EWT: Anxiety

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  • EWT: Anxiety
    • Weapon focus effect
      • A weapon in a criminals hand will distract attention from other features = reduces the accuracy of identification
        • Due to anxiety that the weapon creates.
    • Johnson & Scott study
      • PPts asked to sit in a waiting room, where they could overhear an argument in the next room.
        • Condition 1) a man ran though the room carrying a pen covered in grease.
          • Low anxiety
        • Condition 2) a man ran through holding a knieve covered in blood.
          • High anxiety
        • PPts where then gave photos and aksed to identify the man.
          • Findings   high anxiety = 33% correct identification.   Low anxiety = 49% correct identification.
    • Anxiety has a positive effect on acuracy
      • High arousal = accurate memeories as emotionally important.
        • Bank robberies = enhanced recall when 58 witnesses where questioned. These wer eeither bystanders or directley involved.
          • 75% accurate recall.
            • Greatest anxiety = greater recall
    • Titanic - real world application
      • Titanic was believed that the titanic had sunk intact - despite 75% of survivers saying its broke apart as it sunk.
        • The accuracy of the survivers supports the theory that people can record accuratley even under tramatic conditions.
    • Lack of control
      • Witnesses are not normally interviewed straight after the event. Meaning reaserachers have no control over
        • Media accounts that have been seen or heard.
        • Discussions with other people over the event.
        • The effects of being interviewed by the police.
        • Extraneous variables may be the reason for the accuracy of the recall.
    • Lab studies
      • PPTS will be aware they are watchinh a filmed crime for a study
        • So may act a way they believe the experimentor would want them to
          • Damand charateristics
    • Ethical issues
      • Creating anxiety for ppts could cause some psychological harm purely for the purposes of the reasearch.


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