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Is technology slowly taking away our ability to remember?

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CLAYTON, MO (KPLR) - Could your smart phone be making you not so smart? Technology plays a major role in our everyday lives, and some are beginning to think it’s making us lose critical brain function.

When was the last time you memorized a phone number? Or grabbed a smart phone to answer somebody's trivia question?

A growing body of research suggest that technology is affecting our memories, especially the short-term or working memory.

Dr. Jason Finley, an assistant professor of psychology at Fontbonne University, says, “We are relying more and more on our devices for detailed factual information, looking up dates, addresses, email addresses what we call semantic memory. yet we are still using our own memory for personal experiences.”

To test out just how much technology is keeping us from exercising our brain, Dr. Finley plans to conduct his own research thanks to a grant to Fontbonne University from the National Endowment for The Humanities.

Several courses are being developed to let students explore their own memories.

“Students are going to be able to wear a camera to test their memory from a visit to the Missouri History Museum to compare what they remember to what the camera shows,” Finley said.

New research has also found that taking photos as many of us do in this smartphone obsessed culture, hampers our ability to remember what we are capturing on camera.