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Working Memory in Music: A Theoretical Model

William L. Berz
Music Perception: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Vol. 12, No. 3 (Spring, 1995), pp. 353-364
DOI: 10.2307/40286188
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40286188
Page Count: 12
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Working Memory in Music: A Theoretical Model
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Abstract

Many psychologists have accepted a dual memory system with separate short-and long-term storage components. More recently, the concept of working memory, where short-term memory is composed of both storage and processing segments, has been considered. Baddeley (1990) proposes a model for working memory that includes a central executive controller along with two slave systems: the phonological loop and the visuospatial sketch pad. The model allows for both storage and manipulation of information. However, this model does not seem to account adequately for musical memory (Clarke, 1993). Through a review of relevant literature, a new model is proposed in which an additional slave system is added to the Baddeley model to account for musical information. Consideration of this kind of cognitive processing is important in understanding the significant demands placed on working memory in such activities as taking music dictation, where there would be a tradeoff between storage and processing functions.

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