|Born||20 October 1886|
|Died||30 September 1969 (age 82)|
|Institutions||University of Cambridge|
|Known for||memory schema (psychology)|
|Notable awards||Fellow of the Royal Society|
Sir Frederic Charles Bartlett FRS (20 October 1886 – 30 September 1969) was a British psychologist and the first professor of experimental psychology at the University of Cambridge. He was one of the forerunners of cognitive psychology. However, while Bartlett considered his own work on cognitive psychology, especially remembering, to be a study in social psychology more recent developments have individualised his concepts.
One study involved the cognitive and social processes of remembering. He would recite short fables which comprised a sequence of events which were subtly illogical, then ask subjects to recall as much of it as possible. Most people had difficulty recalling the story exactly, especially where the elements failed to fit into their own schemata.
Bartlett studied moral science at St John's College, Cambridge as an undergraduate before joining the staff of the then Cambridge Psychological Laboratory. He took up his chair in 1931 and held it until his retirement in 1951. With Kenneth Craik he was responsible for setting up the Medical Research Council's Applied Psychology Research Unit (APU) at Cambridge in 1944, becoming Director of the unit after Craik's early death in 1945.
He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1932 (a rare distinction for a psychologist), and knighted in 1948 for services to the Royal Air Force, on the basis of his wartime work in applied psychology. He was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1958.
One of his most famous studies was on the cognitive and social processes of remembering. He retrieved a series of short fables (the best known was the Native American fable called The War of the Ghosts), each of which comprised a sequence of events which were ostensibly logical but subtly illogical, and there were several discreet non-sequiturs. He would recite this story to subjects, then later (sometimes much later) ask them to recall as much of it as possible. He discovered that most people found it extremely difficult to recall the story exactly, even after repeated readings, and hypothesised that, where the elements of the story failed to fit into the schemata of the listener, these elements were omitted from the recollection, or transformed into more familiar forms.
In 1948 Bartlett was invited to deliver the Royal Institution Christmas Lecture on The Mind at Work and Play.
- Exercises in logic (Clive, London, 1922)
- Psychology and primitive culture (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1923)
- Psychology and the soldier (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1927)
- Remembering (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1932)
- The problem of noise (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1934)
- Political propaganda (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1940)
- Religion as experience, belief, action (Cumberledge, London, 1950)
- The mind at work and play (Allen and Unwin, London, 1951)
- Thinking (Allen and Unwin, 1958)
- Broadbent, D. E. (1970). "Frederic Bartlett. 1886-1969". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society 16: 1–13. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1970.0001. PMID 11615473.
- *"Frederic Charles Bartlett Kt., C.B.E., M. A. Cantab., F.R.S". Lancet 2 (7625): 855–856. 1969. PMID 4186318.
- Oldfield, R. C. (1972). "Frederic Charles Bartlett: 1886-1969". The American journal of psychology 85 (1): 133–140. PMID 4553309.
- "OBITUARY NOTICES". BMJ 4 (5676): 175–179. 1969. doi:10.1136/bmj.4.5676.175. PMC 1629959. PMID 4898567.
- Dalgleish, Tim. "The thinking person’s emotion theorist: A comment on Bartlett’s ‘Feeling, imaging, and thinking’". British Journal of Psychology. British Journal of Psychology. Retrieved 2010-07-10.
- "Book of Members, 1780-2010: Chapter B". American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 19 May 2011.
- "War of the Ghosts". Penta.ufrgs.br. Retrieved 2010-07-10.
- http://www.aber.ac.uk/media/Modules/MC10220/bartlett.html[dead link]
- Johnston, E. B. (2001). "The repeated reproduction of Bartlett's Remembering". History of Psychology 4 (4): 341–366. doi:10.1037/1093-4510.4.4.341. PMID 11763888.
|Wikisource has original works written by or about:
- Sir Frederic Bartlett Archive
- History of the Applied Psychology Unit
- Full text of The War of the Ghosts
- Bartlett in the digital age
- Complete bibliography