Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a Psychology Class.
Professor: OK. If I ask about the earliest thing you can remember, I will bet for most of you, your earliest memory would be from about age 3, right? Well, that’s true for most adults. We can’t remember anything that happened before the age of 3. And this phenomenon is so widespread and well-documented. It has a name. It’s called childhood amnesia and was first documented in 1893.
As I said, this phenomenon refers to adults not being able to remember childhood incidents. It’s not children trying to remember events from last month or last year. Of course it follows that if you can’t remember an incident as a child, you probably won’t remember it as an adult. OK. So … why is this? What are the reasons for childhood amnesia?
Well, once a popular explanation was that childhood memories are repressed... uh, the memories are disturbing so that as adults we keep them buried. And so we can’t recall them and this is based on…well it’s not based on, on, on… the kind of solid research and lab testing I want to talk about today. So let’s put that explanation aside and concentrate on just two. OK?
It could be that as children we do form memories of things prior to age of 3, but forget them as we grow older. That’s one explanation. Another possibility is that children younger than 3 lack some cognitive capacity for memory. And that idea, that children are unable to form memories, that’s been the dominant belief in psychology for the past 100 years.
And this idea is very much tied two things, the theories of Jean Piaget and also to language development in children. So Piaget’s theory of cognitive development – Piaget suggested that because they don’t have language, children younger than 18-24 months leave in the here and now. That is, they lack the means to symbolically represent objects, and events that are not physically present. Everybody get that? Piaget proposed that young children don’t have a way to represent things that aren’t right in front of them. That’s what language does, right? Words represent things, ideas.
Once language starts to develop from about age 2, they do have a system for symbolic representation and can talk about things which are not in their immediate environment including the past. Of course he didn’t claim that infants don’t have any sort of memory, it is acknowledged that they can recognize some stimuli, like faces. And for many years this model was very much in favor in psychology, even though memory tests were never performed on young children.
Well, finally in the 1980s, a study was done. And this study showed that very young children under the age of 2 do have the capacity for recall. Now if the children can’t talk, how was recall tested? Well, that is a good question, since the capacity for recall has always been linked with the ability to talk.
So the researcher set up an experiment using imitation-based tasks. Adults used props, uh, toys or other objects to demonstrate an action that had 2 steps. The children were asked to imitate the steps immediately and then again after delays of one or more months, and even after a delay, the children could…could recall or replicate the action, the objects used, the steps involved and the order of the steps, even children as young as 9 months!
Now, tests showed that there was a faster rate of forgetting among the youngest children, but most importantly, it showed that the development of recall did not depend on language development. And that was an importance finding. I guess I should add that the findings: Don’t say that there was no connection between the development of language and memory. There are some evidence that being able to talk about an event does lead to having a stronger memory of that event. But that does not seem the real issue here.
So, back to our question about the cause of childhood amnesia. Well, there is something called the rate of forgetting. And childhood amnesia may reflect a high rate of forgetting; in other words, children under the age of 3 do form memories and do so without language. But they forget the memories at a fast rate, probably faster than adults do. Researchers have set a standard….sort of an expected rate of forgetting, but that expected rate was set based on tests done on the adults. So what is the rate of forgetting for children under the age of 3? We expect it to be high, but the tests to prove this really haven’t been done yet.
Question 1 of 6
What is the main purpose of the lecture?
A. To discuss possible explanations for childhood amnesia.
B. To describe key features of childhood amnesia.
C. To explain methods of testing memory in children of different ages.
D. To discuss why the ability recall memories diminishes as a person ages.
Question 2 of 6
Why does the professor ask student about their earliest memories?
A. To help students relate to the topic she is about to discuss.
B. To establish that people vary in the time of their earliest memory.
C. To introduce the connection between language and memory.
D. To point out a common thing in the earliest memories of most people.
Question 3 of 6
What does the professor imply about some of the explanations for childhood amnesia that she describes?
A. They can never be proved or disproved.
B. They were formed without proper evidence.
C. They explain only certain types of childhood amnesia.
D. They are contradicted by her own research.
Question4 of 6
The professor mentions some commonly held explanations for childhood amnesia.Indicate whether each of the following is one of the explanations she mentions.Click in the correct box for each phrase.This item is worth 2 points. Yes/No. A.YesB.No
(1).Early memories are repressed
(2).Young children have few experiences to remember
(3).Young children are unable to form memories.
(4).Children lose memories at a faster rate than adults
(5).Young children do not make an effort to remember events
Question 5 of 6
How was recall tested in children without language ability?
A. By recording children 's responses to familiar faces.
B. By observing children 's reaction to a repeated series of actions.
C. By having children imitate each other 's actions.
D. By having children imitate an ordered sequence of actions.
Question 6 of 6
The professor mention a study in the 1980s that tested memory in children under age 3 . What did the researchers conclude from this study?
A. Young children do not develop the capacity for recall until after age 3
B. Piaget 's theory linking language development to memory was incorrect
C. Young children typically remember events for about nine months
D. The formation of memories is dependent upon language development
Question 1 of 6
题目解析：教授在 lecture 的一开头引入了一个新的概念 childhood amnesia，并在接下来的讲座中提出了集中可能的解释。所以纵观全文，可以得到讲座的主旨是A答案。
Question2 of 6
Question 3 of 6
题目解析：教授提到not based on, on, on… the kind of solid research，表明教授本人觉得这个解释缺乏适当的证据来支撑理论，所以B选项正确。
Question 4 of 6
题目解析：教授提到的对于childhood amnesia 现象的解释，一共包括三种不同的解释：once a popular explanation was that child memories are always repressed and memories are disturbing so that is adults we keep them in barricade，小孩子的记忆被抑制了，即(1)选项正确;children we do form memories of things prior to age of 3, but forget as we get grew older, let’s one explanation，小孩子能和成人一样进行记忆，但是会很快忘记，即(4)选项正确;Another possibility is that children younger than 3 lack some cognitive capacity for memory，小孩子缺乏 对于记忆的认知，即(3)选项正确。(2)、(5) 选项在听力材料中均没有提及。
Question 5 of 6
题目解析：教授提到 the researcher set up an experiment using imitation based texts，并进一步解释 实际的做法是成人演示一套有两步的动作，然后要求小孩子在当下及一段时间后分别模仿出 这套动作来。从这些信息中可以看到本题的答案选 D。
Question 6 of 6
题目解析：教授提到在八十年代做的那项研究的结果是 study show that very young children under age of 2 do have capacity for recall，而 Piaget 认为因为小孩子不会言语所以没有办法创造记 忆。所以说研究的结果证明了Piaget 的这项理论是错误的，所以答案为 B。