WOK: Memory Valeria Espinosa

Valeria Espinosa

Cayla Amparan, Preeti Iyengar, and Thomas Vincent

March 6-March 10

"WOK Badge: Memory"

Memory's Connection to Knowledge

Given the easy accessibility of information, is memory important as a basis of knowledge?

PLanning Journal

What have you learned so far?

Memory is changeable and can easily be influenced/distorted by the internet. People have access to the internet 24/7 and we use it for a variety of things. One of the things that I have learned about memory is how it relates to the google effect. The google effect is the “tendency to forget information that easily be found online.” Nowadays people don’t have to put the effort in memorizing certain tangible facts and abstract information since we can easily access this information from the internet. It's interesting how we tend to memorize information in which we can only emotional connect to. Although the next point is not based on my project I still think it's extremely interesting. I learned how memory is fallible. Whenever relying on your memory or other's memory, you should always leave room for doubt. This point should be taken in account whenever dealing with eye-witness testimony. In day to day trials, the jury tend to belive that eyewitness testimony is extremely reliable and this evidence can help plead one guilty or innocent. However, it is said that there have been hundreds of cases in which people have been accused of being guilty, when in reality they have been proven to being innocent.

Assess your badge project (paragraph) as it stands now?

In my opinion my paragraph still needs a lot of work. My only problem is that I can't really find a way to connect my evidence to my question. The thing that is extremely weird is that I have the hardest part done which is my analysis. The thing is tI am trying to connect all of it together. I am going to try to re-read my article and find a way to connect all of it. I feel like once I how to phrase my transition sentences it will all make sense. I still feel like it needs a lot of work, but I honestly can;t wait to see the end product. I am bit frustrated at the moment, but I know that it will be almost perfect once it's done.

What is the main point about your WOK that you want to make in your Badge Project ? (primary aim)

First of all, I would like to point out that this project has been extremely difficult for me. I am trying to find way in which I can use the elective reading we chose to answer the following question: Given the easy accessibility of information, is memory important as a basis of knowledge? I wasn't sure how I could relate the article written my Dean Burnett to our main knowledge question, but after reading over and over again I finally found some sort of connection between the two. The main point that I want is that memory is for a fact a basis of knowledge. I will be doing so by discussing how although nowadays we can easily access information through the internet, one of the major ways in which we could possibly process this information is through our memory. I want to show how memory is in a fact a storehouse and that although it can be unreliable at times, it is the only thing that shapes our personal and shared identity. I want to show that although we can easily access information through the internet, our memory influence how we gather this information. As a result, without memory we would be incapable of processing new iormation and therefore we would be unable to acquire new knowledge .

Reflection JournaL

I think that my WOK4 project went extremely well. In my opinion, the presentations are better. I think that with the presentations we can be more creative and at the same time it's so nice that we can work we our peers. With the essay I fell extremely restricted since we had to follow a format. I think that we should have spent a bit more time talking about the format because my friends and I were extremely confused. Although I liked doing presentations more than I liked this project, I still enjoyed writing it. I found it difficult connecting the evidence form the elective reading to my main topic sentence. Once I read over the article again and write a couple of notes, it was so much easier connecting the two. Compared to my draft, my final copy is so much better. My sentences flow and they all make sense. When I was looking at the final piece I wanted to make sure that I could relate almost every sentence to my question and of course my topic sentence. Although I was frustrated at the beginning, I realized that it was not as hard as it seemed. I think that this style of writing will prepare me for the essay that we will write next year.

