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Levels Of

Processing
Structural, Phonological, Semantic

focussing instead on memory processes. and that the way in which memory is processed can affect the likelihood of it being retrieved in the future. They suggested that information can be processed at different levels. .Craik and Lockhart (1972)  Proposed an alternative to structural models of memory.

processing can be shallow and superficial. Craik and Lockhart argued that deeper levels of processing result in more long lasting and more retrievable memories. .Depth of encoding  Depending on what we do with information at the time of encoding. whereas shallow levels of processing result in memories that are less longlasting and less likely to be retrieved. or deeper and more meaningful.

Tasks that require different levels of processing. . BOY Structural: Is this word in capital letters? Phonological: Does this word rhyme with Toy? Semantic: Does this word fit in the following sentence? The ______ ran ahead of the group.

mentally sounding out the word. or put it into a meaningful category. . To complete the second task it is necessary to carry out sound based processing.Tasks explained  In the first task it is simply necessary to process the word structurally. To complete the third task it is necessary to think about the meaning of the word and relating it to the rest of the sentence. scanning the word visually.

.Tasks explained continued  Craik and Lockhart’s theory would predict that words which are processed for meaning (deep processing) will be remembered better than words processed for sound (intermediate processing) which in turn will be recalled better than words which are processed for superficial characteristics such as shape. size or colour (shallow processing).

Method Participants were shown 60 words. . one at a time.Study Aim Craik and Tulving (1975) investigated the effects of different types of processing on the recall of words. and for each word they had to answer one of three questions. These questions were the same as shown earlier in this PPT.

They were shown a list of 180 words and had to pick out the original 60 words.Method continued…. Participants then answered the question. When the 60 questions had been answered. . Participants heard each question and then were shown the corresponding word for a brief period. participants were given a recognition test.

and 65% in the semantic question condition.Results Approximately 17% of words in the visual question condition were correctly recognised. 37% in the auditory question condition. . Conclusion The findings confirmed Craik and Lockhart’s theory about depth of processing: that the type of processing which takes place when information is encoded affects later recall.

. Although they emphasise process rather than structure. However. Craik and Lockhart do assume the existence of separate STM and LTM systems.Types of research   This is referred to as an incidental learning technique task because the participants did not know that they would be required to recall the original words at the end of the procedure. they see the function of STM in terms of the processes it carries out.

Evaluation   Craik and Lockhart’s (1972) theory provided a realistic and credible alternative to the structural approach to memory. They emphasised how processes which occur during learning affect the extent to which material can be retrieved from LTM (Medin et al. 2001) .

. Elaborative rehearsal involves elaboration of the material to be recalled. 1973). can be readily remembered without rehearsal. perhaps by weaving a list of words into a story.Evaluation   The theory would explain why some things. for example deeply significant and meaningful events. The theory also explains why elaborative rehearsal is more effective than maintenance or auditory (Craik and Watkins.

Evaluation  Maintenance or rote rehearsal is simply repeating the information over and over. Since elaborative rehearsal involves thinking about the meaning of the material. 2002). Elaborative rehearsal can add all kinds of extra images. . it is a deeper level of processing and therefore leads to better recall. associations and memories to enrich the material which has to be learned. resulting in better recall (Matlin. Contrast this with the MSM view of rehearsal as simple verbal repitition.

. and if recall was poor. just because participants were asked to say whether or not a word was in capital letters. There was no independent way of assessing whether processing was deep or shallow. then the processing must have been shallow. However. then deep processing must have taken place.Evaluation  A key problem for the theory concerned is the way in which depth of processing was measured. it should not be assumed that they did not engage in further deeper processing. Determining this relied on a circular definition which argued that if recall was good.

Lockhart and Craik (1990) accepted that in some cases shallow processing does not lead to rapid forgetting. In addition. . but they accept that their original model was rather oversimplified. and agree that they had not considered retrieval processes in sufficient detail.Evaluation  Lockhart and Craik (1990) have updated their model in response to criticisms and recent research findings. The basic ideas remain the same.