Sections

Services

Information

US United States

Memory

Analysis and Comment (22)

The podcast Serial investigates the murder of 18-year-old American student Hae Min Lee 15 years ago. LukaTDB/Shutterstock

Serial: murder, mystery and the science of memory

Can you recall what you were doing last Wednesday between 2.15pm and 2.36pm? Where were you? What did you see? Who did you talk to? How well do you remember those 21 minutes? Now try to recall Wednesday…
Research into gene regulation can treat illness, grow food and understand the brain. WildBear

Epigenetic code cracker: why skin cells are skin cells and not neurons

The Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science – awarded at Parliament House in Canberra tonight – recognise excellence in science and science teaching. This year, we asked four prizewinners to reflect on their…
What will you remember? Test via Syda Productions/Shutterstock

How tests and wrong answers help us remember what we learn

Teachers give tests to find out what their students know. But tests do a lot more than that and can have a powerful effect on what a student remembers. In a typical research study looking at the links…
The hippocampus has been object of scrutiny since the days of Gray’s Anatomy.

Explainer: what happens in the hippocampus?

This year’s Nobel Prize in medicine recognises work on “cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain.” Those cells are found in the hippocampus. It is just one tiny part of the brain, but this…
Want more working memory? Then you need to expand your brain. Flickr/Elena Gatti

Brain size matters when it comes to remembering

Before we had mobile phones, people had to use their own memory to store long phone numbers (or write them down). But getting those numbers into long-term memory could be a real pain. People had to write…
Our brains are reorganising even when we don’t physically mimic movements. conmike12

We watch and learn the moves – even when we’re immobile

It may seem somewhat intuitive, but learning through observation is one of the most potent ways humans learn a new skill. We see someone moving in a certain way and we copy it. But what happens when the…
Are there things you’d rather not remember? Megyarsh

Going, going, gone: the where and why of memory erasure

If you could erase your memories, which ones would you choose? As a neuroscientist, one of my raisons d’etre is to achieve, in a way, some form of memory erasure, especially for individuals that suffer…
“Wait a minute. I’ve been here before …” PhotoJonny/Flickr

Explainer: what is déjà vu and why does it happen?

Have you ever experienced a sudden feeling of familiarity while in a completely new place? Or the feeling you’ve had the exact same conversation with someone before? This feeling of familiarity is, of…
How do you remember where you’ve been if you don’t have a brain? Tanya Latty

The brainless slime mould that remembers where it’s been

We humans use our large brains to make and store maps of our environment; maps we then use everyday for getting around and for recalling where we’ve been. But we are nothing special – many other animals…
Getting rid of negative memories is increasingly within our grasp. taylor.a

Remembering to forget: how to erase unwanted memories

Memories influence our behaviour for better or worse. A traumatic incident, experienced once, can darken our lives for ever more. Drug or alcohol addiction – driven by remembered rewards – can render the…
We all know the past disappears. FotoRita [Allstar maniac]

Explainer: what is forgetting?

If memory can be defined as “a past that becomes a part of me”, can forgetting be defined as “a past that is no longer a part of me”? Smokers who have abstained for years may not consciously be able to…
Did you forget to lock the door, or just forget to pay proper attention? jef safi \ 'pictosophizing

Explainer: what is memory?

Memory is difficult to define without being circular. People often define memory as “something you can remember”. But we cannot deny the existence of a memory when there is no recollection. Sigmund Freud…
Augmentation technologies will challenge what it means to be human. WebWizard

Augmentation technologies are here but are people listening?

“And, for an instant, she stared directly into those soft blue eyes and knew, with an instinctive mammalian certainty, that the exceedingly rich were no longer even remotely human.” William Gibson, Count…
Brain scan technology is finding that some parts of the brain respond more strongly to colour than others. Flickr/dpi

Perceiving colour involves more than meets the eye

For more than 200 years, scientists have known the range of colours we can see means there must be three different types of light-responsive cells in our eyes. These three types of cell, along with the…
Trouble holding on to your memories? A bad night’s kip might be to blame. planetchopstick/Flickr

To sleep, perchance to learn

So here it is, another morning. Another day of yawns. Another day of … oh … what was I saying? We all know that if you don’t get a good night’s sleep, you don’t function properly during the day. It could…

Columnists (1)

Research and News (7)

Research Briefs (24)

Snoozing improves waking memory

Sleep helps lock in visual learning, according to new research from Brown University. The study observed the brain activity…

Caffeine gives bees the buzz too

Honeybees may have an advantage over other pollinators – caffeine improves performance. The findings, from Newcastle University…

Don’t forget Facebook

Chatty updates on Facebook are easier to remember than carefully-worded sentences. Researchers from the University of Warwick…

Synchronised brain waves hold visual memory

The brain encodes short-term visual memory with in-sync electrical neural oscillations. Neuroscientists have observed how…

Omega-3 may improve brain function

Healthy young adults could boost their cognitive function and working memory by increasing their intake of omega-3 fatty…