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48 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Learning and memory represented in the
brain by...
physiological changes at the synapse
Enhanced firing of neurons after repeated stimulation
• Structural changes and enhanced responding
Long‐term potentiation (LTP)
How do neurons produce LTP?
Either more neurotransmitter released from
presynaptic neuron, or more receptors in the postsynaptic
When firing in pre‐synaptic neuron doesn’t lead
to firing in the post‐synaptic neuron, the connection is weakened further
Long‐term depression (LTD)
With ___ plus ___, learning can occur while the overall
rate of neural activity remains approximately
LTP plus LTP
A general term for structural changes in the
brain due to experience
What did Maguire et al.'s study find in their London taxi driver study
More experience as
a taxi driver was
correlated with a
larger right posterior
More experience as
a taxi driver was
correlated with a
smaller right
when a memory is retrieved, it is apparently reformed, and is once again subject
to interference
Describe Nader et al's study on fear conditioning in rats
What were the results?
Learning: day 1 tone then shock
day 2 tone onle
day 3 tone only

Condition 1 rat freezes in response to tone on day 3
Condition 2 rat does not freeze to tone on day 3
condition 3 rat does not freeze to tone on day 3

Condition 1: inject anisomycin after consolidation
Condition 2: Inject anisomycin before consolidation
Condition 3: Inject anisomycin during reactivation
What are the implications of the fear conditioning in rats study?
In Condition 3, memory formation is blocked
when the memory is recalled/reactivated, and
this causes the memory to be forgotten
Describe Hupbach, et al's study on reconsolidation in humans
What were their results?
Day 1 Day 2 Day 3
Group 1 learn List 1 learn List 2 test List 1
Group 2 learn List 1 recall Day 1 test List 1
learn List 2
Simply remembering
Day 1 on Day 2 allowed
List 2 to interfere with
memory for List 1
Memory depends on...
What actually happened
– Person’s knowledge, experiences, and
Describe Bartlett’s (1932) “War of the Ghosts” study
What were the results?
Had participants (British) attempt to remember a folk
story from a different culture (Canadian First
Over time, reproduction became shorter, contained
omissions and inaccuracies
– Changed to make the story more consistent with their
own culture, e.g. “canoes” became “boats”
Process of determining origins of our memories
source memory
Misidentifying source of memory
– Also called “source misattributions”
Source monitoring error
What can the errors in Bartlett’s study be interpreted as?
inability to separate memories from story with
memories from other experiences
Describe Jacoby et al.'s study (1989) “Becoming Famous Overnight” and their results
1) read non-famous names
2) read non famous names from previous plus new non famous names and new famous names and determine which names are famous
3)delayed test

Results: some non famous names were misidentified as being famous
what were the errors the participants made in Jacoby et al.'s study (1989) “Becoming Famous Overnight"?
Failed to identify the source as the list that had been
read the previous day
Based on knowledge gained through experience
Pragmatic inferences
Describe Bransford & Johnson's study on Pragmatic inferences
what were their results?
Experimental group:
– John was trying to fix the birdhouse. He was pounding the
nail when his father came out to watch him and help him
do the work.
• Control group:
– John was trying to fix the birdhouse. He was looking for
the nail when his father came out to watch him and help
him do the work.
• Test for both groups:
– John was using a hammer to fix the birdhouse when his
father came out to watch him and help him do the work.

researcher asked if subjects had seen test sentence before
those in experimental group said they saw test sentence more often
Describe the false memory cog lab study
Presented list of semantically related words:
Bed, rest, awake, tired, dream, blanket, doze…
• Recognition memory test:
– Words on list (rest, tired, dream)
– Unrelated distractors (cake, mountain, cloth)
– Semantically‐related distractors (sleep)
what were the general results of the false memory coglab
related distractors were reported almost as often as words in the list and unrelated distractors were hardly reported
Misleading or suggestive information presented
after a person witnesses an event can change how
that person describes the event later
Misinformation effect
Describe Loftus et al.'s study on the power of suggestion regarding Misleading post‐event information
What were the results?
Step 1. See 30 slides of traffic accident

