On the relationship between short- and long-term memory.

Publication: ResearchConference abstract for conference

Abstract

James (1890) divided memory into separate stores; primary and secondary – or short-term and long-term memory. The interaction between the two stores often assumes that information initially is represented in volatile short-term store before entering and consolidating in the more durable long-term memory system (e.g. Atkinson & Shiffrin, 1968). Short-term memory seems to provide a surprising processing bottleneck where only a very limited amount of information can be represented at any given moment (Miller, 1956; Cowan, 2001). A number of studies have investigated the nature of this processing limitation, where some have argued that short-term memory is limited by the number of objects encoded (Luck & Vogel, 1997), and others that it is dependent on the information contained within the stimuli (Alvarez & Cavanagh, 2004). However, in a number of studies we demonstrate that expertise in fact influences the capacity of short-term memory (Sørensen & Kyllingsbæk, 2012; Dall, Watanabe, & Sørensen, 2016), and that complexity in itself does not have a huge impact on short-term memory processing, opposite expertise and familiarity which seem to be the driving factor (Sørensen, Wang, Cai, Chan, & Dall, accepted). Counter to popular beliefs this suggest that long-term memory precedes short-term memory and not vice versa.
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James (1890) divided memory into separate stores; primary and secondary – or short-term and long-term memory. The interaction between the two stores often assumes that information initially is represented in volatile short-term store before entering and consolidating in the more durable long-term memory system (e.g. Atkinson & Shiffrin, 1968). Short-term memory seems to provide a surprising processing bottleneck where only a very limited amount of information can be represented at any given moment (Miller, 1956; Cowan, 2001). A number of studies have investigated the nature of this processing limitation, where some have argued that short-term memory is limited by the number of objects encoded (Luck & Vogel, 1997), and others that it is dependent on the information contained within the stimuli (Alvarez & Cavanagh, 2004). However, in a number of studies we demonstrate that expertise in fact influences the capacity of short-term memory (Sørensen & Kyllingsbæk, 2012; Dall, Watanabe, & Sørensen, 2016), and that complexity in itself does not have a huge impact on short-term memory processing, opposite expertise and familiarity which seem to be the driving factor (Sørensen, Wang, Cai, Chan, & Dall, accepted). Counter to popular beliefs this suggest that long-term memory precedes short-term memory and not vice versa.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2 May 2017
StatePublished - 2 May 2017
EventNeuroscience Day - Århus, Denmark

Conference

ConferenceNeuroscience Day
LocationThe Lakeside Lecture Theatres, bldg. 1250-3, Aarhus University
CountryDenmark
CityÅrhus
Period02/05/201702/05/2017
Internet address

    Keywords

  • Short-term memory, Long-term memory, Expertise

Activities

  • Neuroscience Day

    Activity: Attending an eventConference organisation or participation

ID: 254925369