Different Types Of Human Memory-Remembering

Memory is the mental capacity to store, recall or to recognize the past experienced event. The term “remembering” is used to mean either retaining experience or recalling them. Memory receives , encodes, modifies and retrieves information. There are three types of memory. Memory is selective perception, without memory we even could not reflect upon ourselves. When we think of what it means to be human we must acknowledge the centrality of memory. Our memory is the library of our personal experiences.

Types Of Memory

There are three types of memory through which we can store and recall things.

Sensory Memory

Sensory memory preserves fleeting impressions of sensory stimuli, sight, sound, smells and textures but for only a second or two. the major function of sensory memory is to hold information long enough for it to be processed further. Sensory memory quickly fade if they are not processed further in an adaptive characteristic of the memory system.

We know more about visual and auditory memories than others. A visual memory is called icon and lasts about half a second. An auditory memory is called an echo and lasts several seconds.


It represents sensory memory for the hearing sense. Auditory information travels as sound waves and reached to inner ear through outer and middle ear. The physical stimuli encoded with the biochemical processes that give rise to sensation and perception. Acoustic Encoding, it is the encoding of words their sounds and other auditory input to store or retrieve.


Short Term Memory (STM)

It is related to “working” memory, when we attend to and perceive a stimulus a representation of a stimulus enters a short-term memory. The information in STM is usually available for much longer. STM is an intermediate memory process between the fleeting events of sensory memory and long term memory.

“Working memory allows us to construct a continually updated working model of the world and where we are in it. Working memory make it possible to think and solve problems”. (Simon,1989)

STM allows us to store, organize and integrate facts. Even in the situation when we must remember information for only few seconds.

Long-Term Memory (LTM)

Long-term memory constitutes a person’s total knowledge of world or one’s self. Long-term memory is the store house of all the experiences events, information, emotions, skills, words, rules and judgements. This memory system enables us to do much more than just retain a record of past events, experiences or thoughts. It also make it possible for us to solve new problems and apply a variety of rules to manipulate abstract symbols, to think and to create things we have never experienced.

LTM involves information that have been retained for brief intervals or as long as lifetime. In LTM important interactions between encoding and retrieval occur. and it is often difficult to know whether forgetting from long term is due to a loss from storage or a failure in retrieval.

Malfunctioning in memory types may cause memory disorders like Short-term memory loss, Long-term memory loss, depression and forgetting.

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