Understanding Memory: Explaining the Psychology of Memory through Movies

Start Date: 07/05/2020

Course Type: Common Course

Course Link: https://www.coursera.org/learn/memory-and-movies

Explore 1600+ online courses from top universities. Join Coursera today to learn data science, programming, business strategy, and more.

About Course

Welcome to Understanding Memory. Someone once said that memory is fascinating because sometimes we forget what we want to remember, sometimes we remember what we want to forget, and sometimes we remember events that never happened or never happened the way we remember them. I want to show you how memory works, why it sometimes fails, and what we can do to enhance it. Based on my recent book – Memory and Movies: What Films Can Teach Us About Memory (MIT Press, 2015) – I will provide an introduction to the scientific study of human memory by focusing on a select group of topics that hold widespread appeal. To facilitate your understanding, I will use clips from numerous films to illustrate different aspects of memory – describing what has been learned about memory in a nontechnical way for people with no prior background in psychology. Many of us love watching movies because they offer an unparalleled opportunity for entertainment, even if entertaining films are not always scientifically accurate. Still, I believe that we can learn a lot about memory from popular films, if we watch them with an educated eye. Welcome once more. I am looking forward to showing you what movies can teach us about memory. John Seamon Professor of Psychology Emeritus Wesleyan University

Course Syllabus

Human memory involves a collection of systems that enable us to remember the past and imagine the future. Films can enhance our understanding of memory by telling us stories about people, illustrating how their present was shaped by their past and how, by watching their stories, we might navigate similar situations in our future.

Deep Learning Specialization on Coursera

Course Introduction

Understanding Memory: Explaining the Psychology of Memory through Movies and Books This class provides an introduction to the most fundamental concepts in psychology behind human memory. We'll cover such topics as how our brains work, how we remember, the basics of object recognition and memory, as well as the science behind the popular movies and books that we all read.Classes of Memory Objects, Places, and People in Memory Attention and Consciousness Memories and Consciousness Understanding Energy: Fossil Fuels and the Future of the Environment This course provides background on energy and fuels and how they affect our lives. It focuses on the key players in the global energy and fuel market: Natural gas, oil, coal, nuclear power, and hydroelectric power. These issues will be studied through videos,-real world examples, and an exploration of how these technologies are actually used in the real world. We will also discuss the science behind renewable energies and how they are impacting the environment. This course is taught by staff at the University of Illinois, John L. Kettl School of Medicine (JLK) and the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, under the direction of faculty from the School of Medicine, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of the University of Illinois. The course is also co-sponsored by the Center for Biological Diversity, Friends of the Earth, Friends of the Earth Action

