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Autobiographical Memory

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Episodic memory; Long-term memory; Personal recollection


It is memory for specific, genuine events that are personally experienced and when compiled, they form a long-lasting personal narrative. It is high in self-reference and is subject to personal interpretation [1].


Autobiographical memories tend to be more long-lasting than episodic memories because of their self-referent nature. Information and events that are related to the self are better recalled because we process them more extensively. This results in a more elaborate and deeply encoded memory trace, which generates better recall [2].

There are three different levels of autobiographical knowledge: lifetime periods, general events, and event-specific knowledge [2]. Lifetime periods, such as going to college, are contained at the highest level. The middle level holds general events, which are composite episodes that are experienced over days, weeks, or months. For example, these general events...

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Gregory, L. (2011). Autobiographical Memory. In: Goldstein, S., Naglieri, J.A. (eds) Encyclopedia of Child Behavior and Development. Springer, Boston, MA.

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