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GE Cluster 73B Week 1 Notes

by: Nichole Chen

GE Cluster 73B Week 1 Notes GE Cluster 73A

Nichole Chen
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Meldrum's and Lau's Lecture Notes from Week 1
The Science, Philosophy and History of the Brain
Scott Chandler
Class Notes




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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Nichole Chen on Monday January 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to GE Cluster 73A at University of California - Los Angeles taught by Scott Chandler in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 63 views. For similar materials see The Science, Philosophy and History of the Brain in Neuroscience at University of California - Los Angeles.

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Date Created: 01/11/16
Memory Palaces and Dream Catchers (Lecture 1; 5 January 2016) Memory was considered an Art in ancient and medieval times ­ Learning and studying (There was no printing so every book was important and so  precious) ­ Transmission of information (between countries) ­ Poetry and drama ­ Oratory rhetoric (speeches and conveying ideas was important) ­ The Ancient Art of Memory: memory methods Aristotle’s rule of voluntary memory (350 BCE) ­ Contiguity (following in natural order) ­ Similarity (group things together) ­ Contrast Simonides (of Ceos 556­468 BCE) ­ Simonides was called out of a banquet and after he left, the roof collapsed and killed  everyone. He was able to reconstruct the whole hall and the people inside for relatives of the dead Memory and Creativity ­ The Greeks thought that memory and creativity were mirrors of each other, two  variants of the same skill or attribute. ­ Importance: memory is like a web. The more you know (the more you can  remember), the more associations you can make with new things you learn. This  makes learning even easier because of relationships. The more you know, the more  associations you will have for new things you learn and the easier it will be to learn  more The Rhetorica ad Herennium ­ Short book written between 82 and 86 BCE describes the memory palace method  (also the journey method or the method of loci), still used today by “memory athletes” (people who train to compete to remember things ­ Memory palaces: to biuild a memory palace, imagine a space in your mind (it works  better for a place that you know very well and you can walk from space to space and  it has to be an extensive place), and populate it with the images of things you want to  remember (visually imagine the things you want to remember and give each thing a  lot of context, meaning, interaction, clear visualization, and connect it with the next  thing in line). Keep in mind that you are more likely to remember things that are  “exceptionally base, dishonorable, extraordinary, great, unbelievable, or laughable.” Thomas Aquinas’ Memory Rules ­ Order ­ Affection (interest in the things) ­ Similitudes ­ Meditation “The Ancient Art of Memory” ­ Elaborative neural encoding: o Visual and other sensory imagery o Bizarre Associations o Associations to time and place o Organization o Narration (tell yourself a story to make it work) ­ Are these techniques used in dreams to preserve episodic memories? o Suggested that new memories are associated through bizarre and emotional  imagery with established memories, to create a thick web of notes that will  enable their future retrieval (dreams help you remember recent memories so  they can be embedded into permanent memories) BUT how are memories created and stored in the brain? How does it work? ­ Theoretical hypotheses ­ Animal experiments (most information are from animal experiments, but animal  memories are limited) ­ Working with people with brain damage Decartes ­ “ When the mind wills to recall something, this violation causes the little pineal gland, by inclining successively to different sides, to impel the animal spirits toward  different parts of the brain, sunitl they come upon that part where the traces are left of  the thing which it wishes to remember, so that these spirits enter more readily” ­ He was way off, but he stressed the importance of memory being stored in the brain  and the importance of repetition for long­term memories John Locke ­ Thought memory relies on ‘association of ideas” ­ The mind stores sensory impressions and ideas, and ­ Links similar simple memories to form more complex impressions, ­ But when the ideas and impressions are not renewed, the colors fade and “the print  wears out” David Hartley’s “Association Theory” ­ External stimuli causes vibrations in the nerves ­ Repeated exposure to a stimulus increases the likelihood of nerve vibration ­ Overlapping vibrations will trigger each other ­ Memories were impressed in the uniform “medullary substance” of the midbrain The Engram: Richard Sermon (1904) ­ The “Memory Trace” or “Engram” creates permanent physical change in the cells of  the brain, which are strengthened by repetition (any encounter with the Engram  activates it) ­ When a sensory impression or idea resembling or containing an element of the earlier  trace is encountered, the engram is reactivated. ­ But what and where is the Engram? Do the nerves grow when a new memory trace is  created? Are specific neurochemicals activated? Or specific proteins synthesized? Are engrams formed only or primarily near the sensory cortex? Once an engram is  formed, how long will it last? Ivan Pavlov’s experiment with dogs (example of  “association of associations”) ­ Created association between food and bell, so when the dog heard the bell, the dog  salivated, even when the bell was paired with negative shocks ­ Suggested that strong excitations of localized areas of the sensory cortex radiated to  form weaker responses in contiguous areas. The memory is so strong that overrides  future associations Shepherd Ivory Franz ­ Put cats in puzzle boxes until it got trained to pull the correct lever to open the box.  