Key Terms: Cognitive Psychology
- Cognition: The process of thinking or mentally processing information such as concepts, language, and images.
- Automatic processing: The unconscious processing of incidental or well-learned information.
- Effortful processing: Active processing of information that requires sustained effort.
- Shallow processing: Processing information based on its surface characteristics.
- Deep processing: Processing information with respect to its meaning.
- Attention: The brain’s ability to focus on stimuli.
- Focused attention: The ability to concentrate on a single target stimulus.
- Divided attention: The ability to focus on two or more stimuli simultaneously; colloquially known as multitasking.
- Memory: Learning that has persisted over time and information that has been stored and can be retrieved.
- Encoding: The process of putting new information into memory.
- Acoustic codes: The encoding of information as sequences of sounds.
- Visual codes: The encoding of information as pictures.
- Semantic codes: The encoding of information with respect to its meaning.
- Imagery: A set of mental pictures that serves as an aid to effortful processing.
- Self-reference effect: The tendency to recall information best when it is put into a personal context.
- Maintenance rehearsal: Repetition of a piece of information to keep it within your active short-term memory.
- Mnemonic: A memory aid, especially a technique that uses imagery and organizational devices.
- Method of loci: A mnemonic technique that works by placing an image of each item to be remembered at particular points along an imaginary journey through a location.
- Spacing effect: The tendency for distributed study to result in better, longer-term retention than other methods.
- Recency effect: Enhanced memory of items at the end of a list.
- Primacy effect: Enhanced memory of items at the start of a list.
- Serial position effect: The tendency to most effectively recall the first and last several items in a list.
- Chunking: A memory trick that involves taking individual elements of a large list and grouping them together into elements with related meaning.
- Sensory memory: The stage of memory that holds an exact copy of incoming information for just a few seconds.
- Iconic memory: Visual sensory memory.
- Echoic memory: Auditory sensory memory.
- Short-term memory: The memory system that holds small amounts of information for brief periods of time.