Encoding involves altering the information presented into a different signifier. Since words or other points in the short term shop are rehearsed or repeated, we might presume that they are encoded in footings of their sound ( acoustic cryptography ) . In contrast, the information we have stored in the long term memory about ever seems to be stored in footings of its significance ( semantic cryptography ) .

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Encoding takes many different signifiers ; ocular, audile, semantic, gustatory sensation and odor.


The short term shop has really limited capacity, about 7 points. In contrast the capacity of the long term memory is assumed to be so big that it can non be filled, it is said to hold unlimited capacity and lasts potentially everlastingly.


Information lasts longer in the long term shop than in the short term shop, . There is grounds that in the short term shop, if non rehearsed, information will vanish within approximately 18 – 20 seconds and in contrast there is grounds that aged people can recognize the names of fellow pupils from 48 old ages antecedently.


As a consequence of encryption, the information is stored in the memory system ; it can stay stored for a really long clip possibly a full life-time.


Recovering information from the memory system. Can be known as callback or memory.

Short term Memory


Short term Memory – A impermanent topographic point for hive awaying information. Short term memory has a really limited capacity and short continuance, unless the information within it is maintained through dry run.

Capacity in STM ( Jacobs ) :


To look into how much information can be held in short term memory.

To make this, Jacob ‘s needed an accurate step of STM capacity – he devised a technique called the consecutive figure span

His research was the first systematic survey of STM


This was a research lab survey utilizing the figure span technique

P ‘s were presented with a sequence of letters or figures

This was followed by a consecutive callback ( reiterating back the letters or figures in the same order they were presented )

The gait of the point presentation was controlled to half 2nd intervals through a metronome

Initially, the sequence was 3 points – it was so increased by a individual point until the participant systematically failed to reproduce the sequence right

This was repeated over a figure of tests to set up the participants ‘ figure span.

The longest sequence length that was recalled right on at least 50 % of the tests was taken to be the P ‘s STM figure span


Jacobs found that the mean STM span ( figure of points recalled ) was between 5 and 9 points

Digits were recalled better ( 9.3 points ) than missive ( 7.3 points )

Individual differences were found, explicating the scope of 5-9

STM span increased with age – in one sample he found an 6.6 norm for 8 twelvemonth old kids compared to 8.6 for 19 twelvemonth olds


The findings show that STM has a limited storage capacity of between 5 and 9 points

The capacity of STM is non determined much by the nature of the information to be learned but by the size of the STM span, which is reasonably changeless across persons of a given age

Individual differences of STM span increasing with age may be due to increasing encephalon capacity or improved memory techniques, such as lumping


+ The survey has great historical importance because it represents the first systematic effort to measure the capacity of STM

– The research lacks everyday pragmatism as the digit-span undertaking is non representative of mundane memory demands – the artificiality of the undertaking may hold made the consequences biased. Letterss and Numberss are non really meaningful, so may non be remembered every bit good as meaningful information.

– This means that the capacity of STM may be greater for mundane memory.

– Jacobs ‘ findings can non be generalised to existent life memory – so it may hold low ecological cogency

– However, it could be argued that utilizing more meaningful information would bring forth a less pure step of STM capacity, because participants could do usage of LTM to better public presentation

+ The findings have been usefully applied to better memory ( phone Numberss etc ) . Memory betterment techniques are based on the findings that digit span can non be increased, but the size of the spots of information can be – this is what happens in lumping.

Encoding in STM ( Conrad )


To prove the hypothesis that short term memory encodes information acoustically


Conrad ( 1964 ) compared public presentation with acoustically and visually presented informations.

