Essay on Facial Recognition Lab

Essay on Facial Recognition Lab

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1. The Facial Recognition Lab was performed in order to determine whether or not the familiarity effect can be used to influence an individual’s memory. In the lab, ten Most Wanted faces were shown and the subject was asked to study them for an indefinite amount of time. Once they clicked “Next”, they were shown 20 faces in random order, ten of which were from the list they had just studied and ten were new faces. The subject was asked to determine which were new and which were Most Wanted. In theory this should be a relatively easy task, because the subject does not necessarily need to remember that a face was on the previous list, merely that they had seen it before. That it was familiar to them. Thus, on the second day they were shown 20 faces again. If the subject was randomly assigned into the control group, then they saw the Most Wanted faces mixed in with ten new faces. Otherwise they were assigned into the false memory group and were shown the exact same 20 faces they had seen the previous day. The subjects are given a “discrimination index” based on their level of accuracy. The hypothesis is that the control group will perform significantly better (i.e. have a higher discrimination index) than the members of the false memory group. This is because the control group still merely has to recognize a face. Granted they aren’t aware of which group they are in, but to the false memory group, all of the faces will have some degree of familiarity. They must go a step further and actually reconstruct which faces were on the Most Wanted list and which were not.
2. The independent variables in this experiment are the time and the foils presented to the subject. The dependent variable is the discrimination index. The...


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...se their ability to identify the right person. This could also be applied in the police force. If identification photos incorporated this type of technique, it would be much easier and much quicker for an officer to verify one’s identity. And if this technique were used on portraits and pictures presented to school children it could potentially make figures more recognizable. In all of these cases, utilizing this technique could possibly increase one’s empathy towards members of other races as well. By averaging out distractions, it makes it easier to focus on the defining characteristics of a profile. Not only does this prove useful for identification, but it may also make it easier for one to detect changes they may not have noticed before. It could make people better at detecting certain emotions in members of other races, thus making them more empathetic.

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