-Evaluating the MSM – PY4
Evaluation which supports the MSM comes from the fact there is a great deal of research evidence that suggests memory is made of different stores that work differently.
For example, support comes from evidence from case studies of brain damaged patients, such as Milner’s 1966 report on HM, a man who was left with severe memory impairment after brain surgery. HM could talk normally and recall events that occurred before his surgery, but could not retain any new information and couldn’t lay down any new memories in his LTM. This supports the MSM because it backs up the theory that short term memory and long term memory are separate stores. As HM could recall information before his surgery his long term memory is obviously intact, however, the fact that he could not retain any information after the surgery suggests that there was a problem passing new information from his STM to his LTM.
More evidence comes from another case study on Clive Wearing, a man who contracted a virus that attacked his hippocampus. After the virus Clive was left with a disease called Anterograde Amnesia – a disorder which doesn’t allow him to transfer new memories into his LTM. Every day he ‘wakes up’ after 20 seconds then restarts his memory. The things Clive can remember from his LTM is his wife and how to play piano, although he does not remember his children. This supports the MSM as it shows that there are different stores of memory, as Clive can remember his wife and the ability to play piano it shows that the LTM is a different store the STM.
Some Empirical evidence to support the MSM comes from Murdock. Murdock presented participants with a list of words to be recalled in any particular order and found that the most commonly recalled words were from the beginning and end of the list. This is known as serial position effect meaning that the words at the beginning of the list are recalled due to rehearsal and transferred to the LTM and the words at the...