How do expectations and schemata affect memory

933 WordsFeb 6, 20144 Pages
What are schemas? Schemas are bundles of mental representations that help people to easily interpret and organize information. For example, a children’s schema of a giraffe is an animal that has four legs and a long neck. When the children encounter a giraffe, the physical features fits with his schema of a giraffe, he could then quickly conclude that the animal is giraffe without much thinking. It is useful for people to have schemas as they allow us to process a large amount of incoming information in a relatively short period of time by taking short cuts. The concept of schema was first examined by Sir Frederick Barlett1 (1932). In his classic study, he told a group of American participants a North American Folklore “The War of…show more content…
This respond facilitates the release of glucose, heightens blood pressure and heart rate. In the short-term, these physiological changes are beneficial for the brain. However if this state is maintained for a long period, there will be damage and interference to the brain’s cognitive neurobiological function. Brain tissues that are in charge of memory and executive function can be impaired. O’Mara mentioned in her paper that victims who had been severely tortured had brain-scan images showing that their frontal and temporal lobes with abnormal patterns of activation. These areas are in charge of the recall of verbal memory so these functions are impaired. Stress can facilitate the production of amygdale, this could cause previously experienced negative emotions to sustain and amplify, distorting our memory for the actual event. Stress can also cause heightened cortisol levels. O’Mara’s co-relational study had showed that there is significant relationship between psychosocial stress induced cortisol elevations and memory retrieval. According to this finding, high cortisol levels will have an effect for people forgetting events. When people experience uncertainty, people will depend on their schema to retrieve their memory as discussed above. It is not outrageous to say that we make up our own memories within a paradigm bounded by our schemas. In short, psychosocial stress lead to
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