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Question: 2.5 According to the information-processing theory, explain the age-related differences in memory capacity between older and younger people. Provide TWO (2) examples to illustrate these differences.
According to the information processing theory, memory takes place in three stages - encoding, storage, and retrieval. As people age, the efficiency of these processes can change, leading to age-related differences in memory capacity. 1. Speed of Processing: Younger people tend to process information faster than older adults. This might be due to the more efficient functioning of their cognitive processes or healthier neuronal connectivity. For example, in a situation where quick memory recall is required such as a fast-paced quiz show, a younger person might outperform an older individual, not necessarily due to better knowledge, but a more efficient information retrieval system. 2. Working Memory: Working memory, a subsystem of short-term memory where information is temporarily held and manipulated, tends to decline as people age. It has a limited capacity and becomes less efficient over time. For instance, a younger person might find it easier to remember and manipulate a series of numbers or directions in their head as compared to an older individual. However, it's important to note that while these phenomena are generally observed, they don't apply to everyone uniformly. Other factors such as individual health, education, lifestyle and more, can influence how a person's memory performance changes over time. Also, this does not mean that older adults can't learn or recall information, but that they might do so differently than younger individuals. It's also worth mentioning that with age can come improved semantic memory and emotional regulation, which can contribute positively to the recall of information.
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