Recent research on memory/learning

Mar 06, 2010

Are we over estimating remembering and underestimating learning?

Current research by Nate Kornell, an assistant professor of psychology at Williams College, and Robert A. Bjork of the University of California, Los Angeles address this question and was recently published in the .

In their paper titled 'A Stability Bias in Human Memory: Overestimating and Underestimating Learning,' Kornell and Bjork write: "To manage one's own conditions of learning effectively requires gaining an understanding of the activities and processes that do and do not support learning."

In psychology, experts use the term to talk about how people think about their own cognitive processes - in essence, thinking about thinking.

To probe the way people think about their capacity for remembering, Kornell and Bjork asked people to look at a list of words and predict how well they would be able to remember the words after subsequent periods of study and testing.

Their results led the researchers to the suggestion that people are under confident in their learning abilities and overconfident in their memories. That is, people failed to predict that they would be able to remember more words after studying more - although in reality, they learned far more -- instead basing their predictions on current memory. Kornell and Bjork call this a "stability bias" in .

Explore further: Pre-enlistment mental disorders and suicidality among new US Army soldiers

Provided by Williams College

4.3 /5 (6 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New study examines memory, learning and aging

Aug 20, 2007

Many older people complain about their memory as they age. With almost 35 million adults age 65 or older living in the United States, it is a problem that needs to be addressed.

Recommended for you

Intervention program helps prevent high-school dropouts

3 hours ago

New research findings from a team of prevention scientists at Arizona State University demonstrates that a family-focused intervention program for middle-school Mexican American children leads to fewer drop-out rates and ...

Bilingualism over the lifespan

4 hours ago

It's a scene that plays out every day in Montreal. On the bus, in schools, in the office and at home, conversations weave seamlessly back and forth between French and English, or one of the many other languages represented ...

User comments : 0