Practice test for Memory 

Note: These questions are part of a larger data base of questions & are selected 
to represent the type of question you should expect on exams. Exam questions, 
however, may deal with topics not covered in the practice tests or in lectures but are discussed in 
your textbook. You are responsible for the content of your text book plus the content of 
lectures, interactive activities, & material on the web site.

Use these sample questions to test yourself & to practice for the test. 

1. The steps to memory can best be described as follows: 

•  finding it, using it, storing it, using it again. 
 •  putting it in, keeping it in, getting it out. 
  •  sensing it, perceiving it, remembering it, forgetting it. 
   •  a series of passive data files.

2. According to Sperling, what is the capacity of iconic memory?

•  Everything that can be seen at one time. 
 •  Everything that can be heard in one minute. 
  •  Everything that can be sensed in one second. 
   •  Everything that can be perceived in a life time. 
3. The three processes of memory are: 

•  attention, encode, feedback 
 •  encode, retrieve, motivate 
  •  encode, imitate, retrieve 
   •  encode, store, retrieve 
4. What is a good & accurate way to remember what iconic memory refers to? 

•  Iconic memory is visual information in short-term memory. 
 •  Icon means image and therefore iconic memory refers to visual information. 
  •  Icon means sound & therefore iconic memory refers to auditory information. 
   •  "Con" in iconic refers to something false or bogus & therefore iconic memory 
        refers to a false memory. 
5. Which type of memory best explains the "What?" phenomenon?

•  iconic sensory memory 
 •  echoic sensory memory 
  •  short-term memory 
   •  tactile sensory memory
6. The function of sensory memory is to 

•  weed out what is irrelevant in incoming information. 
 •  hold information in its raw form for a brief period of time. 
  •  burn sensations into long-term memory for later retrieval and inspection. 
   •  make quick associations between new data and things you already know.

7. For information to travel from sensory memory to short-term memory, it must 
first be ___________ and then encoded primarily into ___________ form. 

•  unconsciously chosen; auditory 
 •  selectively attended to; visual 
  •  biologically chosen; visual 
   •  selectively attended to; auditory
8. Iconic is to echoic as _______ is to _______. 

•  visual; auditory 
 •  general; specific 
  •  graphical; visual 
   •  long duration; short duration 

9. You are introduced to someone at a party. While talking with the person, you realize that 
you have already forgotten the person's name. What amount of time does it typically take 
before such information is lost from short-term memory?

•  approximately Ό of a second 
 •  usually no more than 4 seconds 
  •  typically between 12 and 30 seconds 
   •  short-term memories typically last a lifetime

10. Of the following, which is not a function of sensory memory? 

•  gives decision time 
 •  prevents being overwhelmed 
  •  allows for rehearsal of information 
   •  provides stability, playback, & recognition
11. Early studies of the capacity of short-term memory suggested that most people 
could remember approximately __________ bits of information. 

•  two 
 •  three 
  •  seven 
   •  ten

12. Which of the following pairs accurately describes the two central characteristics of 
short-term memory? 

•  unlimited duration, unlimited capacity 
 •  limited duration, unlimited capacity 
  •  unlimited duration, limited capacity 
   •  limited duration, limited capacity 
13. Mary just met an attractive man named Austin at a party. She wants to make sure she 
remembers his name. What should she do? 

•  Mary should repeat the name continuously so as to commit it to long-term memory. 
 •  Mary should chunk it by remembering the first three letters as a set and then 
    remembering the remaining letters as a set. 
  •  Mary should make it more meaningful. For example, she might remind herself that 
     Austin has the same name as the capital of Texas. 
   •  Mary should create a song to help her remember his name.

14. Repeating information over and over so that it does not fade from short-term memory is 
called ________ rehearsal.

•  elaborative 
 •  episodic 
  •  maintenance 
   •  intentional
15. __________ memory includes what people can do or demonstrate, whereas __________ 
memory is about what people know and can report. 

•  nondeclarative; declarative 
 •  declarative; nondeclarative 
  •  semantic; procedural 
   •  episodic; semantic
16. We can retrieve __________ memory, but not __________ memory. 

•  semantic; episodic 
 •  episodic; semantic 
  •  procedural; semantic 
   •  semantic; procedural 

17. The semantic network model of memory suggests that the ___________ nodes you must 
pass through to access information, the longer it will take for you to recall information. 

•  fewer 
 •  more 
  •  bigger the 
   •  more complex the

18.  Actively making meaningful connections between the information you are learning with 
information you already know is called: 

•  sensory encoding 
 •  automatic encoding 
  •  elaborative rehearsal 
   •  maintenance rehearsal 

19.  Phineas walks out of his office and into the conference room. However, after he leaves 
his office, he forgets what he was coming into the conference room for. According to the 
encoding specificity hypothesis , what should Phineas do to regain his lost memory?

•  Phineas should return to his office to help him remember what he has forgotten. 
 •  Phineas should ask someone else, "What did I come in here for?" 
  •  Phineas should remain in the conference room and simply relax so that his memory 
      should return. 
   •  Phineas should consider seeing a doctor, since such memory loss can be sign 
        of mental illness.

20. Which of the following best demonstrates the difference between recognition 
and recall? 

•  multiple-choice exams versus true-false questions 
 •  speaking lines in a play versus playing the piano without sheet music 
  •  picking the assailant out of a lineup versus describing the face of an assailant 
   •  reporting the color of your socks (eyes closed) versus reciting a poem 

21. When creating a presentation, many public speaking instructors will tell you to develop 
a strong opening or attention getter to your presentation as well as a good summary and 
finish. What aspect of memory best explains these suggestions? 