Documentation

This badge project is by far one of the most difficult projects that I have done this semester. Although at times it was frustrating, I believe that it is good practice for our TOK essay in which we will write next year. I think that this essay really required a lot of critical thinking. At first, the format of the paragraph was confusing, but once we broke it done and analyzed each section of the sample essay, I was able to understand the format. Below are two 3 documents in which demonstrate my work. The first one, is the practice we did on WOK 3. Although I knew my information on WOK 3 it was still extremely difficult for me to put it into words, especially in that specific format. As a result, it is not my best piece of writing. I took the time to compare both the paragraphs on WOK 3 and the one of WOK 4 and it's extremely fascinating how I improved so much in my writing in just a couple of days. The second document has my first draft and random thoughts on the article and how it relates to TOK. Some of my writing is in Spanish because at times it's easier for me to analyze information. The last document is my final parapragh and it's the one in which I submitted on canvas.

Elective reading

For my elective readings I read "Is the internet killing our brain?" by Dean Burnett and “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” by Nicholas Carr. Although both pieces of writing were interesting and informative, I decided to write my journal and my badge project on "Is the internet killing our brain?"

"Is the internet killing our brain?" | Dean Burnett

Burnett discusses the importance of memory and whether or not it's negatively affected by the exposure to the internet. Burnett explains that since information can be easily found online, it can be forgotten within a short period of time. People don't have to put effort into memorizing certain tangible facts since they can easily access this information form the internet. This relates to one of the key terms known as the google effect. The google effect is the "tendency to forget information that can easily be found online." This shows that the internet is affecting our memory. This effect has caused people to worry and they think that it will weaken our ability to remember things. However, that does not mean that we don’t process bits of pieces of this information. This is because we unconsciously process information. The brain has the capacity to memorize things that have emotional significance. But what can we do with the abstract information that we don't easily process? He discusses how with the help of the internet, we can easily access this abstract information numerous of times and therefore it can be encoded as memories. This article has taught me that moment although nowadays we can easily access information via internet, our memory influences how we gather this information. As a result without memory we would be incapable of processing new information and therefore would be unable to acquire new knowledge. This article was so interesting that I decided to base my my paragraph on WOK 4 on this article. I think that the idea of memory is interesting and the fact that without memory we would be unable to acquire knowledge is completely scary.

Extension Proposal

How reliable is your memory? | Elizabeth Loftus

Give reasons for adding it to the existing elective reading list.

Elizabeth Loftus is a physiological scientist that studies memory. She first started talking about an eye witness testimony regarding Titus, a restaurant manager, who was mistakenly classified as a rapist. Titus' car was similar to the one of the rapist, therefor the police took a picture of Titus and put it in a photo lineup. This was showed to the victim, and she pointed to Titus' photo saying that "that one's the closest." He was then convicted for rape and taken to jail. Later on Loftus then goes and says how Titus was later pleaded not guilty due to the finding of the actual perpetartor and then released out of jail. This article shows how memory is faliable and of course changeable. The retrieval of memories can suffer from various kinds of interference and therefore can be unreliable. This is shown in a day-to-day basis; In day to day trials, the jury tend to belive that eyewitness testimony is extremely reliable and this evidence can help plead one guilty or innocent. However, it is said that there have been hundreds of cases in which people have been accused of being guilty, when in reality they have been proven to being innocent. Our memories are unreliable. This is because memory is based on the reconstruction model. This model shows that in order for a memory to be retrieved it has to be reconstructed "piece by piece." This reconstruction can cause doubt and inaccuracy which shows how memory is unreliable. Memory is also lost over time. As a result, over time memories becoming more and more unreliable. Loftus emphasized on the that since our memories are fallible, there should always be room for doubt. I believe that this should be added to our elective reading because it further explains the section called "Unreliable Memories" in the TOK textbook. It also talks about how memory is fallible and changeable which is a key point that is connately repeated throughout this chapter. I think this video is a great way for people to further understand the doubt that people should consider whenever relying on one's and other's memories. It also focuses on eye-witness testimony, which is a topic highlighted in the textbook.

3 knowledge questions

  1. Knowing that memory is fallible and changeable, is it still a reliable way of knowing?
  2. Is there knowledge without memory?
  3. Can we know things which are beyond our personal present experience?

THE END

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Created with images by ElisaRiva - "head brain thoughts"

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