Presented P ‘s with 6 letters at a clip, for 0.75 seconds

P ‘s had to remember the letters in the order they were shown


Letterss were presented visually, but 1s which sounded the same were confused ( e.g. S was recalled alternatively of X )


– Later research showed that ocular codifications do be in STM – sometimes

– During a different experiment ( Posner ‘s ) , reaction clip was longer for Aa than AA – proposing a ocular processing instead than acoustic



They aimed to analyze how long information remains in short term memory, utilizing simple stimulations and non leting the participants to practise the stuff presented to them

They wanted to prove the hypothesis that information non rehearsed is lost quickly from short-run memory.


They used the ‘Brown-Peterson ‘ technique.

On each test participants were presented with a trigram consisting of 3 consonants e.g. BVM, CTG which they knew they would hold to remember in the right order.

Recall was required after a hold of 3, 6, 6, 12, 15, or 18 seconds.

Between the initial presentation of the trigram and the clip participants were asked to remember, they were told to number back in 3s from a random 3 digit figure e.g. 866, 863, 860aˆ¦ this was done to forestall dry run.

Participants were tested repeatedly with the assorted clip holds and the consequence of the clip hold on memory was assessed in footings of the figure of trigrams recalled.


There was a rapid addition in burying from the STM s the clip hold increased.

After 3 seconds 80 % of the trigrams were recalled.

After 6 seconds 50 % were recalled

After 18 seconds fewer than 10 % of the trigrams were recalled.

Therefore really small information remained in the STM for more than 18 seconds.


The findings suggest strongly that information held in the STM is quickly lost when there is small or no chance for dry run.

Therefore information in the STM is delicate and easy bury


– They used unreal stimulations ( i.e. trigrams ) , which have really small significance and hence the experiment lacks everyday pragmatism and external cogency.

– The participants were given many trails with different trigrams so may hold become baffled.

– Peterson and Peterson merely considered STM continuance for one type of stimulation, and did non supply information about continuance of STM in other sorts of stimuli e.g. images, odors, tunes.

+ It was a good controlled lab experiment, which allows a cause and consequence relationship to be established.

+ Repeated steps design

Long term Memory


Long term Memory – A comparatively lasting shop, which has unlimited capacity and continuance. Different sorts of long term memory have been identified ; episodic ( memory for personal events ) , semantic ( memory for facts and information ) and procedural ( memory for actions and accomplishments ) .



Bahrick et al aimed to look into the continuance of really long term memory ( VLTM ) , to see if they could last over several decennaries and therefore back up the premise that the continuance of long term memory can last a life clip.

They aimed to prove VLTM in a manner that showed external cogency by proving memory for real-life information.


329 American ex-high-school pupils aged from 17 – 74 were used – It was an chance sample.

They were tested in a figure of ways:

Free callback of the names of every bit many former category couples as possible

A exposure acknowledgment trial, where they were asked to place former schoolmates in a set of 50 exposure, merely some of which were schoolmates.

A name acknowledgment trial

A name and exposure duplicate trial

Participants truth ( and therefore continuance of memory ) was assessed by comparing their responses with high-school twelvemonth books incorporating images and names of all the pupils in that twelvemonth.


90 % truth in face and name acknowledgment ( even with participants that had left high school 34 old ages ago )

After 48 old ages of go forthing this truth of name acknowledgment declined to 80 % and for face acknowledgment it was 40 %

Free callback was considerable less accurate ; 60 % accurate after 15 old ages and merely 30 % accurate after 48 old ages.


The findings show that schoolmates were seldom forgotten one time participants were given acknowledgment hints. Thus the purpose of really long term memory was supported.

The research demonstrates VLTM for a peculiar type of information, it can non be concluded that VLTM exists for all types of information.

The determination that free callback was merely 30 % after 48 old ages indicates that memories were reasonably weak.


+ This survey provides grounds for the premise that information can stay in the LTM for really long periods of clip.

– Schoolmates faces and names are a really peculiar type of information. They might hold emotional significance, and at that place was a great trade of chance for dry run, given the day-to-day contact they would hold experienced. The same is non true for other types of information and hence the findings can non be generalised to other types of information.

