Starting with Psychology


Course Reference - Y163 10F

Assignment number - TMA01

In this essay we will look at how Mental image, Concept and Schemas help to improve our memory. We will look at each individually showing what is meant by a mental image, concept and schema, how each improves our memory and will show evidence to support this.

Firstly we will look at Mental Image. Mental image is when we make a visual record in our minds of an item, a person an idea or a situation. We have a visual record for every bit of knowledge we know, we may have better mental images for experiences or things that we have enjoyed oppose to things we haven’t. The more effort we put into forming our mental image will make it easier for later recall.

There are a number of techniques using mental image for memory recall mnemonics being one. A type on mnemonics is called the ‘method of loci’ and was developed by Poet Simonides. Poet Simonides believed that the method of loci would help us recall information easier by linking items we know with a sequence of locations we already know.

Another technique is the keyword technique developed by Michael Raugh and Richard Atkinson (1975). This technique has proven successful when learning a new language or even a native language. It works by taking the unknown word and linking it to a familiar word. For example celerity meaning speed; the keyword could then be celery you could then visualise a piece of celery flying around at top speed this would then be the mental cue you need to remember the word and its meaning.(

Raugh and Atkinson carried out an experiment on two groups of participants. Both groups were asked to learn 60 Spanish words, only one group had been taught the keyword technique. When later tested the group which had learnt the keyword technique scored an average of 88% compared to the group who had not learnt the keyword technique who scored an average of 28%. This...