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Friday, June 17, 2011

Memory

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Memory is one of the most puzzling parts of the brain. How can our brain store


more information and thoughts than an encyclopedia and weigh less then three pounds?


The brain gives us the ability to act on our own. To think, say, and do things we want to


do all occur because of our brain. The brain controls our movement, our thoughts, and our memory. Memory, the process of storing and retrieving information in the brain, consists of three main types, short-term, long-term, and ancestral all which can be comparred between genders.


Write your Memory research paper


Memory is the process of storing and retrieving information in the brain. It has


three main functions recording, storing, and recalling. One records information in the


brain by permanently putting it into memory for later retrieval. Most people decide what is important to record and what is not. Storing information in the brain is conducted so


information can be retrieved and compacted for later use. Recalling is remembering the


stored information. Memory adapts to people’s needs and is a necessary for our way of


life (Yesavag 1). Memory decides how long to store something depending on the event.


The information it stores is called traces or chunks and is stored in the deep temporal lobe, mid-brain, medial temporal lobe and other various places. Later these traces or chunks are remembered.


There are four types of remembering. Recall, recollection, recognition, and


relearning. Recall is remembering something from the past. Recollection involves


reconstruction of events based on signs that serve as reminders. Recognition is


remembering that refers to the ability to correctly identify previous encountered stimuli as


familar. And relearning is material learned a second time. Relearning is the best evidence


of memory because when something is learned again it is familiar and seems like it was


known before. Relearning is having the information retaught to you a second time.


A type of memory that doesn’t have recall, recollection, recognition, or relearning


is Short-term memory. Short-term memory is memory that is “in use” and “active” and


located in the deep temporal lobe. Short-term memory is the ability to retain a limited


amount of information called chunks for seconds to a minute and to remember it for up to


an hour. Short-term memory has a limited amount of room to store chunks and is best


described and used when dialing a phone number. A user simply reads the number off the


phone book and then dials it. After dialing, the number is lost. Short-term memory is


memory that is “in use,” and does not get transferred to long-term and later stored unless


the person wants it to be and makes it happen. “Without short-term memory, our actions


would be slowed down with traffic jams of information just roaming around” (Fancher


51). For this reason, short-term memory is important to a way of life. The one recall that


short-term memory has is immediate recall. This is the ability to repeat a short series of


words, pictures, sounds, etc. after hearing or seeing them. “Immediate recall is


remembering for only a short time and the information retrieved is never permanently


recorded” (Pinker 115). Sensory memory is another type of short-term memory which


information enters and leaves immediately. Sensory memory is only seconds of memory.


Inoformation enters and leaves immediatly. An example is sight. Once an object is sight, it


is considered Sensory memory, once leaves, it leaves the memory. Short-term Memory is


still being studied by many psychologist and more and more is learned about it each day.


Like Short-term memory, another type of memory is Long-term memory.


Long-term memory is located in the medial temporal lobe and the mid-brain. It is memory


traces that have been transferred from short-term and is permanently recorded. Long-term


memory has two ways of recording, with and without depth of processing. (Lapp 14).


Depth of processing is the mental strategies and processes that are indispensable to the


recording of good memory trace. Long-term memory has an infinite amount of storage,


but the term “use it or lose it” comes into place for long-term memory. When recording


and storing information, sometimes traces get pushed out and temporarily forgotten to


store other traces. This is the case why someone might forget where they put their keys


when they get up and want to get to work. When your memory does get overloaded, it


saturates your mind. In this case, physical activity is the best to solve the problem. It gives


time for information to be compacted. The easiest thing to be recalled is an episodic


memory. An episodic memory is a big event in one’s life. It is easily retrieved after many


years. “The more feelings, the better stored and remember”.(Pinker 11) Loss of


long-term memory is the result of damaged lobes. When someone gets older, they can


better remember events as a kid then events that were a year ago. This is because the older


we get the more damaged our lobes become so information is not stored or recalled as


well. Over all, our long-term memory can store more thoughts, words, and information


then an encyclopedia.


Like short-term and long term-memory, there is ancestral. Ancestral memory is


memory that is like instinct. It’s in our genes and given from our ancestors. It’s built in


memory that controls our inborn gestures and behaviors. An example is a baby knowing


how to suck its thumb and cry when it’s hungry. For adults, it’s the way we greet each


other, give backslaps, hugs and the way we open doors.


Since memory is a puzzling part in the brain, it has been studied over the years.


Cyril Burt did a test between males and females seeing which gender had a better


short-term memory and long-term. After the testing, the results showed that the males had


a better short-term memory. For the test on long-term, the females ended up having a


better one. He only tested fifty males and fifty females. Burt also didn’t take notes on how


he did the experiment. He died in 170.


W.H. is the initials of a man who had brain surgery in the 180’s. He was having


constant seizures that were located in his temporal lobe. To stop the seizures, surgeons


removed his temporal lobe. After the surgery, he couldn’t remember any thing he had


done after it. Often forgetting where he was. But he could remember events that happened


before the surgery. This all happened because the temporal lobe controls short-term


memory. And since its removed he would never have any memories of what happened


after the surgery since he cant transfer any thing to his long-term memory. This surgery


proves that short-term memory is real and is located in the temporal lobe.





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