Wright Laboratory (Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio)


Computer network architectures -- Computer simulation; Wide area networks (Computer networks)


This report presents a functional model of memory based on verbal learning and physiological data. These diverse empirical data are used to describe several basic mechanisms of memory including: (a) separate mechanisms for short-term memory and for long-term memory; (b) the initiation of long-term memory by short-term memory; (c) the properties of short-term memory including autonomous decay, distortion by interference, and a limited capacity; (d) the properties of long-term memory including a consolidation process dependent upon ribonucleic acid (RNA) and enzymes, and a very large capacity; (e) the functional grouping of items in long-term memory; and (f) consolidated (long-term) memories that are reactivated, being brought back into short-term memory. Time courses of these events are described. The ultimate benefit of a detailed knowledge of the mechanisms of memory is to help us to better understand how humans learn. This report describes how mnemonic techniques work and presents suggestions about how to improve memory training. iii

Table of Contents

Introduction -- Three current models of memory -- Evidence that short-term memory initiates long-term memory -- The nature of short-term memory -- Consolidation of long-term memory -- The morphology of learning -- The mechanisms of mnemonic devices -- A functional model of memory -- References

Publication Date


Place of Publication

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (Ohio)

Number of Pages

39 pages

Prepared By

Personnel and Training Requirements Branch, Training Research Division, Air Force Human Resources Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base

IST Document Number


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Institute for Simulation and Training, University of Central Florida



Document Type

Research Report




Institute for Simulation and Training