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Procedural Memory

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Implicit memory; Non-declarative memory; Procedural knowledge


Procedural memory describes an implicit memory relating to learned tasks. Examples include learning to ride a bike or learning difficult athletic moves. Procedural memory usually cannot be verbally explained, as these skills are unconsciously learned. Therefore, only performance of the activity can be used to measure this type of memory. Procedural memory is a subset of implicit memory. It is contrasted with declarative memory, a subset of explicit memory. Different types of procedural memories are sometimes separately referred to as motor, perceptual, or cognitive procedural memories (Mochizuki-Kawai, 2008). Most commonly, procedural memory is measured through a task that employs more than one of these types such as Pursuit Rotor Task or Star Mirror Task (Van Gorp, Altshuler, Theberge, & Mintz, 1999).

Historical Background

Procedural memory processing occurs without any conscious acknowledgment, and has...

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Zichlin, M. (2011). Procedural Memory. In: Kreutzer, J.S., DeLuca, J., Caplan, B. (eds) Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology. Springer, New York, NY.

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