<h2>Learning Content</h2>

This cognitive model of learning was developed out of an interest in a “computer model” of thinking: input and output! As with most theories, the central ideas have been tweaked and perfected many times by hundreds of researchers. The essential components remain the same: Sensory Register is at the beginning and this mechanism is totally dependent on the environment around the learner. Learners collect lots of sensory information from their surroundings. Right now, be conscious of your environment. Are there bright colors around you, music playing, cool or warm temperatures, or a comfy chair to sit on? All the sensory aspects of your environment spend little time in your mind. They are lost unless you pay attention to something, which the next step in the model. Once you attend to something, your mind interprets what you are experiencing.

Perception, the next step, may be shared or unique depending on your previous experiences. I watch a lot of world news and I still have to stop myself when I hear “football.” I have to remember that the announcers are probably talking about soccer. The ways that we make sense of ambiguous situations is clearly dependent on the way we decode the information.

Next stop is short term memory (STM). Researchers have discovered that the capacity of STM is five to nine discrete bits of information and that we hold on to it for fewer than twenty seconds! The big “unless” is that we can engage in grouping, categorizing, or creating stories and images that help to extend this memory so that we can hold five to nine categories, etc.

Once an item is in STM, it is encoded into the long term memory (LTM). Of course, when you want to recall that information you turn to retrieval mechanisms. Many researchers discuss whether LTM is limitless. It is unknown. Scientists who study the brain may argue the information is all there, however, others indicate if you cannot pull it out of storage, it is as good as lost. The final component of this model is metacognition, which means thinking about thinking! You probably use metacognitive strategies all the time when you study, listen to lectures, or watch a film. To recall accurately or to remember some important appointment or moment, humans turn to techniques to help that recall. We think or consider how we will memorize.

<h2>Required Readings</h2>

Short Term Memory Capacity<span class="external_link_icon" role="presentation"></span>

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Information Processing<span class="external_link_icon" role="presentation"></span>

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Mnemonics<span class="external_link_icon" role="presentation"></span>


Analyze your own memory through the lens of the Information Processing Model. Describe how you take in information in your environment and remember it. Cite at least three references from the reading material and cover at least two particular aspects or components of the theory.  

Your analysis can take the format of a paper, video, or podcast. Any format should include references to the reading material and a professional tone.

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