The Cognitive and Neural Correlates of Rich and Vivid Memory for Real World Events

Bush, Alice (2023) The Cognitive and Neural Correlates of Rich and Vivid Memory for Real World Events. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Episodic memories are composed of rich, perceptual details, and are re-experienced from a specific visual perspective. The aim of this thesis was to investigate the processes which allow us to remember in a rich and vivid way and the neural underpinnings of rich, successful retrieval. The behavioural studies conducted in Chapters 2 and 3 used a newly created video stimulus set, depicting real-world events. In Chapter 2, these stimuli were used to investigate retrieval differences following the encoding of unisensory (audio, visual), compared to multisensory (audio-visual) versions of the videos. Accuracy, vividness and amount of descriptive details retrieved were not positively affected by the presentation of multisensory stimuli. Chapter 3 compared the effects of encoding the videos from a field or an observer perspective on subsequent retrieval performance. No performance differences were observed when comparing the two perspectives, but observer memories contained a greater amount of sensory details, compared to field ones. Chapter 4 reviewed existing literature on the role of the angular gyrus in episodic memory retrieval and proposed that the angular gyrus is sensitive to the richness of recollected information and amount of details retrieved. This hypothesis was tested in an fMRI study in Chapter 5, focusing on the role of the angular gyrus in the retrieval of autobiographical memories. Results indeed demonstrated a positive relationship between angular gyrus activity and amount of details remembered. This association was seen for the retrieval of both episodic (specific) and semantic (categoric) events. This study also illustrated differential involvement of angular gyrus subregions, PGa and PGp in the retrieval of episodic and semantic memories. Taken together, these chapters outline behavioural processes and neural correlates that support our ability to retrieve memories in a rich and vivid manner, giving us a sense of re-living an event.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Chris White
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2024 14:47
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2024 14:47

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