Schemas (Psychology)

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  • Knowledge structures of an event or concept, based on previous perceptions of that event or concept. Schemas have direct effects on memory performance. While schema-consistent information is encoded and remembered more easily, it is also the case that people tend to remember schema-inconsistent information more easily. If information violates an existing schema, more processing time is necessary to process that information, which in turn leads to deeper processing and easier retrieval of that information. Schemas can even lead people to recall information that was not initially presented. A study by Brewer and Treyens (1982) tested people's memories for the content of a professor's office. Nine out of 30 participants in the study recalled that books were present in the office, although there were none, ...

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