+ Bahrick ‘s research has high mundane pragmatism as he asked participants to remember existent life memories, and hence the research is more representative of natural behavior and so has high external cogency, and it may be possible to generalize the findings to other scenes.

Models of Memory

The Multi-store Model of Memory – Atkinson and Shiffrin

Atkinson and Shiffrin argued that there are three memory shops:

sensory shop

short-run shop

long-run shop

Harmonizing to the theory information from the environment is ab initio received by the centripetal shops.

( There is a centripetal shop for each sense. )

Some information in the centripetal shops is attended to and processed farther by the short-run shop.

In turn some information processed in the short-run shop is transferred to the long-run shop through dry run or verbally reiterating it. The more something is rehearsed the stronger the memory

hint in the long-run memory.

Long-run Memory

Short-run Memory

Centripetal Memory

DataThe chief accent of this theoretical account is on the construction of memory on dry run.



Evaluation of the Multi-store Model

+ Case surveies of encephalon damaged patients lend support to the multi-store theoretical account ; they support the position that there are two different memory shops.

+ Glanzer and Cunitz found that when dry run is prevented, the recentness consequence disappears.

+ There is grounds that encoding is different in short term and long-run memory. For illustration Baddeley found that acoustic or sound encryption was in the short-run memory and semantic or intending encryption was in the long-run memory.

+ There are immense differences in the continuance of information in the short term and long term memory. Unrehearsed information in the short-run memory had vanished after about 20 seconds ( Peterson & A ; Peterson ) . In contrast some information in the long-run memory is still there 48 old ages after larning ( Bahrick et al. )

– The theoretical account argues that the transportation of information for short term to long-run memory is through dry run. However in day-to-day life people devote small clip to active dry run, although they are invariably hive awaying new information into the long-run memory. Rehearsal may depict what happens in research labs but is non true to existent life.

Craik & A ; Lockhart

Suggest that it is the degree at which we process information that determines how good we remember it. Rehearsal represents a reasonably shallow treating degree.

– This theoretical account is oversimplified. It assumes that there is a individual short-run shop and a individual long-run shop. These premises have been disproved, by grounds such as that from the surveies of encephalon amendss patients.

KF had a bike accident that left him with a badly impaired STM but he could still do new long-run memories. Besides Clive Wearing, another encephalon damaged patient, could till play the piano, speak and walk.

Therefore it makes sense to place several long-run memory shops ; episodic memory, semantic memory, declaratory cognition and procedural cognition. Atkinson and Shiffrin focus entirely on declaratory cognition and had practically nil to state about procedural cognition e.g. accomplishments and acquisition.

Degrees of Processing Theory – Craik and Lockhart

Craik and Lockhart put frontward an option to the multi-store theoretical account of memory, called the degrees of treating theory. This attack focuses its attending on how information is encoded

Craik and Lockhart argued that dry run is non sufficient plenty to account for LTM, they proposed that it is the degree at which information is processed at the clip that determines whether something is stored in the LTM.

They stated that if something is processed profoundly than it will be stored but if something is merely processed instead superficially than it wo n’t be stored as efficaciously.

Shallow processing was physical ( what it looked like )

Intermediate processing was audile ( what it sounds like )

Deep processing was semantic ( what it means ) this was the degree of treating that they argued was needed to outdo shop information in the LTM.

Deep processing includes

Semantic processing




Evaluation of the Levels of Processing Theory

+ Research by Hyde and Jenkins has supported this theory.

+ It deals with some of the defects of the multi-store theoretical account ; it does non trust on dry run, it sees memory as a more active procedure.

+ The degree of treating theory offered a theoretical account that could be applied to bettering memory. for illustration if you ‘re happening it difficult to retrieve something do n’t merely reiterate it lucubrate on it and do the memory distinctive.

– We can non command what goes on in people ‘s heads, merely because participants are asked to treat a word in a peculiar manner, there is nil to halt them prosecuting in other degrees of processing.

