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Cognitive Psychology: False Memory

by: Jeni Erickson

Cognitive Psychology: False Memory Psyc 3330

Marketplace > Clemson University > Psychology (PSYC) > Psyc 3330 > Cognitive Psychology False Memory
Jeni Erickson
GPA 3.7

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About this Document

This set of notes discusses how we add false memories to our thoughts, what induces false memories, and how to improve memory of random information.
Cognitive Psychology
Alley, Thomas
Class Notes
cognition, Cognitive Psychology, False, memory
25 ?




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jeni Erickson on Tuesday October 4, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psyc 3330 at Clemson University taught by Alley, Thomas in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Cognitive Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Clemson University.


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Date Created: 10/04/16
 False memories can be induced by: o Suggestion (Loftus)  Older brother of Chris tells Chris that he is doing a psychology experiment of memory. Gives Chris a brief passage describing hoe Chris had been lost at the Spokane Shopping mall when she was 5. Asked him to write everything he remembers about it.  Initially he doesn’t remember and uses vague variations.  After several weeks he was able to “remember” very detailed memories about the event.  The more detailed you try to make a memory, the more false memories creep in.  Another study took a photo of boy and son and photo shopped it into a hot air balloon even though he never did. They were able to recall; detailed memory about the event that never actually happened. o Beliefs about one’s past are readily influenced by clinicians’ dream interpretation. Dreams may be the “royal road to memory manipulation” (Freud thoughtt it was the royal road to the unconscious).  So a psychologist will interpret a patients dreams to tell them what they mean and about how it probably means something happened in their past. o Dreams later mistaken for actual events o Merely imagining events: Imagination-Inflation. (increase in confidence about an event simply because you have imagined it)  Convincing them that an event you only imagined actually occurred.  Imagining events increases the likelihood of believing they happened.  Study: listed 40 plausible events that could have occurred in childhood. Then told them to imagine a couple events.  Participants rate how confident they are that the events happened.  Those who weren’t confident that event happen, and then imagined the events were more confident that they did happen afterwards. o Suggestive therapists who use hypnosis, sodium amytal, dream interpretation and/or guided imagery can induce false memories. o Recovered (discontinuous) memories of children abuse are more likely to be valid if they occur outside “therapy” and are a surprise to the “victim”  Reconstructive Memory o Memories are rarely exact reproductions of what was experienced. We typically reconstruct memories using change because we get inferences, beliefs, pre-existing knowledge, and post-event information. o Our memories can have distortions and additions as well as errors of omission. o Other people may intentionally or unintentionally distort our memories or even implant false memories. o People can have false memories in a variety of situations. o We can have problems correctly identifying the source of info in memory. (Source monitoring problem) o Confidence is not a reliable indicator of accuracy. o Memory shifts due to knowledge or inference.  Representational momentum- our memories tend to be distorted in the direction of a perceived or implied motion.  Representational displacement: our memories tend to be distorted on the screen by the position of the object  Boundary Extension: a tendency to remember more of a scene that was actually seen.  Information is likely to have been present just outside the boundary of the actual view is often incorporate into memory for the scene.  Pictures drawn from memory may include elements that would logically fall just outside the boundaries of the original.  Improving Memory o Encoding and consolidation  Consolidation: converting temporary memories (STM) to LTM  Encoding:  Mnemonics  Method of loci: requires 3 steps o Identify sequence of familiar places o Create images of to-be-recalled (TBR) items associated with places. o Recall by “revisiting” them.  Peg Word System: pairs of rhyming words form Pegs for to-be-remembered  First Letter Technique: you take the first letter of the word you are trying to remember and put it with a different word that spells out a sentence or something.  Chunking: reduce amount you need to remember.  Rhyming/Keyword 


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