Loftus and Palmer OCR

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  • Created by: lfcvish
  • Created on: 26-11-11 11:21

Research into eyewitness testimony.

Aim: Aim of the study was to see the effect of leading questions on the memory of an event. Loftus and Palmer used two labatory experiments to investigate the effect of leading questions.

Experiment 1:

45 student participants shown 7 clips of car accidents. These clips were between 5 and 30 seconds long. After each clip, students were given a questionnaire asking them to give an account of the accident they had just seen, and one of these were the critical question:

How fast were the cars going when they _______ each other?

The 45 students were split into 5 groups of 9 participants each, and each had different words in the gap. This was th Independant variable. The words were:






Loftus and Palmer concluded that the more severe sounding the verb, the higher estimate for the speed.

However, this could be down to deman characteristics as participant might bias their response towards what they think the researchers want.

Experiment 2:

150 students ( different ones) saw 1 minute film that contained 4 second multiple car accidents.

They were asked to describe the accident in their own words, then answer a series of questions ultimately culminating in the most important - the critical question.

The 150 participants were split into 3…


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