The Three Stages Of Memory Encoding

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On a day-to-day basis humans are processing different information constantly. Have you ever wondered how this is possible? Have you ever wondered why you are able to obtain new information, store it, and then recall it for later usage? For example, how is it possible that we can study for a test one day, and then the next day we are able to retrieve that very information to use to take and pass a test? Because memory is an important cognitive process it helps us to record the past, so we are able to refer back to it at a later date. If humans didn’t have a memory, we would only be able to understand the present and our past wouldn’t exist. The urge to study how memory works and the concept behind, it has been around for many years. …show more content…

This happens through three stages which include encoding, storage, and retrieval.

Memory Encoding

Before information is able to be stored successfully in our memory, information from our sensory input has to be changed into a form in which our brain is able to comprehend. For example, our perception of something may be different from how it is actually explained, so we have to “encode” it in order to better understand it. There are three main stages where encoding occurs; visual (picture), acoustic (sound), and semantic (meaning) (McLeod, 2007). We go through these three stages often without even realizing it. For example, when we have to remember a series of numbers for something, we may keep referring back to it so we have a mental image of it (visual), we may repeat it to ourselves ( acoustic), and it has to be significant to us otherwise we would have a need to remember it (semantic).

Memory Storage

Storage in the human memory is the second of the three processes. The process of storing information involves filtering out and filing information so our brain does not experience an information overload. The information our brain receives can be stored into our long-term, short-term or sensory memory. Memory storage also involves how long we are able to obtain that information and how much information our brain can actually withhold. According to Miller (1956) most adults are able to store between 5 and

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