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Medical Dictionary

short–term memory


Medical Definition of short–term memory

  1. :  memory that involves recall of information for a relatively short time (as a few seconds) <The standard view, repeated in almost every psychology textbook, is that the ordinary limit on short-term memory is for seven or so bits of information—the length of a phone number.—Daniel Goleman, The New York Times, 11 Oct. 1994> <Short-term memory is closely linked to working memory, and the two terms are often used interchangeably. There is a difference, however: short-term memory refers to the passive storage and recall of information from the immediate past, whereas working memory refers to the active processes involved in manipulating this information.—Jonathan K. Foster, New Scientist, 3 Dec. 2011>—abbreviation STM; compare long-term memory

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