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INTRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT. Working or operative memory is considered to be a distinctive element of executive functioning. Nowadays, thanks to neuroimaging studies, it is known that the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex plays a crucial role in working memory. It has been observed that during the intervals when information is being retained, intense and persistent activity is going on in the region, as shown by the delayed response times. Working memory is fundamental for the analysis and synthesis of information, the retention of data needed to perform a particular mental process, carrying out priming (impression in memory of something that has been experienced, such as words, objects or events, for example), carrying out pre-functional tutoring activities and post-functional monitoring.
CONCLUSIONS. Disorders affecting the fundamental mechanisms of working memory will give rise to a dysfunction that will exert an influence on innumerable formal academic learning processes such as difficulty in focusing attention, difficulty in inhibiting irrelevant stimuli, difficulty in recognising priority patterns, inability to recognise hierarchies and the meaning of stimuli (analysis and synthesis), problems in establishing an intention, and difficulty in recognising and selecting the goals that are best suited to solving a problem. It will also involve the impossibility to establish a plan to achieve goals, inability to analyse the activities required to accomplish an objective and difficulties in carrying out a plan, since it becomes impossible to monitor or modify the task to fit the original plans.
CodingImmediate memoryLearning disorderLong-term memoryRetrievalShort-term memoryStorageWorking memory