Memory In Everyday Life

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  • Created by: Sara
  • Created on: 30-04-11 14:11

Specification Content -

  • Eyewitness testimony and factors effecting the accuracy of EWT,including anxiety and age of witness.
  • Misleading information and the use of cognitive interviews/
  • Strategies for memory improvement.    

Research Into Eye Witness Testimony Loftus And Palmer (1974)

Research was made into the accuracy of eye witness testimony. They investigated two main areas, the effects of leading question on later memory and the effects of leading questions on eye witness accounts.

Experiment 1 -

45 students were shown a video of a car accident. They were then divided into 5 smaller groups ( 9 students). After watching the video they were given a questionnaire that included a leading question. However there was a slight difference in each of the questionnaires the verb varied between 'smashed','collided','bumped','hit', and contacted'. This was used to see if the leading questions would have an effect on the perception of speed. They found that they way a question was worded made a significant impact on the perception and recall of the incident. 

Experiment 2 -

This was made up of 150 students ( three groups of 50) the same procedure was applied, however  group 1 was asked the question containing the world 'hit', group 2 was asked the question using the word 'smashed' and group 3 was the control group that was not given a leading question. A week later the participants were asked to return, this time they were asked if they had seen any smashed glass ( there was no smashed glass within the actual footage). It was found that participants who were in the second group (smashed) were more likely to have reported this. Suggesting that their memory of the car travelling faster lead them to…


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