Serial Position Curve

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  • A U-shaped curve depicting memory for list items. Generally, items presented at the beginning and end of the list are remembered better than items in the middle. Increased recall of early items is referred to as the primacy effect. As there is greater opportunity to rehearse early items, there is greater likelihood that early items will be committed to memory and thus remembered better. Increased recall of late items is referred to as the recency effect. As recently presented items are still present in auditory short-term memory, recall of such items is improved.

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