– The theoretical account has been criticised for being excessively obscure, sometimes it is non clear what degree of processing in necessary. It does n’t truly lucubrate on what is deep processing and what is non.

– There is some grounds that does n’t back up Craik and Lockhart ‘s theory. Morris, Bransford and Franks found that stored information is remembered merely if it is relevant to the memory trial.

They conducted a survey and gave their participants several words, they found that participants remembered words that had been processed in footings of their sound ( shallow processing ) better than those that had been processed for significance ( deep processing ) . Therefore confuting the statement that deep processing is ALWAYS better than shallow processing.

– Talving suggests that retrieval hints are of import in retrieving and Craik and Lockhart did n’t take this into history.

Craik and Lockhart did non explicate the effectivity of different sorts of processing, they did non province why deep, elaborative, or typical processing lead to better LTM.

Theories of Forgeting

Explanations for Forgeting in STM

There are two different accounts for burying in the Short Term memory they are:




This is based on the thought that memories have a physical footing that will disintegrate in clip unless it is passed onto the LTM through dry run.

Evaluation of Decay

– It is difficult to prove

Reitman – Attempted to mensurate decay in an experiment where she presented a list of words and so gave participants a tone sensing undertaking to forestall dry run. But besides to forestall new acquisition. After 15 seconds participants could merely retrieve 24 % of the words. Therefore back uping the position that information may hold decayed.

BUT we can non command what goes on in peoples caputs so it is impossible to cognize that no new information was taken in

Besides it lacks everyday pragmatism as it is non representative of existent life and lone utilizations free callback.


This theory argues that when the capacity to the STM ( 7 points ) is full, the old information gets ‘knocked ‘ out by the new information

Evaluation of Displacement

+ Waugh and Norman – Demonstrated support for supplanting as they showed that when a investigation was given at the terminal of a list of Numberss, the undermentioned figure is more likely to be recalled than when a investigation was at the beginning of the list.

– HOWEVER Waugh and Norman ‘s survey lacked external cogency as it was an unreal undertaking and did n’t needfully state us anything us about memory in mundane life.

– Besides Shallice found that when the rate of presentation velocity up the figure of points remembered increased. This suggests that STM works on a clip based system instead than a capacity based system. Therefore back uping the theory of decay non displacement.

Waugh and Normans survey did n’t govern out the possibility that information might be disintegrating instead than being displaced.

Theories of Forgeting in LTM

There are two different accounts for burying in the Long Term memory they are:


Cue-dependant forgetting

Interference Theory

There are two types of intervention ; Proactive intervention and Retro-active intervention.

Proactive Interference, is when old information prevents the acquisition of new information.

Retro-active intervention, is when new information interferes with old information and pervert it so it is no longer available.

The more similar the information, the more likely it is to be affected by intervention.

Evaluation of the Interference Theory

+ Results of mated associate acquisition undertakings support the position that both pro-active and retro-active intervention drama a portion in forgetting.

+ Jenkins and Dallenbach ‘s survey supports the position that intervention is a factor in forgetting.

– Group of participants were given a list of nonsensical syllables to larn.

– One group stayed awake during the keeping period and the other group went to kip.

– Both groups memory for the information was tested at assorted intervals.

– It was found that the awake group forgot far more than the group that was asleep, hence back uping intervention, as the awake group were more likely to acquire new information than the asleep group.


– The clip of twenty-four hours may hold been a confusing variable, the kiping group learned before traveling to bed and the awake group learned during the twenty-four hours.

– It is unreal and lacks everyday pragmatism

– There is besides no control over what the kiping group were making during the keeping period.

– Tulving and Psotka found that when a cued callback undertaking was given the effects of intervention disappear. This suggests that the original memory hint is non corrupted as suggested by the intervention theory, but that free callback is non sufficient to be able to entree it.

– The account describes the effects but does n’t explicate why they happen.

