Explanations For Forgetting: Interference (Evaluation (STRENGTH - evidence…
Explanations For Forgetting: Interference
STRENGTH - evidence consistently show interference in memory
Many lab experiments carried out into interference of memory.
Most studies show both types are very likely causes of forgetting in LTM.
Lab experiments control extraneous variables
LIMITATION - use of artificial materials
Stimulus materials, often word lists
More realistic than consonant syllables
Quite different from things we remember in everyday life.
Makes interference more likely in the lab
Not likely cause of everyday forgetting
STRENGTH - real life studies
Baddeley and Hitch rugby players study
Asked players to recall names of teams played that season
Accurate recall not how long since game took place - number of games in the meantime
Shows it does apply to some everyday situations
LIMITATION - time allowed between learning
Time periods between learning lists of words and recall is short in lab studies
Doesn't reflect how we learn in real life
Conclusions from research may not be generalised outside lab
Role of inference may be exaggerated.
Effects of Similarity Study
Participants asked to learn list of words with 100% accuracy
Ppts then given new list of words - varied in degree of similarity
Synonyms, antonyms, unlrealted, nonsense syllables, 3-digit numbers, no new list.
Performance depended on nature of second list
Most similar 2nd list (synonyms) produced worst recall
Ppts with very different lists e.g. digits - mean number of items recalled increased.
Shows interference is strongest when memories are similar
Likely similarities blocked access or became confused with old material