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Our Minds, Our Memories: Enhancing Thinking and Learning at All Ages, CourseSmart eTextbook

By Jeanne Ellis Ormrod

Published by Pearson

Published Date: Mar 24, 2011

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Description

 An engaging and conversational book about the basics of human thought and memory processes from a cognitive psychology perspective.

 

While covering the fundamentals of how our brains think, learn, and remember, Our Minds, Our Memories also entertains the reader with a bright tone, engaging exercises, and thought-provoking examples. A textbook that doesn’t look or read like a textbook, this new first edition teaches students and non-students alike about thought and memory from the perspective of cognitive psychology, information processing, and constructivism.

 

Utilizing up-to-date educational psychology research, helpful visuals, and a conversational tone, Our Minds, Our Memories covers common misconceptions about learning and memory, reviews the basic anatomy of the brain and the human memory system, and explains why we forget much of what we experience. The book also helps readers acquire effective learning strategies and study habits for their own lives by exploring the subjects of critical thinking, mnemonics, metacognition, and problem solving. In order to help further their understanding of the material, each chapter includes exercises through which readers can see various aspects of cognition in their own thinking and learning.

Table of Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

Preface                                             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .        

 

1.  WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW (ABOUT KNOWING) CAN HURT YOU:

     COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT THINKING AND MEMORY . . . . . . . . . .         

MISSIONS IMPOSSIBLE AND POSSIBLE: KNOWING YOUR LIMITS   . . . . . . . . .         

We Aren’t Video Cameras or Tape Recorders            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .         

We’re Pattern Detectors and Summarizers                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .         

We’re Also Meaning Makers                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .         

 

2.  BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS OF BRAIN CELLS: THE HARDWARE OF THINKING

     AND LEARNING                                 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

GRAY ANATOMY: NEURONS AND THEIR SYNAPSES              . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

WHITE MATTER ALSO MATTERS: GLIAL CELLS         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

THE BRAIN’S DIVISION OF LABOR (NOT AS MUCH AS YOU MIGHT THINK):

     PARTS OF THE BRAIN AND THEIR SPECIALTIES                                . . . . . .       

And Rather Than Either/Or: The Two Hemispheres of the Brain    . . . . . . . . .       

TOTS AND TEENS ARE STILL A BIT GREEN: HOW THE BRAIN CHANGES

     WITH AGE                                             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Building the Foundation: The Prenatal Period              . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Adapting to the Local Environment: Infancy and Early Childhood      . . . . . . . .       

Fine-Tuning the System: Middle Childhood, Adolescence, and Early Adulthood     

Learning New Tricks as Old Dogs: Middle Age and the Senior Years     . . . . .       

ENHANCING BRAINPOWER                        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

 

3.  WE’RE BUILDERS, NOT SPONGES: LEARNING AS SENSE MAKING          . . .       

SENSING VERSUS SENSE MAKING: SENSATION DOES NOT EQUAL

     PERCEPTION                             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

What You See Isn’t Exactly What You Get: Sense Making in Vision     . . . . . .       

Did You Say What I Think You Said? Sense Making in Audition        . . . . . . . .       

THE WHOLE IS MORE THAN THE SUM OF ITS PARTS: CONSTRUCTING

     KNOWLEDGE                                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

TWO HEADS CAN BE BETTER THAN ONE: KNOWLEDGE CONSTRUCTION

     AS A SOCIAL ENTERPRISE              . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

BASTARD CITIES AND SPACESHIP SKIES: MISCONSTRUCTING

     “KNOWLEDGE”                                  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

MAKING GOOD SENSE                                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

 

4.  WE CAN’T HAVE IT ALL: A SIMPLE MODEL OF THE HUMAN MEMORY SYSTEM 

ADOPTING SOME COMPUTER LINGO: STORAGE, ENCODING, AND

     RETRIEVAL                               . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

VERY SHORT, SHORT, AND LONGER: THREE (POSSIBLY DISTINCT)

     COMPONENTS OF MEMORY            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

JUST FOR A MOMENT: SENSORY MEMORY                                       . . . . . . . . .       

KEEPING THINGS A BIT LONGER: THE IMPORTANCE OF ATTENTION     . . . .       

Big, Bold, Bouncy, and Bizarre: Physical Factors That Capture Our

     Attention                                                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Personal Significance and Passion: Psychological Factors That Sustain Our

     Attention                                                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

A Bottleneck in the System: Attention’s Limited Capacity      . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

WHERE THE ACTION IS: WORKING (SHORT-TERM) MEMORY                . . . . .       

The Head of the Head: The Central Executive                       . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Another (or Maybe the Same) Bottleneck: The Limited Capacity of Working

     Memory                                                               . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Extending the Life of “Short-Term”: Maintenance Rehearsal       . . . . . . . . . . .       

KEEPING THINGS EVEN LONGER: CONNECTING THE NEW WITH THE OLD 67

LONG BUT NOT NECESSARILY FOREVER: LONG-TERM MEMORY        . . . . .       

