virtually impossible to locate a specific book. But, if the books are stored systematically, the retrieval of that book becomes simple and quick. If memory is the library and the books in it is the stored information, then the shelves on which the books are sorted are schemas. To get the books organized properly on the shelves, you need some sort of system, this system, when talking about memory, is the methods of transfer. Without these systems the librarians would have a challenging time getting these books sorted. Once they learn how the system is operated, this sorting becomes simple.

Case Study

Giving information meaning has been found a very successful technique for increasing transfer to long-term memory. in 1975, psychologists Craik and TUlving conducted a study to test the memory theory known as the Levels-of-Processing Theory. Their experiment asked subjects to remember words on one of three bases: the visual appearance, the sound, or the meaning of the word. After two presentations of the list, subjects recalled the following percent of the words:
15% of the words taught using visual appearance
29% of the words taught with only the sounds of the word
71% of the words given a definition
This is because it is hard for the mind to associate new information with old if it can't group it with prior knowledge. Once information is given meaning, it can be connected with other words or facts that are known and comprehended.

Biographical Sketches

Hedwig von Restorff: In 1933, conducted a set of memory experiments around isolated and distinctive items, concluding that an isolated item that stands out to you, such as if it we
book written by Dr. Willis that offers strategies to improving children's memory abilities

re colorful, funny, bizarre, funny, or vulgar, is recalled better and easier than more ordinary items. This became known as the Von Restorff Effect.

Dr. Judy Willis: an authority in the field of learning-centered brain research and classroom strategies derived from such research. She is a board-certified neurologist and middle school teacher in Santa Barbara, California. She has put her 15 years as practicing adult and child neurology with her teachers education training and years of classroom experience to write multiple books and educational journals.

Glossary of Terms

-Recall: the act of retrieving information from memory with no type of assistance
-Recognition: recognizing a piece of information
-Sensory Memory: information's first stop on the path of recall; it hold s onto information taken in through the sense organs. It has a large capacity but an extremely brief duration
-Short-term Memory: (also known as working memory) it screens all incoming information. It has a small capacity and a moderate duration. The duration depends on what is done to retain the information
- Chunking: a method of maximizing short-term memory's capacity; take for example the numbers 7985342343 instead remember the numbers in groups, 798-534-2343 and it becomes easier to remember
-Rehearsal (when talking about memory): ways to keep information in memory
-Maintenance Rehearsal: involves repeating information. Repetition keeps the information fresh in short-term memory and allows for a lengthened duration
-Elaborative Rehearsal: involves connecting the new information to information you already know and is contained in your long-term memory
-Long-term Memory: Has a long duration and an essentially unlimited capacity. It contains a rich network of interconnections relating the various things stored within
-Semantic Memory: (also called declarative memory) the part of long-term memory that contains facts and generalized information that we know such as concepts, principles, or rules and how to use them
-Episodic Memory: the part of long-term memory that contains the memory of our personal experiences
-Procedural Memory: the part of long-term memory that is your memory of how to do things, especially physical tasks such as driving, typing, or riding a bike
-Schema: used for the organization of our long-term memory; like an outline with different concepts and ideas grouped together under larger categories. It assists in the ability to relate new information to things we already know and help in moving information form short to long-term memory
-Von Restorff Effect: referring to the happening of remembering something for it's standing out to you in some way whether that be it being colorful, bizarre, funny, or vulgar
-Dual Encoding Theory: the theory that information is retained inside of long-term memory in two forms: visual and verbal. The theory says that information presented in both forms, rather than just one, will be recalled better because it's as if you are receiving the information twice in one exposure. The Dual Encoding theory can be used as a multiple encoding theory; the more ways of getting the information into memory, the more likely it is that, that information will be recalled
-Levels-of-Processing Theory: the theory that giving meaning to information increases the probability of recall and transfer to long-term memory

Guide to Further Research - Additional Resources

Recommended Research Databases:
- Academic Search Premier
- Psychology & Behavioral Sciences
- Global Issues in Context
Print Sources:
- Hudmon, Andy. Learning and Memory. Chelsea House Publishers, 2006. Print.
- Squire, Larry R, ed. Encyclopedia of Learning and Memory. Vol. 1. Macmillan Publishing Co., 1992. Print. 1 vols.
- Rose, Colin. Accelerated Learning. Dell Publishing Co., Inc., 1987. Print.
Recommended Websites
- http://www.web-us.com/memory/
- http://www.sos.net/~donclark/hrd/learning/memory.html