Cue Dependent Forgetting

Tulving suggests that a batch of forgetting is merely retrieval failure and with the right cues we will be able to entree the information.

He besides suggest that the closer the retrieval cue is to the stored information, the more likely it will that the cue will be successful in recovering the memory. Which is supported by the tip of the lingua phenomenon.

Evaluation of Cue Dependent Forgetting

+ Tulving and Pearlstone gave participants lists of words to retrieve arranged under headers. Half the participants had to liberate remember the words ( given a clean sheet of paper ) the other half were given the class headers. Those with the class headers remembered far more words, which supports the cue dependent theory.

+ Tulving and Psotka gave participants lists of words to retrieve some had one list, some had two and some had six. They found that the more lists a participant had to larn the poorer the callback, when they were tested utilizing free callback. HOWEVER when cues were given the intervention consequence disappeared.

– Both of Talving ‘s surveies are unreal and lack mundane pragmatism, therefore it does n’t needfully state us much about how we use memory in a existent life state of affairs.

+ The theoretical account has practical applications as it can assist people to better their memories.

+ Research into State and Context dependence supports the cue dependence theory

State Dependency – where the internal physiological or psychological province of the person at the clip of the acquisition acts as a cue for retrieving. Goddwin found that when heavy drinkers hid keys or money when they were rummies they could merely happen them when they were drunk once more.

This survey is good as it is more realistic than a lab experiment. Although there is a deficiency of control as it is a natural experiment.

Context Dependency – where the external physical environment at the point of acquisition Acts of the Apostless as a cue for retrieving. Baddeley found that when deep sea frogmans learned information under H2O they were more likely to be able to remember the information when underwater than those who had learned on dry land.

HOWEVER he merely looked at one specific group of people, but the survey did hold practical applications.

Emotional Factors in Memory


A farther ground for non being able to recover a memory that causes negative emotions is that it may hold been repressed, or held from witting consciousness. Freud stated that repression is one of the self-importance defense mechanism mechanisms. Repression can be used to explicate forgetting in the footings that the anxiousness caused by the memory in some manner represses it from witting idea.

Evaluation of Repression

– Sigmund freud theory is difficult to prove so can non be proved or disproved.

– This theory does n’t explicate why forgetting increases over clip, or why we forget good things every bit good as bad.

+ The theory of repression is supported by Williams survey.

Williams found that female victims of kid maltreatment were likely to quash their memories of that event. HOWEVER there is a opportunity that they merely may non hold wanted to speak about it with the interviewer.

– Very immature kids may non be able to put down stable memories and hence forgetting may be due to disintegrate instead than repression. BUT the fact that some victims recovered the information after a period of clip supports the thought that their forgetting was due to repression.

– Williams used a bias sample and lone trades with a specific state of affairs so hence his consequences can non needfully be generalised and his experiment lacks external cogency.

– There is no manner to cognize whether or non the initial studies of maltreatment were existent / true or non, so hence

consequences may be compromised. Or the cured memories may be false – demand features.

+ Post Traumatic Stress Disorder supports the thought of repression. As victims frequently lose their memory of a really traumatic event or inside informations that surround it, they may retrieve these memories subsequently on either spontaneously or through therapy.

HOWEVER Loftus ‘s research suggests that a batch of cured memories may be false, traveling against the thought of repression, as the memories have non been recovered.

Flashbulb Memories – Brown and Kulik

A flashbulb memory is a long lasting, elaborate and graphic memory of a specific event and the context in which it occurred. The event is of import and emotionally important e.g. a national or personal event. It is as if a flash exposure was taken at the really minute of the event with every item indelibly printed in memory. Flashbulb events do n’t hold to be negative or to concern international events. However about all surveies of photoflash memories have focused on dramatic universe events. Brown and Kulik suggested that flashbulb memories were typical because they were both digesting and accurate

Evaluation of Flashbulb Memories

– Brown and Kulik had no manner of cognizing if the participants Flashbulb memories were accurate / reliable.