That Reminds Me . . . : The Interconnectedness of Long-Term Memory    . . .       

A Rose Is a Rose Is a Rose: How Information Is Encoded in Long-Term

     Memory                             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

You Don’t Know Everything You Know: Explicit Versus Implicit Knowledge           

How Long Is “Long”? The Duration of Long-Term Memory                . . . . . . . .       

THE “ACTIVE” MIND: COMPLICATING THE SIMPLE MODEL OF MEMORY      . .       

MAKING THE MOST OF A LIMITED CAPACITY     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

 

5.  MAKING LONG-TERM TRULY LONG-TERM: LONG-TERM MEMORY STORAGE

     PROCESSES                                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

THE LEAST STRATEGIC STRATEGY: REHEARSAL      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

INCREASING THE ODDS THAT YOU KEEP WHAT YOU GET: EFFECTIVE

     STRATEGIES                            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Intentional Sense Making: Meaningful Learning                      . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Tying Things Together: Organization                                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Going Well Beyond: Elaboration                                             . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

A Picture Might Be Worth a Thousand Words: Visual Imagery   . . . . . . . . . . .       

Lighting Mental Fires: Hot Cognition                                       . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

THE RICH GET RICHER: LONG-TERM MEMORY’S SNOWBALL EFFECT    . . .       

MAKING SENSE OF NONSENSE: MNEMONICS             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

The Principal Is My Pal: Verbal Mediation                               . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

Love Is a Suit of Armor: The Keyword Method                       . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

When the “Mites” Go Up, the “Tites” Come Down: Superimposed Meaningful

     Structures                                                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       

SAVING THINGS FOR THE LONG TERM                               . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

6.  NOT ALL ROADS LEAD TO ROME: REMEMBERING AND FORGETTING . . . .     

TRAVELING DOWN MEMORY LANE: HOW WE FIND THINGS IN LONG-TERM

     MEMORY                                               . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Paving Memory Lane: The Value of Automaticity       . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Finding Old Trails Through the Woods: The Tip-of-the-Tongue Phenomenon     

Posting Road Signs: The Importance of Retrieval Cues     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Revisiting Hot Spots: Flashbulb Memories                           . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

REBUILDING OLD MEMORIES: WHY WE SOMETIMES MISREMEMBER    . . . .     

The Power of Suggestion: Effects of After-the-Fact Information     . . . . . . . . .     

Remembering What But Forgetting When or Where: Problems in Source

     Monitoring                                                           . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Re-Remembering: Effects of Prior Recollections      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Remembering” What Never Happened: False Memories               . . . . . . . . .     

HUGE ATTIC, SMALL FLASHLIGHT: WHY WE SOMETIMES FORGET     . . . . . .     

Neglecting to Firm Things Up: Consolidation Problems                  . . . . . . . . .     

Misdirecting the Flashlight: Retrieval Problems                               . . . . . . . . .     

Mixing and Matching: Interference Problems                                    . . . . . . . . .     

Not Going Where It’s Too Hot: Repression of Painful Memories           . . . . . .     

Using It or Losing It: Possible Decay of Memories                           . . . . . . . . .     

Forgetting the Long-Ago Past: Infantile Amnesia                             . . . . . . . . .     

Forgetting to Remember the Future: The Challenge of Prospective Memory       

BECOMING A GOOD REMEMBERER                                   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

7.  THINKING ABOUT THINKING: METACOGNITION                  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

BEING A GOOD SELF-EXECUTIVE: WHAT METACOGNITION INVOLVES   . . . .     

Reading for Learning: Being a Metacognitively Astute Reader          . . . . . . . .     

Ultimately It’s What We Do Inside That Counts: Overt Versus Covert

     Strategies                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO “KNOW” SOMETHING? EPISTEMIC BELIEFS      . . .     

“The Truth Is Out There Somewhere”: Beliefs about the Certainty of

     Knowledge              . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Math Is Numbers, History Is Dates”: Beliefs about the Simplicity of

     Knowledge              . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“If I Hear It Enough Times, It’s Bound to Sink In”: Beliefs about the Origins of

     Knowledge                                    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Father Knows Best”: Criteria for Determining Truth     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Either You Have It or You Don’t”: Beliefs about the Speed of Learning      . . .     

“I Don’t Have Any Math Genes”: Beliefs about the Nature of Learning Ability         

BUT I STUDIED SO HARD! THE ILLUSION OF KNOWING    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

BECOMING A MORE METACOGNITIVE LEARNER        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

8.  COMMON SENSE ISN’T ALWAYS SENSIBLE: REASONING AND CRITICAL

     THINKING                                                                                                                . .     

AVOIDING THE GARDEN PATH: CRITICALLY ANALYZING ARGUMENTS       . . .     

ONE THING LEADS TO ANOTHER: LOGICAL REASONING              . . . . . . . . . .     

