Memory has an infinite capacity.Glanzer and Cunitz

Memory is crucial for human function and is the foundation of learning and experience. There are three phases of processing and storing memory: encoding, storage and retrieval. Encoding transforms new information into a form that can be stored into memory. Storage contains the information in the memory, and when needed, retrieval gets back the information so that it can be used.The multistore model of memory was proposed by Atkinson and Shiffrin in 1968. This structural model focuses on the storage of information and proposes that memory is composed of three stores: a sensory register, short term memory, and long term memory. Information is transferred from one store to the other in a linear form and is an information processing model that first inputs, then processes, and lastly outputs. The three stores each have a different capacity level and store information in different durations. First, the information is spotted by sense organs and is stored in sensory memory for a fraction of a second. Then, this information is passed to short term memory. ┬áThe limited capacity for short term memory of 7 items +/-2. For approximately 30 seconds, the information is stored in the form of sound. This information will then be transferred to long term memory. When the material is not rehearsed, new information that enters the short term memory store will displace or decays older information. The information in long term memory is processed by meaning. Long term memory possibly has an infinite capacity.Glanzer and Cunitz (1966) gave evidence that supported the multistore model. They conducted studies on the serial position effect using free recall experiments. In these experiments, participants received a list of 20+words and were required to remember them. The participants were then asked to later restate these words in any order. The results showed a pattern known as the serial position curve. Participants were able to remember more of the first and the last words on the list. The reason for the primacy effect was that the first words had been moved into long term memory. The reason for the recency effect was that the last words on the list were still in short term memory when the participants remembered the words. While the multistore model has been an influential theory in the field of psychology, it has been criticized because of its simplicity. Moreover, researchers argue that the models didn’t show how the different stores interact with each other.