Psychology Definitions

  1. memory
    the mental processes that enable us to retain and use information over time.
  2. encoding
    the process of transforming information into a form that can be entered into and retained by the memory system.
  3. storage
    the process of retaining information in memory so that it can be used at a later time.
  4. retrieval
    the process of recovering information stored in memory so that we are consciously aware of it.
  5. stage model of memory
    a model describing memory as consisting of three distinct stages: sensory memory, short-term memory, and long-term memory.
  6. sensory memory
    the stage of memory that registers information from the environment and holds it for a very brief period of time.
  7. short-term memory
    the active stage of memory in which information is stored up for about 20 seconds.
  8. long-term memory
    the stage of memory that represents the long-term storage of information.
  9. maintenance rehearsal
    the mental or verbal repetition of information in order to maintain it beyond the usual 20-second duration of short-term memory.
  10. chunking
    increasing the amount of information that can be held in short-term memory by grouping related items together into a single unit, or chunk.
  11. working memory
    short-term memory system involved in the temporary storage and active manipulation of information; in Baddeley's model, includes the phonological loop, visuospatial sketchpad, and central executive components.
  12. elaborative rehearsal
    rehearsal that involves focusing on the meaning of information to help encode and transfer it to long-term memory.
  13. procedural memory
    category of long-term memory that includes memories of different skills, operations, and actions
  14. episodic memory
    category of long-term memory that includes memories of particular events
  15. semantic memory
    category of long-term memory that includes memories of general knowledge of facts, names, and concepts.
  16. explicit memory
    information or knowledge that can be consciously recollected; also called declarative memory.
  17. implicit memory
    information or knowledge that affects behavior or task performance but cannot be consciously recollected; also called non-declarative memory.
  18. clustering
    organizing items into related groups during recall from long-term memory.
  19. semantic network model
    a model that describes units of information in long-term memory as being organized in a complex network of associations.
  20. retrieval
    the process of accessing stored information.
  21. retrieval cue
    a clue, prompt, or hint that helps trigger recall of a given piece of information stored in long-term memory.
  22. retrieval cue failure
    the inability to recall long-term memories because of inadequate or missing retrieval cues.
  23. tip-of-the-tongue (TOT) experience
    a memory phenomenon that involves the sensation of knowing that specific information is stored in long-term memory, but being temporarily unable to retrieve it.
  24. recall
    a test of long-term memory that involves retrieving information without the aid of retrieval cues; also called free recall.
  25. cued recall
    a test of long-term memory that involves remembering an item of information in response to a retrieval cue.
  26. recognition
    a test of long-term memory that involves identifying correct information out of several possible choices.
  27. serial position effect
    the tendency to remember items at the beginning and end of a list better than items in the middle.
  28. encoding specificity principle
    the principle that when the conditions of information retrieval are similar to the conditions of information encoding, retrieval is more likely to be successful.
  29. context effect
    the tendency to recover information more easily when the retrieval occurs in the same setting as the original learning of the information.
  30. mood congruence
    an encoding specificity phenomenon in which a given mood tends to evoke memories that are consistent with that mood.
  31. flashbulb memory
    the recall of very specific images or details surrounding a vivid, rare, or significant personal event; details may or may not be accurate.
  32. forgetting
    the inability to recall information that was previously available.
  33. encoding failure
    the inability to recall specific information because of insufficient encoding of the information for storage in long-term memory.
  34. prospective memory
    remembering to do something in the future.
  35. deja vu
    a brief but intense feeling of remembering a scene or an event that is actually being experienced for the first time; French for "already seen."
  36. source memory or source monitoring
    memory for when, where, and how a particular piece of information was acquired.
  37. decay theory
    the view that forgetting is due to normal metabolic processes that occur in the brain over time.
  38. interference theory
    the theory that forgetting is caused by one memory competing with or replacing another.
  39. retroactive interference
    forgetting in which a new memory interferes with remembering an old memory; backward-acting memory interference.
  40. proactive interference
    forgetting in which an old memory interferes with remembering a new memory; forward-acting memory interference.
  41. suppression
    motivated forgetting that occurs consciously.
  42. repression
    motivated forgetting that occurs unconsciously.
  43. misinformation effect
    a memory-distortion phenomenon in which a person's existing memories can be altered if the person is exposed to misleading information.
  44. source confusion
    a memory distortion that occurs when the true source of the memory is forgotten.
  45. false memory
    a distorted or fabricated recollection of something that did not actually occur.
  46. schema
    an organized cluster of information about a particular topic.
  47. script
    a schema for the typical sequence of an everyday event.
  48. imagination inflation
    a memory phenomenon in which vividly imagining an even markedly increases confidence that the event actually occurred.
  49. memory trace
    the brain changes associated with a particular stored memory.
  50. long-term potentiation
    a long-lasting increase in synaptic strength between two neurons.
  51. amnesia
    severe memory loss.
  52. retrograde amnesia
    loss of memory, especially for episodic information; backward-acting amnesia.
  53. memory consolidation
    the gradual, physical process of converting new long-term memories to stable, enduring long-term memory codes.
  54. anterograde amnesia
    loss of memory caused by the inability to store new memories; forward-acting amnesia.
  55. dementia
    progressive deterioration and impairment of memory, reasoning, and the other cognitive functions occurring as the result of a disease or a condition.
  56. Alzheimer's Disease (AD)
    a progressive disease that destroys the brain's neurons, gradually impairing memory, thinking, language, and other cognitive functions, resulting in the complete inability to care for oneself; the most common form of dementia.
Card Set
Psychology Definitions
Chapter 6