McCloskey, Wible, and Cohen wanted to prove the dependability of photoflash memories, they interviewed people shortly after the detonation of the infinite bird Challenger and so re-interviewed the same people 9 months subsequently.

They found that participants did bury elements of the event, and showed some inaccuracies in their callback. This suggests that photoflash memories are capable to burying in the same manner that other memories are.

Conway et al disagreed with McCloskey et Al, they stated that the Challenger detonation was non a really good illustration of flashbulb memory as it did non hold of import effects in the lives of those who were interviewed, and hence lacked one of the cardinal standards for flashbulb memory.

Critical Issue – Eyewitness Testimony

Reconstructive Memory

Reconstructive Memory ( Bartlett ‘s )


Bartlett aimed to look into the effects of scheme ( packages of cognition about the universe ) on participants ‘ callback.

Schemas include anterior outlooks, attitudes biass, and stereotypes. The survey was based on Bartlett ‘s scheme theory, which states that memory involves an active Reconstruction

Harmonizing to this theory, what we remember depends on two factors – The information presented to us, and deformations created by our trust on scheme. These deformations would be most likely to happen when the P ‘s scheme were of small relevancy to the stuff being learned.


Twenty English P ‘s took portion in this natural experiment

P ‘s were presented with a scope of stimulations, including different narratives and line drawings

A perennial production method was used as P ‘s were asked to reproduce the stimulation they had seen repeatedly at different clip intervals.

The clip interval varied between yearss, months, and even old ages.

The narrative called ‘The War of the Ghosts ‘ is the best known illustration of Bartlett ‘s stuffs.

The narrative was selected because it was from a different civilization ( North American Indian ) , so would conflict with the participants ‘ anterior cognition contained in their scheme

The P ‘s narrative reproductions were analysed in order to measure the deformations


Bartlett found high deformations in the P ‘s remembrances

The deformations increased over consecutive callbacks and most of these reflected the P ‘s efforts to do the narrative more like a narrative from their ain civilization.

Changes from the original included rationalizations, which made the narrative more logical, as the narrative was shortened and the linguistic communication was changed to be more similar to their ain linguistic communication.

Equally good as flattening, which was a failure to remember unfamiliar inside informations, such as the shades.

Sharpening, which was amplification of certain content and change of its importance.

These alterations made the narrative easier to retrieve


Bartlett concluded that the truth of memory is low.

The alterations to the narrative on callback showed that the P ‘s were actively retracing the narrative to suit their bing scheme, so his scheme theory was supported

He believed that scheme affect retrieval instead than encoding or storage.

He besides concluded that memory was everlastingly being reconstructed because each consecutive reproduction showed more alterations, which contradicted Bartlett ‘s original outlook that the reproductions would finally go fixed.

The research has of import deductions for the coverage of events necessitating great truth, such as in oculus informant testimony.


+ Bartlett ‘s research is of import, because it provided some of the first grounds that what we remember depends on our anterior cognition in the signifier of scheme

+ It besides has more ecological cogency than most memory research, because schemas drama a major function in mundane memory.

– Bartlett assumed that the deformations in callback produced by his P ‘s were due to genuine jobs with memory. However, his instructions were really obscure. it is likely that many of the deformations were really conjectures made by P ‘s, who were seeking to do their callback seem logical and complete.

– Bartlett assumed that schemas influence what happens at the clip of retrieval, but have no consequence on what happens at the clip of apprehension of a narrative. Other grounds suggests that schemas influence apprehension ( encoding and storage ) and retrieval.

– Another unfavorable judgment of Bartlett ‘s work was that it lacked objectiveness. Some psychologists believe that good controlled experiments are the lone manner to bring forth nonsubjective informations. His methods were rather insouciant. he merely asked his P ‘s to remember the narrative at assorted intervals with no particular conditions for this callback.

