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Memory Strategies

Page history last edited by fran toomey 13 years, 7 months ago

You will need strategies for LTM, WM, STM.  Fortunately, when you learn and use one type of strategy, it will help all 3 memory spaces.  On this page, we will concentrate on Long Term Memory Strategies.


Long Term Memory General Strategies

1.  To Remember M.O.R.E.

          Meaningful: Memories have to be meaningful to be remembered.

          What   Retrieving makes something meaningful, in general:

               We have some personal connection to it.

               We can see it benefitting us in some way.

               We actually understand it., at least we get the gist or the big ideas.


          Orangized: Memories have to clearly show how the parts relate to whole to be remembered.  Their are two kinds of memories:  Episodic (story based) and Semantic

              (information based--concept and ideas.   Stories have a big idea (plot) and Information text has a big idea (thesis, gist, big idea, essential question)

              Contnet has to be organized so that you can get from one part to the other.

              Memories have  to have at least one address title, name, label) so you can store it and retrieve it from that address.

              Think of a filing cabinet with folders, subfoldes, and pages (which also need to be in some order).  Or an outline.  Or a concept map.  These are hierarchical arrangements:

              The parts are arranged from big to small, abstract to concrete, superordinate to subordinate.


          Represented:  Memories  have to be "represented" (note:  re-presented) in a way that is meaningful and organized for you.

               Threre are two channels for remembering:  visual and phonological (and, of course, a combination of the two)  Memories can basically be represented in a textual

                (written,phonographic, linguistic), visual (graphics, drawings, photos) way,or a Multimedia (visual+textual) way.

               To access a "representation" of a memory, you will need an address, a way to get there.  That means you have to have thought up an

               address when you stored the memory.  This is like giving each folder, subfolder, and page in a wiki a title.


          Elaborated:  We remember better when we Elaborate.  To elaborate means to add, extend, or  to or change something in some way. 

               There are hundreds of ways to elaborate:

               Make comments, ask a question, make a connection to something else, synthesize, analyze, categorize, and on and on. 

               Every time you apply a memory, you elaborate it.  In a sense, every time we think about something, we elaborate it.

               the memory is another way to elaborate it (and remember more)


2.  Intend to Remember it.  At the beginning of instruction or a task, plan to remember it.  Use a cue card or specific strategy to help you do that.


3.  Use it or Lost it.  Any time you use a memory, you strengthen it.   Purpose skills (including the Assignment Template) will help with this).



Here's an example of how M.O.R.E. works.  Read the two selections on the following link (Readings 1) and see which is easier to remember. 


Notice in what ways Meaningfulness, Organization, Representation, and Ealboration affect whether aa selection is memorable.



Did Selection A or B have more M.O.R.E.?     Go to your Personal Page and explain why you chose A or B as more memorable.



After you finish the readings, go to                    

Working Memory:  See Working Memory Strategies Page


Short Term Memory:  See Short Term Memory Strategies Page


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