Each time, it took a shorter time for the cat to pull the lever and eventually, the cat  knew how to get out without frustration. ­ Franz then excised their frontal lobes and put them through the same task, but they  were still motivated to escape and often relearned the skill FAIRLY QUICKLY (more quickly then a cat who has never learned it). No mater what part of the brain is taken  out, the cat still knew how to get out ­ Similar experiment with monkeys: overtrain monkey and then remove parts of the  brain, and the overtrained monkeys still got the food often on the first try ­ Conclusion: we don’t know where memories are stored, how they are stored, and  what memory means physiology Karl Lashley ­ Trained mice to run mazes and found that they could still run the maze, even when  parts of the brain was removed (of brain was over­removed, the mice became  retarded). ­ Even though memory starts with the sensory cortex, it is somewhere else because the  rats could still run the maze Carlyle Jacobsen (1935): ­ Trained animals with food under a shell and asked them to find the food. ­ Chimps with cortical lesions could relearn skills; but did poorly on delayed0response  tests. ­ After excised brain, some animals could not find the food IF they were distracted for a time (delayed response) ­ BUT Karl Lashley thought that concentration also plays a part. Delaying the food task was also focus on concentration Lasley’s conclusion “In search of the Engram” (195) ­ Cell Growth is too slow to account for the rabidity of learning  memory is not the  growth of new neurons or synaptic connections ­ Memories are not localized but distributed across the cortex ­ Learning is more than a combination of reflexes (salivating is not just an impulse) ­ Learned (conditioned) responses are formed in response to stimuli, but also to setting,  timing, and affect (memory is a thick process and any little thing can bring up  memory) ­ “Every memory becomes part of a more or less extensive organization” Theodule­Armand Ribot (1839­1916) ­ Les Malades de la Memorie (1881): Ribot’s law of retrograde amnesia ­ Progressive loss of memory: o First of recent events o Then of ideas and concepts o Then of ideas past events o Then feelings and affections o Finally of daily habits and routines ­ Distingush between declarative (an event in life; semantic­facts and concepts;  episodic­life experiences) and procedural (a routine; motor skills; perceptionsl habits) memory: “The destruction of memory [by trauma] affects only its highest and most  unstable forms, those personal in character and which, being accompanied by  consciousness and localization of time, constitute…psychic memory.” (each type of  memory has its own set of addresses in the brain Kurt Goldstein (1878­1965) ­ Found in the 1930s that brain lesions will disrupt complex memory patterns, formed  by the “rules” of similarity and contiguity, but not all pats of memory will be lost ­ Declarative memories are associative and non­ linear. Each image, fact, or experience, has hundreds and thousands of addresses. Memories are a WEB The Case of Henry M. ­ Had surgery for epilepsy (at 27 in 1953), which removed the left and right medial  temporal cortex, the amygdala, and part of the hippocampus ­ He permanently loss the ability to form new long­term memories (no more new short  term memories). He could only remember anything before the surgery. ­ Taught him task and he would learn it, but not recognize the task an hour later, but his performance would improve over time. Through constant teaching, he could learn a  lot of new things. ­ No conscious access, but it affects behavior (like doctor who introduces himself with  a buzzer in his hand) ­ Importance: hippocampus was involved in forming and preserving explicit memories  of new facts and image (declarative memories). It also confirmed that memory had  multiple locations Role of hippocampus (hypothesis) ­ New memories are formed and anchored to the hippocampus, but as time goes on, the  memories are associated with one another *see take home points from slides Memory and SDT (Lecture 2; 7 January 2016) Types of Memory ­ Peripheral o Sensory Memory o Muscle Memory ­ Short Term Memory (Working Memory) ­ Long Term Memory o Explicit (declarative): Semantic (facts; recalling memories that are subjective)  and Events (episodic; recalling memories from a specific period and time);  things that can be verbalized (“I know that…”) o Implicit (non­declarative): priming (attention); procedural (skills/habits);  Associative Learning (Emotional responses and skeletal musculature); Non­ associative learning (habituation and sensitization); things that can’t be  verbalized (“I know how…”) Experiments to test Memory: ­ Word List o A list of numbers, words, or pictures presented to subjects to study and later  asked to recall from a new list if it was in the list or not (if it was OLD or  NEW) o Two kinds of errors: miss (wrong; forgetting) or false alarm (false positive;  hallucination)  Its not just the accuracy that matters, but also the tendency to say yes  or no that varies from person to person.  Therefore, just checking miss is not enough, but checking false alarm  is also important) o Eventhing is association to the  SDT Old Ne Oils Hit (Target) False Alarm New Miss Correct Rejection Signal Detection Theory ­ Example: When you present a word that is familiar, neurons will fire at a rate of 40  (for example). Sometimes it fires more and sometimes is less, but after several times,  it forms a bell shaped curve. But if you present a new word, the average is about 10  herz (example). This allows you to set a criterion for what is a new word and what is  an old word. So for example, you can set 25 as a cutoff for new and old words ­ Pass criterion in the right curve is a MISS. Pass criterion in the left curve to the right  is a FALSE ALARM ­ Depending on the objective, there are different distributions ­ If the two distributions are lined up, it means there is ZERO memory ­ Two cases in mental stressing: recognizing and recalling


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