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Phenomenon of short-term memory - Essay Example

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Phenomenon of short-term memory

In 2000, Baddeley added a new component to the existing model, known as the episodic buffer, representing the integration of phonological, visual and spatial information in addition to semantic information, musical information, particularly not covered by the traditional 'slave systems'. The simplest understandable form of the multi-component model of working memory, in which a temporary storage system for acoustic or speech-based information is assumed to be present in order to hold these information arranged in a array of spontaneous fading with a duration of 2 to 3 seconds as refreshed by the process of rehearsal. The process of rehearsal is assumed to entail some type of sub-vocal articulation, not only works for maintaining information within the storage system, but also serves the purpose of registering visual stimuli within the storage, given the objects can be named. Hence, if a small sufficient quantity of information is to be provided, it can be maintained for an indefinite period through the method of continuous rehearsal. The subjects, if conducted a study for assessing the mechanism of phonological loop, will be found to recall a series of letters such B, W, Y, K, R, X, while they will be found to experience difficulty in recalling phonologically similar series of letters such as B, C, D, G, P (Conrad & Hull, 1964) due their less phonological distinctive characteristics which, in turn, make them more error prone and vulnerable to forgetting. Evidence for sub-vocal rehearsal system is prevalent by the word length effect as well, whereby a series of long words such as tuberculosis, university, auditorium, paramedical, opportunity is significantly harder to remember than a series of five monosyllabic words (Baddeley, Thomson, & Buchanan, 1975). The process of rehearsal and production of response are supposed to function in real time, longer words take longer time to coherent, providing more time for the memory trace to fade. The effect of word length is profound; however, its construal remains somewhat controversial. Quite evidently, longer words take longer time to recall, leading to more forgetting (Cowan et al., 1992). Evidently, a word length effect takes place when output delay is held invariable, either by the use of a probe practice (Henry, 1991), or by recognition (Baddeley, Chincotta, Stafford & Turk, 2002), signifies that the outcome functions at both the on-going level of rehearsal and through the process of forgetting during responding. Visuo-spatial Sketchpad This component contributes to the functioning of integrating spatial, visual and to some possible extent kinaesthetic information into a cohesive representation that may be momentarily stored and manipulated accordingly. This component is aligned parallel to the understanding of phonological loop, however, harder to analyse under empirical investigation, due to its greater complexity at least quite a significant extent. ...Show more


In the paper “Phenomenon of short-term memory” the author discusses Working Memory (WM) as a very newly adopted phenomenon of short-term memory (STM), a significant theoretical framework within cognitive psychology, used for momentarily storing data.

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