Short Term Memory

Short-term memory (or "primary" or "active memory") is the capacity for holding information in mind in an active, readily available state for a short period of time. The duration of short-term memory (when rehearsal or active maintenance is prevented) is believed to be in the order of seconds. How many unrelated items can be stored in short term memory

Sequence recollection

Position within a list

  • Your teacher will read a list of twenty terms.
  • As soon as the list is completed, write down as many as you can recall.
  • When you have finished writing down terms you have recalled, check of the terms you recalled in this form.
  • Examine the class data and summary data. In the quickwrite, describe the patterns (in terms of position within the list) you observe in terms of which terms are remembered the most frequently and which are remembered the least.
  • Is class data consistent with the serial position effect?


  • Discuss the significance of these three tests and their results using your class quick write.