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Discuss the need for an explanation of human memory which proposes that memory is a set of stages rather than a single process This essay is going to discuss the need for an explanation of human memory which proposes that memory is a set of stages rather than a single process Flanagan 1997 defines memory as the mental function of retaining data the storage system holding the data and the data which is retained It is evident from reviewing the literature that an explanation of memory as a set of stages proves to be more understandable than as a single process the theories of memory all providing information about how memory is structured and organised and the findings from the research studies inevitably pointing in the direction of memory existing as a set of stages rather than a single process Therefore these are the areas which are to be outlined in this essay in order to understand the need to explain human memory as a set of stages The nature of memory can be explained as a set of stages that are necessary but not sufficient for memory to have taken place These involve input -registering or encoding information where a memory trace is formed from translating the sensory data storage which is either temporary or permanent and output which involves retrieval - memories would be useless unless they could be retrieved It is these stages that form the fundamental characteristics of the process of memory and in order for this to occur it is necessary for the data to become engaged in the memory structure Memory structure can be separated into three distinct categories sensory memory input store where the sensory data remains unchanged in the mind for a brief time but is rapidly lost through decay short -term memory- which has a relatively limited capacity approximately seven items with rapid decay being prevented through rehearsal and finally long-term memory which
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