General Cognition
Schema Studies
Schema and its Theory
Biology and Memory

What is the definition of psychology?

The scientific study of behaviour and mental processes.


What was the name of Bartlett's research?

War of the Ghosts


What do MSM and WMM stand for?

Multi-Store Model and Working Memory Model


Define schema.

A schema is a set of mental representations, or ideas in our minds, that affect the way we perceive new information from the world. It's a cognitive framework.


What were the two areas of the brain affected in HM?

Temporal lobe and hippocampi


What is another name for cognition?

Mental Processes


Bartlett described memory as an active...(two words)

reconstructive process


For stimuli to enter sensory memory it must be...

attended to.


What is a term used to describe the process of fitting memories into existing schemas?



What are the major areas of the brain involved in memory encoding, storage, retrieval?

the cerebral cortices, frontal lobes, temporal lobes, hippocampi, amygdalae


What are three examples of cognitive processes?

Memory, Language, Problem-solving, Perception of sensory information, Thinking


What does Bransford and Johnson's study show about schemas?

That they can be activated to increase information processing efficiency (and that schema activation before processing information is more effective than activation after information is received).


What is one strength and one limitation of the MSM?

S = supported by evidence, first theory, promoted other models 

L = Too simplistic, doesn't focus on processing, linnear, unitary 


What are 3 TEACUP Evaluation points you can make about schema theory?



What was the difference in the hippocampi of the taxi drivers compared to the normal controls in Maguire's study?

The posterior hippocampi was larger in the taxi drivers compared to the normal controls who had larger anterior hippocampi. 


Is emotion a cognitive process according to the IB?



What does Brewer & Treyen's study show about schemas?

That the details they include (e.g. what should be included in an office) can influence our later recall of events and situations to fit with our schema. 


What is the purpose of the episodic buffer?

The episodic buffer is the third member of the three subsystems of the WMM and integrates the other functions of the phonological loop (information heard) and visio-spatial sketchpad (information seen) with a sense of time, so that things occur in a continuing sequence, like a story from a book or movie. 

This theory is used to explain why memories can be experienced as a coordinated sequence of events rather than as discrete segments.


What are four functions of schemas?

Increasing information processing efficiency 

Helping us organise and categorise knowledge and information in our minds 

Allowing us to make generalisations and predictions about people, events and objects. 

Allowing easier and faster decision making, especially in ambiguous situations. 

Saving our cognitive energy


What did Cahill and Macguah find in their study on Flashbulb Memory?

That there may be a biological basis for it. Specifically, amygdala activation is higher when recalling memories thought to be FBM than other episodic memories. When we block amygdala activation during emotional memories, they are not remembered as well. 


What is one way in which mental processes can influence our behaviour?

Schemas - script schemas guide our behaviour in certain situations; schemas can also influence memory.


What were the 3 ways that participants modified the 'War of the Ghosts' story in Bartlett's study?

Assimilation: The story became more consistent with the participants’ own cultural expectations - that is, details were unconsciously changed to fit the norms of British culture. 

Leveling: The story also became shorter with each retelling as participants omitted information which was seen as not important. 

Sharpening: Participants also tended to change the order of the story in order to make sense of it using terms more familiar to the culture of the participants. They also added detail and/or emotions.


What studies can you use to support the MSM?

HM, Glanzer and Cunitz


What are two limitations of schema theory?

The theory doesn't explain how schemas are acquired in the first place. 

Experimental research can't show their existence, only their influence on behaviour. 

It's difficult to find biological supporting evidence.

Too Vague to be useful (Cohen) 


What are 3 Evaluative Points you could make about FBM Theory?

Answers Vary 

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