How does memory work?


In I&S class we have been working on Psychology, how we remember things and a lot more.

I have read an article of how memory works and how our brain remembers things and makes it long term memory or just stays short term memory and you eventually forget.
In the article, there was lots of new vocabulary for me and I will write down the key new vocabulary that I have learned in this article.

The new vocabulary

Neurons are nerve cells located throughout the whole nervous system and the central nervous system which communicate through synaptic connections.
Synaptic connections are structures that send specific impulses and signals in between neurons inside the nervous system when a certain kind of neurotransmitters allow the impulse to pass further through the neurons nervous system.
Neurotransmitters are chemicals that work to bring a certain signal or impulse from neuron to neuron in a synapse
Long-term Potentiation is when a certain signal comes back many times and the synapses become stronger because the brain created a ‘strengthened synaptic contact which sort of puts the thing on your contact list which you will remember if you keep it strong. which also makes is easier to communicate with that specific person then.
Consolidated means that something becomes more stronger or more solid and firm than it was before.


Memory inside the brain is not like a cabinet that all the things you experience and witness get stored in and when you need to use this information later on, you can just recall it easily and then re-use it. It is not sure how the brain works but many scientists predict that the neurons, neurotransmitters and synaptic connections make us remember things in our long-term potentiation. The way we get things to our long term memory is by recalling it many times. This makes this same signal travel through your neurons, and synapses often which makes it easier for that same impulse to travel the same way every time and it consolidates. Because of this it becomes a long-term potentiation and comes in your long term memory.


Nature vs Nurture

Nature vs Nurture

Nature vs Nurture us a debate that has been going on for a long time in Psychology. Children can have specific things from their parents and ancestors, but also have to develop many things in their childhood and further life.
My definition of nature in this case of Psychology is when a child has a certain, physical characteristic, ability, behaviour, like or dislike that they naturally have or got from their parents or that they have got in theirselves when they were born and that not has to do anything of the way of the child was being raised.
My definition of nurture is when A child has a physical characteristic, ability, behaviour, like or dislike that they got when they were raised or have practiced somewhere during their life.

The Nature vs nurture debate is about whether certain things or behaviours that children have are nature or just nurture. Psychological studies conducted by Heinz show that children from specific genders which in this case monkeys, many times like toys that are typically for their gender, this was clear because most of the female monkeys got the girly and pink toys while the boys got the boy toys like trucks and helicopters. This clearly shows that in most cases, it is in our genes which kind of toys and things we like to have and play with which clearly shows we do these things and like those things from our nature.
Also a Psychological experiment conducted by Cambridge University shows that adults and parents give the children toys according to their gender because if they heard a specific child was a boy, they would give the kid boy toys and with girls the same. But the thing that they did was that they switched some boys and girls around and said that it was a girl while it was a boy and the same for the opposite gender. The adults got toys for boys when they thought it was a boy and the same for when they thought the baby was a girl. In some cases the children clearly didn’t like the other toys which is partially nature but as you can see, the parents also stereotype what the babies like by their gender which is clearly a part of nurture.

Gapminder development post


In humanities our unit is development and we just started working with a program called Gapminder. 


Population growth and GDP per capita

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I tested this using the countries Mexico and Japan. The population growth went down in both countries, and at the same time in those countries the GDP per  capita went up. You can see this on the Gapminder screenshot I made. I think from these results we can see, how lower the population growth is, how larger the GDP per capita is in countries. This is also the main interrelation with these two development indicators. This might be because when people have more money, they want to keep it and not spend  it all on having many children. Also, it might be because they don’t need many children to maybe help them. This then might be the cause of getting a smaller population growth for countries with a higher average of GDP per capita. 



Child mortality and children per woman(fertility rate).

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I think, here again, we can clearly see that with these two countries and other countries on the world. First the countries had many children and also had a pretty high child mortality. But though time we can see that the countries I selected are getting less children and also there is a way lower child mortality. People might think they don’t need as many children because less of them die and otherwise they get too many. So again, this relation is clear to see with these countries the interrelation is clear to see, the lower the child mortality, the lower the number of children per woman is.  But finally we can still see that Mexico is still getting less children a bit slower but it has a bit more steady pace of getting towards the most developed countries.



Literacy rate and life expectancy


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For this one, there was no data of Japan, so here I used China instead.

I think here it is clear that when the literacy rate goes up, the life expectancy goes up too. I think because of this, these indicators of development are probably again interrelated. This might be that more people get good education, they can have more specialized people and doctors, and because of that, people can have longer lives in these countries because it is easier to stay healthy for people. This also finally  might helps countries develop a bit more.



Birth rate and HDI(Human Development Index)

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With these indicators I went switched back China to Japan and kept Mexico. I think from this screenshot of Gapminder we can see that between these two indicators, the interrelation is not very strong because the number of birth changes less quickly than the HDI of the two countries which changes relatively quickly. But I think It is still clear to see that in general, the birth rate goes down when the HDI goes up in these and other countries. We can also see that when countries get more developed, the number of children that people get goes down slightly. We could also see this and interrelate this a bit in the Gapminer chart for the cild mortality and the number of children women get.



From all these tests, I can see that most of these indicators that I decided to pair up were mostly all clearly interrelated. Also I think it is interesting that most of these indicators are pretty different like GDP per capita and population growth, but still Gapminder shows that in some way, they do interrelate each other. Also we can see that Mexico might be a bit behind with development, but they are catching up with the more developed countries.