Loftus and Palmer Revision Notes
Eye witness testimony has often been wrong. E.Loftus investigated how information before an event asking "leading questions" can affect our memories and how our memories are sketch pads not video cameras.
Experiment 1 - Labatory Experiment
Participants: 45 Students
Procedure: Film clips of car crashes. After each clip shown, students were asked: an account of what happened, questions and a critical question.
The critical question: "About how fast were the cars going when they _____ (<-- Smashed, collided, bumped, hit, contacted)? - There were 5 conditions in the experiment and participants were asked this question with one of the chosen words.
Results: See bar chart in "Cognitive Psychology Handbook"
Condition: Critical words influenced the persons decision by using a "leading question".
Independant Variables: Verbs used in question: Smashed, Hit, Collided, Bumped, Contacted
Dependant Variables: Estimate of speed
Controls: Same films shown to each participant, quesions all identical except for independant variable, critical question embedded in other questions to disguise it, random placement of critical question with in the other questions