Step p 2. Answer 20 questions about slide show:
No MPI Group:
“Did another car pass the red Datsun while it was
stopped at the stop sign?”
MPI Group:
“Did another car pass the red Datsun while it was
stopped at the yield sign?”
Step 3. 20‐minute filler activity:
Read an unrelated story and answer questions
about it
Step 4. Forced‐choice recognition test
Which of these pictures was in the slide show?
The no MPI group recalled the correct picture more often than the MPI group (Misleading post‐event information)
Describe Loftus and Palmer's car crash experiment
1. Shown film of a car crash.
2. Asked questions about film:
About how fast were the cars going
when they smashed into each other?
3. One week later, asked:
Did you see any broken glass?
More subjects reported broken glass in the smashed condition
MPI impairs or replaces memories that were formed
during original event
Memory‐trace replacement
More recent learning interferes with memory for
something in the past
– Original memory trace is not replaced
Retroactive interference
Failure to distinguish the source of the information
– MPI is misattributed to the original source
Source monitoring error
describe Hyman et al.'s study on false childhood memories
what were the results
Participants’ parents filled out
questionnaires about
childhood experiences
• Participants repeatedly
interviewed about experiences
– Real experiences from
– False experiences added by
experimenter, e.g.:

during first interview: hardly any false memories recalled
during second interview: about 20% false memories recalled
during 3rd interview: about 25% of false memories recalled
Describe Ross et al.'s study on Errors in Eyewitness Testimony
What were their results?
1)Experimental condition: view video of male teacher reading to students
control condition: view video of female teacher reading to students
3) view film of female teacher getting robbed by a man
4) subjects choose the suspect among a set of photos

when the actual robber was not in photospread more people in the experimental condition identified the male teacher as the robber compared to when the actuao robber was in the photospread
Errors in eyewitness testimony due to:
• Attention
Poor memory due to a gun shot
• Familiarity
Source misattribution
• Suggestion
“Which one of these men did it?”
• Questioning
“Did you see Joe at the Laundromat on Sunday?”
A unit of knowledge.
– A mental representation that picks out a set of
entities, or a category.
A group of related things.
The process by which things are placed into groups
called categories
Determine category membership based on
whether the object meets the definition of
the category
Definitional Approach
Features that any object must have to be a
category member
– Necessary and sufficient conditions
Defining features
Family resemblance
– Things in a category resemble one another in a number of
Prototype approach
An average of category members encountered in the past
– An abstract representation of the “typical” member of a
Features that objects in the category typically have
– The most salient features of the category
– True of most instances of that category
Characteristic features
Describe Rosch 's (1975) “Prototypicality” approach and the results
Rate each category member on how well it
represents the category title
1 = very good category example
high prototypicality
7 = very poor category example
low prototypicality
Some objects are more prototypical of a
category than others, i.e. they more closely
resemble the prototype
Describe Rosch & Mervis '(1975) “Family resemblance” study
What were their results
regarding the question "What makes an object more or less prototypical?"
Task: “For each of the following objects, list as
many characteristics and attributes that you feel
are common to these objects.”
Four legs, barks, fur, chases cats, tail…
Four legs, hooves, fur, eats apples, tail…
Swims in ocean, baleen, blow hole…

Strong positive relationship between
prototypicality and family resemblance
– When items share many features with other items
in the category, the family resemblance of these
items is high, and they are rated more prototypical
– They share characteristic features
Describe Smith et al's study of the . (1974) “Typicality effect”
What were the results
Task: Sentence verification technique
Respond “yes” if the sentence is true, “no” if it is false
More RT for items that were less representative of a prototype e.g. apple vs. pomegranate being a fruit
Describe Mervis et al.'s (1976) “Naming” study and their results
Task: Name as many members of a category as
• Result:
– More prototypical members of a category are named
before less prototypical members
Bird: robin, cardinal, raven, sparrow, seagull, ostrich, penguin
Describe Rosch 's(1975b) “Priming” study and the results
1. Hear a color word
2. Make a same/different judgment about two
colored discs
When participants heard
“green” they brought to mind
the prototype for the color
green. This acted as a better
prime for stimuli that
matched the prototype well.
Concept is represented by multiple examples
(rather than a single prototype)
• Examples are actual category members
(not abstract averages)
• To categorize, compare the new item to stored
exemplars (instead of a constructed prototype)
Exemplar Approach
Actual examples of a category, i.e. category members
How does the exemplar approach explain the typicality effect?
The more similar an object is to known category
members (exemplars), the faster it will be
• The more exemplars an object is similar to, the
faster it will be categorized.
How is the exemplar approach better than the prototype approach?
Exemplar approach is better able to handle highly variable categories
Exemplar approach is better able to handle exceptional cases.