= List of memory biases =
In psychology 'and' cognitive science, a memory bias is a cognitive
bias that either enhances or impairs the recall of a memory (either
the chances that the memory will be recalled at all, or the amount of
time it takes for it to be recalled, or both), or that alters the
content of a reported memory. There are many different types of memory
* Choice-supportive bias: remembering chosen options as having been
better than rejected options (Mather, Shafir & Johnson, 2000)
* Change bias: after an investment of effort in producing change,
remembering one's past performance as more difficult than it actually
* Childhood amnesia: the retention of few memories from before the age
* Conservatism or Regressive Bias: tendency to remember high values
and high likelihoods/probabilities/frequencies lower than they
actually were and low ones higher than they actually were. Based on
the evidence, memories are not extreme enough.
* Consistency bias: incorrectly remembering one's past attitudes and
behaviour as resembling present attitudes and behaviour.
* Context effect: that cognition and memory are dependent on context,
such that out-of-context memories are more difficult to retrieve than
in-context memories (e.g., recall time and accuracy for a work-related
memory will be lower at home, and vice versa).
* Cross-race effect: the tendency for people of one race to have
difficulty identifying members of a race other than their own.
* Cryptomnesia: a form of 'misattribution' where a memory is mistaken
for imagination, because there is no subjective experience of it being
* Egocentric bias: recalling the past in a self-serving manner, e.g.,
remembering one's exam grades as being better than they were, or
remembering a caught fish as bigger than it really was.
* Fading affect bias: a bias in which the emotion associated with
unpleasant memories fades more quickly than the emotion associated
with positive events.
*Gender differences in eyewitness memory: the tendency for a witness
to remember more details about someone of the same gender.
* Generation effect (Self-generation effect): that self-generated
information is remembered best. For instance, people are better able
to recall memories of statements that they have generated than similar
statements generated by others.
* Google effect: the tendency to forget information that can be easily
* Hindsight bias: the inclination to see past events as being
predictable; also called the "I-knew-it-all-along" effect.
* Humor effect: that humorous items are more easily remembered than
non-humorous ones, which might be explained by the distinctiveness of
humor, the increased cognitive processing time to understand the
humor, or the emotional arousal caused by the humor.
* Illusion-of-truth effect: that people are more likely to identify as
true statements those they have previously heard (even if they cannot
consciously remember having heard them), regardless of the actual
validity of the statement. In other words, a person is more likely to
believe a familiar statement than an unfamiliar one.
* Illusory correlation: inaccurately seeing a relationship between two
events related by coincidence.
* Lag effect: see spacing effect.
* Leveling and Sharpening: memory distortions introduced by the loss
of details in a recollection over time, often concurrent with
sharpening or selective recollection of certain details that take on
exaggerated significance in relation to the details or aspects of the
experience lost through leveling. Both biases may be reinforced over
time, and by repeated recollection or re-telling of a memory.
* Levels-of-processing effect: that different methods of encoding
information into memory have different levels of effectiveness (Craik
& Lockhart, 1972).
* List-length effect: a smaller percentage of items are remembered in
a longer list, but as the length of the list increases, the absolute
number of items remembered increases as well.
* Misinformation effect: that misinformation affects people's reports
of their own memory.
* Misattribution of memory: when information is retained in memory but
the source of the memory is forgotten. One of Schacter's (1999) Seven
Sins of Memory, Misattribution was divided into Source Confusion,
Cryptomnesia and False Recall/False Recognition.
* Memory inhibition: that being shown some items from a list makes it
harder to retrieve the other items (e.g., Slamecka, 1968).
* Modality effect: that memory recall is higher for the last items of
a list when the list items were received via speech than when they
were received via writing.
* Mood congruent memory bias: the improved recall of information
congruent with one's current mood.
* Next-in-line effect: that a person in a group has diminished recall
for the words of others who spoke immediately before or after this
* Peak-end effect: that people seem to perceive not the sum of an
experience but the average of how it was at its peak (e.g. pleasant or
unpleasant) and how it ended.
* Persistence: the unwanted recurrence of memories of a traumatic
* Picture superiority effect: that concepts are much more likely to be
remembered experientially if they are presented in picture form than
if they are presented in word form.
* Placement bias: tendency to remember ourselves to be better than
others at tasks at which we rate ourselves above average (also
Illusory superiority or Better-than-average effect) and tendency to
remember ourselves to be worse than others at tasks at which we rate
ourselves below average (also Worse-than-average effect).
* Positivity effect: that older adults favor positive over negative
information in their memories.
* Primacy effect, Recency effect & Serial position effect: that
items near the end of a list are the easiest to recall, followed by
the items at the beginning of a list; items in the middle are the
least likely to be remembered.
* Processing difficulty effect.
* Reminiscence bump: the recalling of more personal events from
adolescence and early adulthood than personal events from other
lifetime periods (Rubin, Wetzler & Nebes, 1986; Rubin, Rahhal
& Poon, 1998).
* Rosy retrospection: the remembering of the past as having been
better than it really was.
* Self-reference effect: the phenomena that memories encoded with
relation to the self are better recalled than similar information
* Self-serving bias: perceiving oneself responsible for desirable
outcomes but not responsible for undesirable ones.
* Source Confusion: misattributing the source of a memory, e.g.
misremembering that one saw an event personally when actually it was
seen on television.
* Spacing effect: that information is better recalled if exposure to
it is repeated over a longer span of time.
* Stereotypical bias: memory distorted towards stereotypes (e.g.
racial or gender), e.g. "black-sounding" names being misremembered as
names of criminals.
* Suffix effect: the weakening of the recency effect in the case that
an item is appended to the list that the subject is 'not' required to
recall (Morton, Crowder & Prussin, 1971).
* Suggestibility: a form of misattribution where ideas suggested by a
questioner are mistaken for memory.
* Subadditivity effect: the tendency to estimate that the likelihood
of a remembered event is less than the sum of its (more than two)
mutually exclusive components.
* Telescoping effect: the tendency to displace recent events backward
in time and remote events forward in time, so that recent events
appear more remote, and remote events, more recent.
* Testing effect: that frequent testing of material that has been
committed to memory improves memory recall.
* Tip of the tongue: when a subject is able to recall parts of an
item, or related information, but is frustratingly unable to recall
the whole item. This is thought to be an instance of "blocking" where
multiple similar memories are being recalled and interfere with each
* Verbatim effect: that the "gist" of what someone has said is better
remembered than the verbatim wording (Poppenk, Walia, Joanisse,
Danckert, & Köhler, 2006).
* Von Restorff effect: that an item that sticks out is more likely to
be remembered than other items (von Restorff, 1933).
* Zeigarnik effect: that uncompleted or interrupted tasks are
remembered better than completed ones.
*Heuristics in judgment and decision making
*Index of public relations-related articles
*List of biases in judgment and decision making
*List of common misconceptions
*List of fallacies