Psychology Unit 2

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Loftus And Palmer

Experiment 1

Aim: To investigate the accuracy of memory in particular how leading questions affect memory

Participants: 45 University students later divided into 5 groups

Procedure: They were shown 7 clips of car accidents orignally part of driver safety films

  • After the clips the participants were given a questionnaire; with a critical question that said 'About how fast were the cars going when they hit each other'. This was given to one of the groups
  • The other groups had the same question but 'hit' had been changed to 'contacted' 'smashed' 'collided' or 'bumped'. There was 5 experimental groups.

Results: The mean speed for all the conditions were calculated and are as follows; Smashed; 40.8, Collided: 39.9, Bumped: 38.1, Hit: 34.0, Contacted:31.8.

Smashed had the highest mean speed and Contacted had the lowest showing how leading questions affect memory.

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