Memory is really important for our lives because it helps us learn new things from existing experience, socialize and communicate with others, and also warn and remind us from dangerous settings.
There are three steps of processing memory. The first step is encoding, which is like typing and entering words on our laptop. For example, we learned “homunculus” in the lecture. In order to remember this word, I repeat it three times and try to remember how to spell it. However, when I am in the exam, I may forget how to write it, but I still know the rough structure of this word, so I may write as “honunculus”. Then, there is storage. This process helps me keep the memory and organize them to keep my brain from chaos. The last step is called retrieval, which can let me recall the right information in the exam. When I review my notes, I can recall what the professor said in the lecture, and then, this helps me rehearsal the information more.
Sensory memory, short-term memory, and long-term memory are the three types of memory. Sensory memory requires our sense to capture information and signals from the physical world, so our brain will store the information for a few seconds. This is a significant step because we need this rapid process to transfer our memories to short-term memory. Therefore, when I review for the next exam, I may go through over my notes and my brain will picture all the concepts and knowledge I read one second before and divided the critical information from the music played in my laptop and the noisy from my roommates.
Then, the short-term memory can store our memories for around 20 seconds. Short-term memory is used in many situations. For example, when I read textbooks, I have to remember the sentence I have finished to connect with the sentences I am reading right now. Otherwise, the reading does not make sense anymore. Working memory is not exactly as same as short-term memory because it relates more other psychological activities, such as I use the knowledge that I have learned in my social science class to apply on psychological concepts.
After the process of short-term memory, essential knowledge of next exam will send to long-term memory, and other things will be forgotten. There are two types of memories in long-term memory: implicit memory and explicit memory. Implicit memory is more at unconsciousness level, such as breathing and walking. However, explicit memory requires more experiences, such as reviewing for my exams. Then, I will need to be able to answer the questions in multiple choice, and retrieve is the process helping us extract the information I want to use for my exams. In order to remember such a long content and concepts from our textbooks, I think the most important thing is that to review and organize my notes and lecture slides every week. Organizing the notes is organize my memory as well which provides an opportunity for me to find the information I may neglect. Rehearsal the concepts and new vocabularies during reading and lecture are very helpful for me since I am not a native speaker, so I have to spend more time on the vocabularies. As I mentioned before, explicit memory is beneficial during reviewing because I can connect the concept and information with my own experience that can reinforce my memory. So, reviewing and organizing my notes will help me do better in the exam since I can retrieve my memory quicker with higher accuracy.
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