If This, Then That: Deductive Reasoning     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Generalizing from Few to Many: Inductive Reasoning     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

DOING THE MATH: QUANTITATIVE REASONING         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

What Are the Odds? Reasoning about Probabilities        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

DIGGING UP THE FACTS: SCIENTIFIC REASONING         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Looking for What You Don’t Want to Find: Seeking Contradictory Evidence        

When Two Wrongs Can Make a Right: Eliminating Alternative Hypotheses         

Taking One Things at a Time: Separating and Controlling Variables      . . . . .     

Did the Butler Really Do It, or Was He Just in the Wrong Place at the Wrong

     Time? Distinguishing Between Causation and Correlation         . . . . . . . . .     

JUMPING TO CONCLUSIONS OR JUMPING OFF A CLIFF? COMMON

     PITFALLS IN REASONING                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Keep It Simple, Stupid” (KISS): Taking Mental Shortcuts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  

“I Knew This Would Happen!”: Confirming Expectations     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 “I Have It on the Best of Authority”: Mistaking Dogma for Fact      . . . . . . . . . .     

“I Know It in My Heart”: Letting Emotion Overrule Logic and Objectivity      . . .     

“It’s Either Black or White”: Thinking Dichotomously           . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

IT’S ATTITUDE AS MUCH AS APTITUDE: ESSENTIAL QUALITIES OF

     CRITICAL THINKERS                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Inquiring Minds Want to Know: Dispositions        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Inquiring Minds Also Evaluate the Evidence: Epistemic Beliefs (Again)      . . .     

MAKING RATIONAL GOOD SENSE          . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

9.  APPLYING THE OLD TO THE NEW: TRANSFER, PROBLEM SOLVING, AND

     CREATIVITY                                       . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

PUTTING KNOWLEDGE TO GOOD USE: THE PROCESS OF TRANSFER  . . .     

Usually It Helps, But Sometimes It Can Hurt: Positive Versus Negative

     Transfer                                                            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

How Far Can You Go? Specific Versus General Transfer         . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“Why Didn’t I Think of That?”: The Importance of Retrieval for Transfer . . . . . . .  

Applying Yourself as Well as Your Knowledge: Expanding the Notion of

     Transfer                                    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER: PROBLEM SOLVING     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

So What’s the Problem Here? Well-Defined Versus Ill-Defined Problems   . .     

Working Memory Provides Only a Small Workbench: Recalling Our Limited

     Capacity                                   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

“As I Was Going to Saint Ives”: How Encoding Affects Problem Solving  . . . .     

Stuck in a Rut: Mental Sets in Problem Solving     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

There Isn’t Always a Prescription for What Ails You: Problem-Solving

     Strategies                         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

THINKING OUTSIDE THE BOX: CREATIVITY      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Great Minds Don’t Always Think Alike: Convergent Versus Divergent Thinking    

Origins of Originality: Characteristics of Creative Thinkers       . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Maybe You Should Sleep on It: Factors That Facilitate Creative Thinking     . .     

PUTTING KNOWLEDGE TO WORK                  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

10. becoming a more intelligent THINKER AND learner: Acquiring

      PRODUCTIVE PERSPECTIVES AND Habits                     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

YOU’RE PROBABLY SMARTER THAN YOU THINK YOU ARE: THE NATURE

OF INTELLIGENCE          . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

It’s Not All in the Numbers: What IQ Tests Do and Don’t Tell Us      . . . . . . . .     

Are We Born Smart or Made Smart? Nature Versus Nurture in Intelligence         

Sharing the Mental Load: Distributed Intelligence                       . . . . . . . . . . . .     

GIVING CREDIT WHERE CREDIT MAY OR MAY NOT BE DUE:

ATTRIBUTIONS                                                           . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Where, How Long, and Who’s in Control? Three Dimensions of Attributions       

Taking Credit, Placing Blame: Our Self-Protective Bias        . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

How We See the Past Affects How We See the Future: Effects of

     Attributions                      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Returning to Intelligence: A Permanent Entity or an Incremental Process?          

Master of the Universe or Victim of Circumstance: Attributional Style       . . . .     

PUTTING YOURSELF IN THE DRIVER’S SEAT: SELF-REGULATION             . . .     

Talking to Yourself Doesn’t Mean You’re Crazy: Self-Regulated Behavior    . .     

Mind Control at Its Best: Self-Regulated Learning            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Positive Spins and Silver Linings: Self-Regulation of Emotions        . . . . . . . .     

Putting Work Before Pleasure and Sometimes Making Work Pleasure:

     Self-Regulation of Motivation                        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

TAKING CHARGE OF LEARNING AND LIFE      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Thinking Smart            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Helping Others Think Smart             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

Teaching Tips             . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

11. ENHANCING MINDS AND MEMORIES: THE BIG PICTURE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

Suggested Readings                      . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

Reader’s Guide: Questions for Discussion                         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

Chapter Endnotes                           . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     

 

References   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    

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