Course Tag

Psychology Term (Time) Semantics Personal Development

Related Wiki Topic

Article Example
External memory (psychology) For the use of the term 'external memory' in computing instead of psychology, see:
Associative memory (psychology) In psychology, associative memory is defined as the ability to learn and remember the relationship between unrelated items. This would include, for example, remembering the name of someone or the aroma of a particular perfume. This type of memory deals specifically with the relationship between these different objects or concepts. A normal associative memory task involves testing participants on their recall of pairs of unrelated items, such as face-name pairs. Associative memory is a declarative memory structure and episodically based.
Procedural memory Psychologists and Philosophers began writing about memory over a century ago. "Mechanical memory" was first noted in 1804 by Maine de Biran. William James, within his famous book: "The Principles of Psychology" (1890), suggested that there was a difference between memory and habit. Cognitive psychology disregarded the influence of learning on memory systems in its early years, and this greatly limited the research conducted in procedural learning up until the 20th century. The turn of the century brought a clearer understanding of the functions and structures involved in procedural memory acquisition, storage and retrieval processes.
Storage (memory) Memory is the ability of the mind to store and recall information that was previously acquired. Memory is processed through three fundamental processing stages: storage, encoding, and retrieval. Storing refers to the process of placing newly acquired information into memory, which is modified in the brain for easier storage. Encoding this information makes the process of retrieval easier for the brain where it can be recalled and brought into conscious thinking. Modern memory psychology differentiates between the two distinct types of memory storage: short-term memory and long-term memory. In addition, different memory models have suggested variations of existing short- and long-term memory to account for different ways of storing memory.
Unitary theories of memory Because of the multiple loop theory, Working Memory has a more difficult time explaining how short term memory gets consolidated into long term memory, whereas the Unitary Theories generally explain long term memory using the same single principle that they use to explain short term memory. On the other hand, Unitary Theories have more trouble explaining situations where short term memory differs such as the word length effect, which can be more easily explained by the Working Memory model.
Procedural memory Disorders have been important for the understanding of memory systems. The memory abilities and inhibitions of patients suffering from various diseases played a major role in establishing the distinction that long term memory consists of different types of memory, more specifically declarative memory and procedural memory. Furthermore, they have been important for illuminating the structures of the brain that comprise the neural network of procedural memory.
Verbal memory Verbal memory is a term used in cognitive psychology that refers to memory of words and other abstractions involving language.
Implicit memory When used as a tool, the use of a memory is unconscious because the focus is not on the past, but on the present that is being aided by the past memory. Memory can serve as a tool even when one is unable to recall or recognize the influence of the past memory. This distinction between the two functions of memory set the stage for understanding the role of unconscious (or implicit) memory.
Memory Declarative, or explicit, memory is the conscious storage and recollection of data (Graf & Schacter, 1985). Under declarative memory resides semantic and episodic memory. Semantic memory refers to memory that is encoded with specific meaning (Eysenck, 2012), while episodic memory refers to information that is encoded along a spatial and temporal plane (Schacter & Addis, 2007; Szpunar, 2010). Declarative memory is usually the primary process thought of when referencing memory (Eysenck, 2012).
Memory Cognitive neuroscientists consider memory as the retention, reactivation, and reconstruction of the experience-independent internal representation. The term of internal representation implies that such definition of memory contains two components: the expression of memory at the behavioral or conscious level, and the underpinning physical neural changes (Dudai 2007). The latter component is also called engram or memory traces (Semon 1904). Some neuroscientists and psychologists mistakenly equate the concept of engram and memory, broadly conceiving all persisting after-effects of experiences as memory; others argue against this notion that memory does not exist until it is revealed in behavior or thought (Moscovitch 2007).
Exceptional memory Each individual has two types of memory, one is "natural memory" and the other one is "artificial memory". Mnemonic strategy is said to help develop artificial memory through learning and practicing memory techniques.
Memory Often memory is understood as an informational processing system with explicit and implicit functioning that is made up of a sensory processor, short-term (or working) memory, and long-term memory (Baddely, 2007). The sensory processor allows information from the outside world to be sensed in the form of chemical and physical stimuli and attended to with various levels of focus and intent. Working memory serves as an encoding and retrieval processor. Information in the form of stimuli is encoded in accordance with explicit or implicit functions by the working memory processor. The working memory also retrieves information from previously stored material. Finally, the function of long-term memory is to store data through various categorical models or systems (Baddely, 2007).
The Seven Sins of Memory The Seven Sins of Memory: How the Mind Forgets and Remembers is a book (ISBN 0-618-21919-6) by Daniel Schacter, former chair of Harvard University's Psychology Department and a leading memory researcher.
Transsaccadic memory Transsaccadic memory is a relatively new topic of interest in the field of psychology. Conflicting views and theories have spurred several types of experiments intended to explain transsaccadic memory and the neural mechanisms involved.
List of memory biases In psychology "and" cognitive science, a memory bias is a cognitive bias that either enhances or impairs the recall of a memory (either the chances that the memory will be recalled at all, or the amount of time it takes for it to be recalled, or both), or that alters the content of a reported memory. There are many different types of memory biases, including:
Working memory Working memory is a cognitive system with a limited capacity that is responsible for temporarily holding information available for processing. Working memory is important for reasoning and the guidance of decision making and behavior. Working memory is often used synonymously with short-term memory, but some theorists consider the two forms of memory distinct, assuming that working memory allows for the manipulation of stored information, whereas short-term memory only refers to the short-term storage of information. Working memory is a theoretical concept central to cognitive psychology, neuropsychology, and neuroscience.
Memory inhibition In psychology, memory inhibition is the ability "not" to remember irrelevant information. The scientific concept of memory inhibition should not be confused with everyday uses of the word "inhibition." Scientifically speaking, memory inhibition is a type of cognitive inhibition, which is the stopping or overriding of a mental process, in whole or in part, with or without intention.
Semantic memory In order to understand semantic memory disorders, one must first understand how these disorders affect memory. Semantic memory disorders fractionate into two categories. Semantic category specific impairments and modality specific impairments are apparent in disorders of semantic memory. Understanding these types of impairments will give insight into how disorders of semantic memory function.
Memory Models of memory provide abstract representations of how memory is believed to work. Below are several models proposed over the years by various psychologists. Controversy is involved as to whether several memory structures exist.
Genetic memory (psychology) In contrast to the modern view, in the 19th century, biologists considered genetic memory to be a fusion of memory and heredity, and held it to be a Lamarckian mechanism. Ribot in 1881, for example, held that psychological and genetic memory were based upon a common mechanism, and that the former only differed from the latter in that it interacted with consciousness. Hering and Semon developed general theories of memory, the latter inventing the idea of the engram and concomitant processes of "engraphy" and "ecphory". Semon divided memory into genetic memory and central nervous memory.