•  parallel distributing model of memory 
 •  chunking 
  •  elaborative rehearsal theory 
   •  serial position phenomenon

22. The classic forgetting curve that Ebbinghaus described for nonsense syllables has a: 

•  slight initial decline 
 •  series of alternating upward and downward slopes 
  •  slight upward slope followed by a rapid downward slope 
   •  rapid downward slope, then levels out, & declines gradually

23. Your mother tells you to dress for success at your interview because its all about 
"first impressions." In other words, she is telling you that people remember what they 
see first. This belief is in line with what element of memory?

•  the primacy effect 
 •  the tip of the tongue phenomenon 
  •  the regency effect 
   •  the power of false positive
24. It appears that the tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon results from: 

•  amnesia 
 •  nodes that are misaligned 
  •  inadequate retrieval cues or interference 
   •  misfiring in the nerves that make up the hippocampus 

25. Research by Elizabeth Loftus show that eyewitness recognition is very prone to 
what psychologists call 

•  automatic encoding. 
 •  false positive. 
  •  a flashbulb memory. 
   •  a regency effect.
26. There are at least three problems with eyewitness testimony. Which one of the following 
statements is not one of the problems?

•  Testimony is assumed to be accurate & is thought to be reliable evidence. 
 •  Law enforcement officials may influence testimony through misleading questions. 
  •  The confidence of eyewitnesses regarding their testimony typically declines 
      over time. 
   •  There is a weak correlation between the confidence of the eyewitness and 
        the testimony given. 

27. The tendency of certain elements to enter long term memory with little or no effort 
to encode and organize them is what defines 

•  encoding specificity. 
 •  automatic encoding. 
  •  flashbulb memories. 
   •  eidetic imagery.

28. The ability to remember where you were and what you were doing when the United 
States was attacked on September 11, 2001, in an example of 

•  eyewitness testimony. 
 •  encoding specificity hypothesis. 
  •  false-memory syndrome. 
   •  flashbulb memory.

29. Which of the following is true about the process of encoding? 

•  It holds information in memory for some time. 
 •  It involves accessing information in memory for use. 
  •  It involves transforming information from one form to another in order for it to get 
      into a particular part of memory. 
    •  It is limited to only converting sensory information into signals for the brain to use. 
     •  The length of time that is involved in this process may vary greatly, anywhere from 
         a couple of seconds to permanently. 
30. The part of memory that traditionally has a capacity of about 7 items and whose 
duration can be increased through techniques such as maintenance rehearsal and chunking is called: 

•  long term memory. 
 •  sensory memory. 
  •  iconic memory. 
   •  echoic memory. 
    •  working memory.

31. In Hermean Ebbinghaus's classic study on memory and the forgetting curve, how long 
after learning the list does most forgetting happen?

•  Forgetting started almost immediately. 
 •  one hour 
  •  five hours 
   •  nine hours
32. You are surprised by the fact that you cannot remember if Abraham Lincoln's head 
faces the left or right on a penny. This is all the more surprising given the fact that you 
work with money at your job on nearly a daily basis. What would best explain such an 
inability to recall the information? 

•  encoding failure 
 •  decay theory 
  •  interference theory 
   •  distributed practice effect

33. Henry Gustav Molaison, infamously known as H.M., was unable to form new declarative 
memories. He suffered from what psychologists call 

•  psychogenic amnesia. 
 •  retrograde amnesia. 
  •  retroactive amnesia. 
   •  anterograde amnesia.

34. Your English instructor has given you an assignment to write down your most favorite 
memory from when you were 12 months old. What might you tell him? 

•  Memories from this time are exceptionally vivid because of the exciting nature 
    of childhood. 
 •  Students will not be able to recall such memories if they had yet to develop the 
     ability to talk by age one. 
   •  Students' memories are detailed but often inaccurate. 
    •  Students will probably not be able to recall events from such an early age.

35. Which of the following is NOT an example of recall?

•  Answering an essay question on an English test 
 •  Remembering a friend’s name when asked by another person 
  •  Answering a question on a multiple choice test correctly 
   •  Remembering where you placed your car keys 
    •  Filling in the blanks of information on a college application.

36. A young girl does not remember how to play a piece of music on her saxophone because 
she never really paid close attention to the music when she was first learning the piece. 
This is an example of what theory of forgetting?

•  Proactive interference 
 •  Decay 
  •  Disuse 
   •  Retroactive interference 
    •  Encoding failure 

37. Julie first learned French, then she learned Spanish. However, she finds that often times 
when she speaks French, Spanish words seem to creep in. This is an example 
of _______________.

•  retroactive interference 
 •  memory trace 
  •  constructive processing 
   •  levels of processing
38. Which of the following is not a stage in the information-processing model of memory? 

•  short-term memory 
 •  long-term memory 
  •  episodic memory 
   •  sensory register 
39. What do episodic and semantic memories have in common? 

•  they are forms of working memory 
 •  they are easily described in words 
  •  they can easily be retrieved 
   •  they are forms of procedural memory
40. The expression "You can't teach an old dog new tricks" would support which theory 
of forgetting"? 

•  repression 
 •  retroactive interference 
  •  proactive interference 
   •  pass interference
                              Robert C. Gates