Lecture 1 Human Learning & Cognition

Mental states of every kind, — sensations,
feelings, ideas, — which were at one time present
in consciousness and then have disappeared
from it, have not with their disappearance
absolutely ceased to exist. Although the
inwardly-turned look may no longer be able to
find them, nevertheless they have not been
utterly destroyed and annulled, but in a certain
manner they continue to exist, stored up, so to
speak, in the memory. We cannot, of course,
directly observe their present existence, but it is
revealed by the effects which come to our
knowledge with a certainty like that with which
we infer the existence of the stars below the
horizon. These effects are of different kinds.
Psychology 1860 Germany:Introspection
Cognitive Psychology-late in 1950s
1.Aspects of psychological functioning
2.A set of assumptions about the most fruitful way of conceptualizing the mind and its activity;a particular way of thinking and asking questions about mental activity.
-The flaws
  -unconscious besides conscious awareness
  -subjective and unverifiable nature of minds(John B. Watson)-(subjects’+researchers’ biases)
  -1913,"behaviourist revolution"
  -John B. Watson, abandon the investigation of mind,forget about consciousness, focus on behaviour changes
  -understand relationship btw stimuli and responses in order to knowledge sufficient to predict & control behaviour
   =>analyse behaviour in terms of conditional reflexes=>Pavlov’s classical conditioning
Early Memory Researches–associationists’ view(behaviourist approach)
  -occur as conditional reponses,silently & automaically linked together in associative chains=>like pearls on a string
  -learner as passive infomation processor
Associationists’ Approach (black-box approach=>still behaviourist)–Herman Ebbinghaus
  -Tools:nonsense syllables (rather than words!!)
  -TWO learning & memory tasks
    –Serial List Learning (SLL)
    –Paired Associates Learning (PAL)=>stimulus item+response item
  -TWO memory tests/measures
    –the Forgetting Curve-a negatively accelerated decreasing function of time since learning
       *Associative Bonds  Passive Decay
       *Interference=>Proactive Interference vs Retroactive Interference
       ==>1.The existence of proactive & retroactive interference help explain why it takes many more repetition to learn 
               items in the middle of the list than to learn items at the beginning & the end of the list.
            2. Serial Position Curve for Learning (x:serial position; y:# of presentation) reflects combined effects of
               proactive & retroactive interference.
Cognitive Revolution-1950s,learner actively processing information
  -Behaviourist Contribution:insistence on careful measurement & experimentation using verifiable + observable data-the
    words and subjects’ actions
  -Behaviourist Problem:rigid insistence that we must avoid making any inference abt what happened in the mind’s ‘black
   box’ btw stimulus & response
  -Cognitive Revolution
    –Free Recall a list of words=> organised output (e.g. recall by category)=>learner are actively processing information
    –Was built on the methodology of behaviourism but argued that we can use the info got from beha (actions/words)to
       make inferences abt what happens in the mind.We can & should make such inferences.
Analogy btw mind & computer=>Information Processing Approach
  -Donald Broadbent
   –Auditory Selective Attention
      =>the inspiration for Multistore Model (model for memory)
Introduction to Memory  (Connection+ Reconstruction)
1 -STM:in consciousness right now
|                                                  Semantic Memory (SM)
|            Declarative Memory (DM)-{
2-LTM–{                                       Episodic Memory  (EM)
             Procedural Memory (PM)
*STM:what we have in consciousness right now
*LTM:storage repository for things to be remembered permanently
*DM: knowledge or info abt sth
*PM: knowledge abt how to do sth
*SM: info not (or no longer) connected to any particular place & time (e.g. knowledge of Chem or Eng Grammar)
*EM: memo for events in a particular place & at a particular time  (e.g. recollection of graduation day or 1st university
General Findings abt Memory:
-Childhood amnesia: retain very few memo be4 the age of 2 or 3.
-Very small amt of info about each of hundreds or thousands of events experienced
-NO storage of repeated events
Memo is Reconstructing rather than Retrieving the past
-combine bits of info we have stored in episodic memo into a more complete & detailed memo of an event
The Multistore Model (Modal Model)
-A model of Declarative Memo (LTM)
-THREE processes:,Storage,Retrieval
-THREE memory stores-Differ in THREE facets
  =>Encoding Method, Capacity, the Length of time it will hold unrehearsal info
-THREE memory stores
  –Sensory Memory
     =>Encoding: a literal copy
                                      –*visual icon
                                      –*Auditory icon
     =>Length of Time: Very Short
  –Short-term Memory
     =>Encoding:Acoustically encoded

     =>Capacity: Small , 5-9 items
     =>Length of Time: 30-45s
         ***use Maintenance Rehearsal (rote rehearsal) to keep info in STM ( ineffective in registering into LTM by Craik &
  –Long-term Memory
     =>Encoding: Semantically encoded

     =>Capacity: Unlimited
     =>Length of Time: Permanently
         ***use Elaborative Rehearsal to move info from STM to LTM
               =>Hyde & Jenkins (1969):Demonstrated that elaborative rehearsal works even when learning is not intended.
                   –Intentional Learning:be told that there is a test after learning
                   –Incidental Learning:1. rate words on lists as important or unimportant
                                                2. listen & say whether it contains ‘e’
Why Elaborative Rehearsal Works
      =>Creating more Retrieval Cues–any stimulus presented to call up info from LTM



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