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The final Beautiful Mind event will be focused around our memory, a cognitive process that allows us to relive and learn from past experiences. A common worry surrounding ageing is memory loss or forgetfulness. With this in mind, we will explore whether brain training puzzles and late night Sudoku’s may hinder our memory and attention. Our memory is also surprisingly easy to manipulate, so we will find out how our memory works as well as the effect of fabricated memories. In addition, we will look into the process of recognition and how this may allow diagnosis of memory problems.
The More The Better? Increased Brain Activity Can Be Bad For Your Memory and Attention!
Tobias Bast (Associate Professor)
Problems with memory and attention have long been mainly linked to decreased activity in certain brain regions. Conversely, it is often assumed that ‘boosting’ brain activity may improve brain functions, such as memory and attention. However, more recent research indicates that the opposite can be the case! Faulty neuronal inhibition, which leads to INCREASED, but poorly controlled, neuron activity in brain regions such as the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus may cause problems with memory and attention, including in schizophrenia and age-related cognitive decline.
Using Gaze to Understand Recognition
Dr Jasper Robinson (Associate Professor)
Recognition of music or faces can be distinguished from other forms of memory and involves two distinct processes. Recollection involves recognition of an item when we can retrieve other information about its prior occurrence—when/where this encounter happened. Familiarity is the tantalising feeling of knowing that the item is familiar in the absence of any when/where information. I’ll talk about some experimental procedures that have been used to understand these separable components of memory and how they could be used to diagnose memory problems.
10 Things Everyone Should Know About Memory
Lucy Justice (Senior Lecturer in Psychology)
Dr Lucy Justice's work focuses on both the theoretical and applied aspects of autobiographical memory, False and fabricated memory and applied memory in health and legal settings. Tonight she will be highlighting how our memory works in ways the often surprises us and is contrary to our beliefs. She will also demonstrate how easily our memory can be manipulated.