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Declarative memory is the aspect of human memory that stores facts and experiences. It is so called because it refers to memories that can be consciously discussed, or declared. It applies to standard textbook learning and knowledge, as well memories that can be 'travelled back to' in one's 'mind's eye'. It is contrasted with procedural memory, which applies to skills. Declarative memory is subject to forgetting, but frequently-accessed memories can last indefinitely. Declarative memories are best established by using active recall combined with mnemonic techniques and spaced repetition.
Types of declarative memoryEdit
There are two types of declarative memory:
- Episodic memory
- Event memory; memory of a specific moment in time and place
- Semantic memory
- Fact knowledge independent of time- and place- context
Some people believe that episodic memory and semantic memory are really just one type of memory. However, most believe they are quite different, and indeed distinct.
Physically speaking, declarative memory requires the medial temporal lobe, especially the hippocampus and related areas of the cerebral cortex. The famous amnesiac H.M. had great medial temporal structure damage and primarily declarative impairment.
References & BibliographyEdit
- Cahill, L., and McGaugh, J. L. (1998). Mechanisms of emotional arousal and lasting declarative memory , Trends in Neuroscience 21 294-9
- de Quervain, D. J.-F., Roozendaal, B., Nitsch, R. M., McGaugh, J. L. and Hock, C. (2000). Acute cortisone administration impairs retrieval of long-term declarative memory in healthy subjects , Nature Neuroscience 3, 313-14.
- fi:Deklaratiivinen muisti