Loftus and Palmer; Procedures.

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Experiment 1.

1.      There were 45 student participants in the study.

2.      They were show 7 film clips of different traffic accidents.

3.      The length of the films ranged from 5-30 seconds.

4.      The clips came from a driver safety film.

5.      After each clip they received a questionnaire and asked to give an account of the accident they had seen.

6.      One of the critical questions was ‘how fast were the cars going when they (            ) other?’

7.      Some of the verbs used were:  

Hit, Smashed, Collided, Bumped, Contacted.

8.      The estimates were recorded in miles per hour.

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Experiment 2.

1.      There were 150 student participants.

2.      They were shown a film of a multiple car crash.

3.      The film lasted less than 4 seconds.

4.      The participants were then asked a set of questions, including the critical question about speed.

5.      The participants were then divided into 3 groups, each of 50 participants.

6.      Group 1 were asked ‘how fast were the cars going when they smashed into each other?’ Group 2: when hit. Group 3: Was controll group, no questions.

7.      One week later participants were asked to return to the psychology lab, and were asked further questions about the film.

8.  The critical question asked was ‘Did you see any broken glass?’ Those who thought the car was travelling faster might expect there to have been broken glass. 

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