Factors affecting EWT: Misleading information

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  • Created by: Gottowork
  • Created on: 10-05-16 10:03
What is eye-witness testimony?
The ability of people to remember the details of events that they have observed
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What are the factors that can affect the accuracy of EWT?
Misleading information, leading questions, and anxiety
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What is a leading question?
A question which is worded in such a way that it suggests a certain answer
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Who carried out a study into leading questions?
Loftus and Palmer
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What did Loftus and Palmer arrange for participants to do?
Watch films clips of car accidents then ask them questions, the 'critical' one asking how fast the cars were going when they hit. 5 verbs - contacted, hit, bumped, collided, smashed
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What were the findings of Loftus and Palmer's study?
When the mean estimated speed was calculated for each group, found that 'contacted' resulted in 31.8mph, 'smashed' resulted in 40.5mph. Leading question biased the EW recall
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When I pose the question 'Why do leading questions affect EWT?', what two explanations spring to mind?
Response-bias explanation - wording has no real effect on someone's memories, just influences how they decide to answer. Substitution explanation - wording actually does change memory - 'smashed' more likely to report broken glass
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What is post-event discussion?
Witnesses discuss what they have seen with co-witnesses or other people, may contaminate each-other's EWT
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Who studied post-event discussion?
Fiona Gabbert et al.
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What procedure did Fiona Gabbert et al. carry out?
Participants in pairs watching different P.O.V in a video of the same crime. Then discussion before individual recall
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What were the findings of the study on post-event discussion?
71% mistakenly recalled aspects of the events that they didn't see, but had picked up in discussion. 0% in control group, so witnesses often go along with each-other to win social approval (memory conformity)
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How does research into misleading information have important practical applications in real life?
Consequences of EWT can be serious in real life, e.g. Loftus says police officers need to be careful about phrasing their questions. Difference to the lives of real people - improving legal system
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What do I mean when I say that the tasks were artificial?
E.g. Loftus and Palmer - film clips, different from witnessing real accident as lack stress. Tell s little about how leading questions affect EWT in real life accidents/crimes
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What could happen in lab studies of EWT which could affect the validity?
Someone could answer as a result of demand characteristics - don't want to let researcher down so guess the answer if they don't know
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Card 2

Front

What are the factors that can affect the accuracy of EWT?

Back

Misleading information, leading questions, and anxiety

Card 3

Front

What is a leading question?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

Who carried out a study into leading questions?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What did Loftus and Palmer arrange for participants to do?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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