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State-dependent Memory

When learning something new, people are aware (consciously or unconsciously) of the environment in which their learning takes place. This learning environment includes the physical setting, the time of day, and even the people who are present during learning. Studies have shown that when people later need to remember information they have learned, their ability to do so is affected by their current environment. If the environment is the same or similar to the original learning environment recall - the ability to remember - will be easier and more successful. Psychologists refer to this as state-dependent memory.

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Using the example from the lecture, explain the concept of state-dependent memory.

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In the reading, it talks about state-dependent memory, which means that a person’s ability to remember is easier and more successful if the environment is the same or similar to the original learning environment. In the listening, the professor gives out one example to illustrate this title. When the professor was in middle school. He and his friends were asked by their teacher to do an oral presentation on tropical plants. So they spent the whole morning memorizing all the names and information about the plants in their classroom. However, when they got back home and wanted to continue their preparation for their next morning’s presentation they found it quite hard to remember the plant details because the professor’s families were watching television and it was not as quiet and easy-to-concentrate as in their classroom so they started getting a little bit worried. However, surprisingly, next morning when they went back to the classroom and did the speech, everything turned out being very smooth. And this case demonstrated how the environment will affect our ability to remember things.
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