Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Memory and Forgetting Notes

Memory: A Contribution to Experimental Psychology

Fascinating chart that shows the number of intial perusals and then the time to learn them 24 hours later. 8 to 64 initial perusals cut the time in less than half 24 hours later.

"All sorts of ideas, if left to themselves, are gradually forgotten. This fact is generally known." Is this really true? Do we have some evidence for this?

"There is a clear and definite limit to the accuracy with which we can identify absolutely the magnitude of a unidimensional stimulus variable. I would propose to call this limit the span of absolute judgment, and I maintain that for unidimensional judgments this span is usually somewhere in the neighborhood of seven. We are not completely at the mercy of this limited span, however, because we have a variety of techniques for getting around it and increasing the accuracy of our judgments. The three most important of these devices are (a) to make relative rather than absolute judgments.; or, if that is not possible, (b) to increase the number of dimensions along which the stimuli can differ; or (c) to arrange the task in such a way that we make a sequence of several absolute judgments in a row."

This is interesting: ...the spacing between successive repetitions of the item affects how well the item is remembered.

They key is that there is someone on the other side. I have seen spaced reviews but really they are not as useful until the learner exercises their will to do it.

Retention and pratice: human memory mirrors, the structure that exists in the environment. I take this as if there is something reoccuring in the environment then it will be retained. Retention and practice laws are Power Laws. 80, 20. So there is a small amount of things that occur often that we remember but as occurrence decreases retention also goes way down.

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