What is…Memory?

Memory is divided into long term and short term. Long term memory stores information for a long period of time and has potentially no limit to capacity. Short-term memory is the storage of information for a short period of time and has a small capacity. Information in short-term memory that is deemed important is retained in long-term memory. Working memory is linked to short term memory as it is system by which the information is retained so that it can be used afterwards.  It has been hypothesized the parietal and temporal lobes of the brain that specialize in perception are also utilized in working memory. (Jonides & Lacey & Nee 2005) This implies that perception and working memory use the same mechanisms in the brain. And that working memory relies heavily on the perception of the information in order for it to enter working memory. Furthermore, within working memory, spatial information and object information have been shown to involve different neural systems in the brain. (Smith 2000) Therefore the storage of spatial and object information into memory follow separate and different processes and individuals have different working memories for spatial information and for object information.


Jonides , J., Lacey, S. C., & Nee , D. E. (2005). Processes of working memory in mind and  brain. Current Directions in Psychological Science14(1), 2-5. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/20182974 .

Smith , E. E. (2000). Neural bases of human working memory. Current Directions in Psychological Science9(2), 45-49. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/20182621


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