Most episodes of absent-mindedness forgetting where you left something or wondering why you just entered aroom-are caused by a simple lack of attention,says Schacter. “You’re supposed to remember something, butyou haven’t encoded it deeply.”
Encoding, Schacter explains, is a special way of paying attention to an event that has a major impact on recalling it later. Failure to encode properly can create annoying situations. If you put your mobile phonein a pocket, for example, and don’t pay attention to what you did because you’re involved in a conversation, you’ll probably forget that the phone is in the jacket now hanging in you wardrobe (衣柜). “Your memory itself isn’t failing you,” says Schacter. “Rather, you didn’t give your memory system the information it needed.”
Lack of interest can also lead to absent-mindedness. “A man who can recite sports statistics from 30 years ago,” says Zelinski, “may not remember to drop a letter in the mailbox.” Women have slightly better memories than men, possibly because they pay more attention to their environment, and memory relies on justthat.
Visual cues can help prevent absent-mindedness, says Schacter. “But be sure the cue is clear and available,” he cautions. If you want to remember to take a medication (药物) with lunch, put the pill bottle on the kitchen table—don’t leave it in the medicine chest and write yourself a note that you keep in a pocket.
Another common episode of absent-mindedness: walking into a room and wondering why you’re there. Most likely, you were thinking about something else. “Everyone does this from time to time,” says Zelinski. The best thing to do is to return to where you were before entering the room, and you’ll likely remember.
Choose correct answers to the question:
1. Why does the author think that encoding properly is very important?
A. It helps us understand our memory system better.
B. It enables us to recall something form our memory.
C. It expands our memory capacity considerably.
D. It slows down the process of losing our memory.
2. One possible reason why women have better memories than men is that ________.
A. they have a wider range of interests
B. they are more reliant on the environment
C. they have an unusual power of focusing their attention
D. they are more interested in what’s happening around them
3. A note in the pocket can hardly serve as a reminder because ________.
A. it will easily get lost
B. it’s not clear enough for you to read
C. it’s out of your sight
D. it might get mixed up with other things
4. What do we learn from the last paragraph?
A. If we focus our attention on one thing, we might forget another.
B. Memory depends to a certain extent on the environment.
C. Repetition helps improve our memory.
D. If we keep forgetting things, we’d better return to where we were.
5. What is the passage mainly about?
A. The process of gradual memory loss.
B. The causes of absent-mindedness.
C. The impact of the environment on memory.
D. A way if encoding and recalling.
1.B 2.D 3.C 4.A 5.B
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