How can the way in which we organise our thinking by using mental images, concepts and schemas help us improve our memory?

There are many ways in which we can organise our thoughts to improve our memory and in this assignment I’m going to explore several of these.

The first method we’re going to use is that of mental images.   This way of organising our thoughts has proved very effective over the years for learning many things, including languages.   A very simple example of this a key word technique for remembering the French word for bin which is ‘Poubelle’.   In order to remember this we need to think of English words that sound a little like the parts of the French word.   In this case, imagine a bin which is bell shaped and doesn’t smell very good, in fact smells of pooh!

Michael Raugh and Richard Atkinson developed an experiment building on this technique whereby the gathered a group of participants (who presumably had no previous knowledge of Spanish) and ask them to remember 60 Spanish words.   They taught half of the group the key word technique and the other half used whatever technique they wanted.   The half who had been taught the key word technique scored significantly better, 88% of words were remembered compared to only 28% for the other half.

Another way of improving memory is by the use of Mnemonics, a simple way for improving memory by using a very short poem or a special word.   One such example I have used for around 15 years is to remember the ISO model which is used in networking.   I use the phrase Please Do Not Throw Sausage Pizza Away to represent a list of Physical, Data, Network, Transport, Session, Presentation, Application.

Mnemonics were used as far back as 500BC.   The poet Simonides developed what is known as the method of loci.   This simple technique works by linking mental images of items with a sequence of locations (loci is the latin for places).   If, for example you were trying to remember a shopping list of milk, bread,...