Like this study set? Create a free account to save it.

Sign up for an account

Already have a Quizlet account? .

Create an account

information processing theory

an approach to the study of mental structures and processes that uses the computer as a model for human thinking


process of transforming information into a form that can be stored in memory


the process of keeping or maintaining information in memory


a physiological change in the brain that allows encoded information to be stored in memory


the process of bringing to mind information that has been stored in memory


the process of encoding, storage, consolidation, and retrieval of information

sensory information

the memory system that holds information from the senses for a period of time ranking from only a fraction of a second to about 2 seconds

short term memory (STM)

the memory system that codes information according to sound and holds about seven (from five to nine) items for less than 30 seconds without a rehearsal; also called working memory


the event that occurs when short-term memory is filled to capacity and each new, incoming item pushes out an existing item, which is then forgotten


a memory strategy that involves grouping or organizing bits of information into larger units, which are easier to remember


the act of purposely repeating information to maintain it in short-term memory

working memory

the memory subsystem that we use when we try to understand information, remember it, or use it to solve a problem or communicate with someone

maintenance rehearsal

repeating information in short-term memory until it is no longer needed; may eventually lead to storage of information on long-term memory

elaborative rehearsal

a memory strategy that involves relating new information to something that is already known

long-term memory (LTM)

the memory system with a virtually unlimited capacity that contains vast stores of a person's permanent or relatively permanent memories

declarative memory

the subsystem within long-term memory that stores fact, information, and personal life events that can be brought to mind verbally or in the form of images and then declared or stated; also called explicit memory

episodic memory

the type of declarative memory that records events as they have been subjectively experienced

semantic memory

the type of declarative memory that stores general knowledge, or objective facts and information

nondeclarative memory

the subsystem within long-term memory that stores motor skills, habits, and simple classically conditioned responses; also called implicit memory


the phenomenon by which an earlier encounter with a stimulus (such as a word or a picture) increases the speed or accuracy of naming that stimulus or a related stimulus at a later time


a memory task in which a person must produce required information by searching memory

retrieval cue

any stimulus or bit of information that aids in retrieving particular information from long-term memory


a memory task in which a person must simply identify material as familiar or as having been encountered before

relearning method

a measure of memory in which retention is expressed as the percentage of time saved when material is relearned compared with the time required to learn the material originally

savings score

the percentage of time saved when relearning material compared with the amount of time required for the original learning

serial position effect

the finding that, for information learned in a sequence, recall is better for the beginning and ending items than for the middle items in the sequence

primacy effect

the tendency to recall the first items in a sequence more readily than the middle items

recency effect

the tendency to recall the last items in a sequence more readily than those in the middle

state-dependent memory effect

the tendency to recall information better if on is in the same pharmacological or psychological state as when the information was encoded


an account of an event that has been pieced together from a few highlights, using information that may or may not be accurate


the integrated frameworks of knowledge and assumptions a person has about people, objects, and events, which affect how the person encodes and recalls information

flashbulb memory

an extremely vivid memory of the conditions surrounding one's first hearing the news of a surprising, shocking, or highly emotional event

eidetic imagery

the ability to retain the image of a visual stimulus for several minutes after it has been removed from view and to use this retained image to answer questions about the visual stimulus

infantile amnesia

the relative inability of older children and adults to recall events from the first few years of life

hippocampal region

a part of the limbic system, which includes the hippocampus itself and the underlying cortical areas, involved in the formation of semantic memories

anterograde amnesia

the inability to form long-term memories of events occurring after a brain injury or brain surgery, although memories formed before the trauma are usually intact and short-term memory is unaffected

nonsense syllable

a consonant-vowel-consonant combination that does not spell a word and is used in memory research

encoding failure

a cause of forgetting that occurs when information was never put into long-term memory

decay theory

the oldest theory of forgetting, which holds that memories, if not used, fade with time and ultimately disappear altogether


a cause of forgetting that occurs because information or associations stored either before or after a given memory hinder the ability to remember it

consolidation failure

any disruptions in the consolidation process that prevents a long-term memory from forming

retrograde amnesia

a loss of memory for experiences that occurred shortly before a loss of consciousness

motivated forgetting

forgetting through suppression or repression in order to protect oneself from material that is painful, frightening, or otherwise unpleasant


completely removing unpleasant memories from one's consciousness, so that one is no longer aware that a painful event occurred


a partial or complete loss of memory due to loss of consciousness, brain damage, or some psychological cause

prospective forgetting

nor remembering to carry out some intended action

retrieval failure

not remembering something one is certain of knowing


practicing or studying material beyond the point where it can be repeated once without error

massed practice

learning in one long practice session without rest periods

spaced practice

learning in short practice sessions with rest periods in between

long term potentiation (LTP)

an increase in the efficiency of neural transmission at the synapses that lasts for hours or longer

Please allow access to your computer’s microphone to use Voice Recording.

Having trouble? Click here for help.

We can’t access your microphone!

Click the icon above to update your browser permissions and try again


Reload the page to try again!


Press Cmd-0 to reset your zoom

Press Ctrl-0 to reset your zoom

It looks like your browser might be zoomed in or out. Your browser needs to be zoomed to a normal size to record audio.

Please upgrade Flash or install Chrome
to use Voice Recording.

For more help, see our troubleshooting page.

Your microphone is muted

For help fixing this issue, see this FAQ.

Star this term

You can study starred terms together

Voice Recording