Target Article: Roediger, H.L. & McDermott, K.B (1995). Creating False Memories: Remembering Words Not Presented in Lists. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 21, 803-814.
Rational and variables: The experiment that was done was to find out the frequency at which people had false recall of information. The experiment also tested the rates at which people remembered false information that was related to the information that was discuses. The information in the case of the class experiment pertained to alcohol. Through the use of a list of word and a free recall, words related to but not on the list were tested. The rational of the experiment was, the more people who were heavy drinkers would have more target instructions because the are exposed to alcohol and things related to alcohol. However the people that are light drink have less target instructions, because they are not exposed to alcohol related things. The independent variables were the high and low drinkers, and the dependent variables were the target intrusions.
Method: In a PSYC 165 Lab, 48 students participated in an experiment. Of the 48 students 57% of them were woman, and 43% were men. The group’s age ranged from 18 to 22 and consisted of students with African, European, Asian, and Latino background. The Instructor read a list of 9 words that were to be memorized by the group of students, which related to alcohol. When he finished reading them out, there was a 90-second period were the group of student had time to talk with other students around them. The Group of word includes toast, bar, mixer, shot, proof, malt, draft, and spirits. After the 90 seconds was over the participants were asked to recall as many words as they can and were asked to write them down on a piece of paper. Next the patricians were asked to write down their gender, age, ethnicity, and year in school. Then the percipience were also asked their drinking behavior. The instructor explained what was considered a drink, such as 12-ounce beer, 5 ounces of wine, and so on. First question asked by the instructor was how many days per week the patricians drink. The next question was how many days per month they drink, then the average drinks per occasion. The final question asked was the most number of drinks per occasion that the participant had at one time. ...
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...in the study should have been more to the point to find out if a person is a heavy drinker or a light drinker. This problem affects the result of the study because we are unable to find out who really is a heavy drinker and a low drinker, which then would mix up our data when we are trying to compare the two with number of target intrusions. I would suggest that we develop new question that is more to the point of finding out the drinking behavior of a person. I believe if we receive information about the heavy and low drinkers then our data may tell us a lot more by comparing the two to see, the number of target intrusions and we also could compare the number of word recalled if you are a heavy or light drinker. The other problem with the experiment was that I don’t believe that the groups of students in the two classes were very diverse. The problem can affect our result because we are unable to see the affect of a result based on a variety of races and religions. To solve the problem the study should be done in a more diverse population. The results would change I believe because of the different trends that different group of communities drink and the kind of memory they have.
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