Eyewitness Testimony ( Loftus and Palmer ) :


To prove their hypothesis that eyewitness testimony is delicate and can easy be distorted.

Loftus and Palmer aimed to demo that taking inquiries could falsify eyewitness testimony histories via the cues provided in the inquiry.

To prove their hypothesis, Loftus and Palmer asked people to gauge the velocity of motor vehicles utilizing different signifiers of inquiries after they observed a auto accident. The appraisal of vehicle velocity is something people are by and large rather bad at, so they may be more unfastened to suggestion by taking inquiries.


45 American pupils formed an chance sample

This was a laboratory experiment with 5 conditions. Each participant merely experienced one status ( an independent steps design )

P ‘s were shown a brief movie of a auto accident affecting a figure of autos. They were so asked to depict what happened as if they were eyewitnesses.

After they had watched the movie, the P ‘s were asked specific inquiries including the inquiry ‘about how fast were the autos traveling when they ( hit/smashed/collided/bumped/contacted -the five conditions ) each other? ‘

Therefore, the IV was the diction of the inquiry and the DV was the velocity reported by the P ‘s.

A hebdomad after the P ‘s were shown the movie, they were asked ‘Did you see any broken glass? ‘ when there really was no broken glass in the movie


Loftus and Palmer found that estimated velocity was influence by the verb used. The verb implied information about the velocity, which affected the P ‘s memory of the accident.

Those who were asked the inquiry where the verb used was ‘smashed ‘ though the autos were traveling faster than those who were asked the inquiry with the verb ‘hit ‘ as the verb.

The average estimation when ‘smashed ‘ was used was 41mph. compared to 34mph when ‘hit ‘ was used.

Therefore, the P ‘s in the ‘smashed ‘ status reported the highest velocities, followed by ‘collided ‘ , ‘bumped ‘ , ‘hit ‘ , and ‘contacted ‘ in falling order.

In replying the follow up inquiry, a higher per centum of P ‘s who heard ‘smashed ‘ said that they had seen broken glass than those who heard ‘hit ‘ . These per centums were 32 % compared with 14 % .


The inquiries asked can be termed ‘leading ‘ inquiries because they affected the P ‘s memory of the event.

The reply to a taking inquiry is in the inquiry – the inquiry contains information about what the reply should be.

Therefore, linguistic communication can hold a distorting affect on Eyewitness testimony, which can take to inaccurate histories of witnessed events.

It is possible that the memory had been reconstructed. However, it is besides possible that the original memory may hold been replaced or experienced intervention. This has of import deductions for the inquiries used in police interviews of eyewitnesses.


– The research lacks everyday pragmatism, as what the perceivers saw in the research lab would non hold had the same emotional impact as witnessing a existent life accident. It besides differs from existent life in that the P ‘s knew that something interesting was traveling to be shown to them, and were paying full attending to it. In existent life, eyewitnesses are typically taken by surprise and frequently fail to pay close attending to the event or incident.

– This research by Loftus and Palmer is of import in demoing that the memories of eyewitnesses can easy be distorted. However, the chief deformation produced in this survey was for an unimportant piece of information ( the presence of broken glass ) , and it has proved harder to bring forth deformations for information of cardinal importance ( e.g. the arm used by a felon ) .

– The P ‘s witnessed a brief movie, which may hold contained much less information than would be available when detecting an incident or offense in existent life.

Eyewitness Testimony – Undependability:

Eyewitness testimony tends to be undependable yet many jurymans find it extremely persuasive.

This undependability possibly explained in footings of the rehabilitative nature of memory ( schema theory ) and the effects of linguistic communication on memory.

The scheme theory offers a different position on memory that describes memory retrieval as a procedure of active Reconstruction trusting on, and being biased by, scheme and stereotypes.

Schemas affect callback because they affect both initial acquisition and subsequent retrieval. However, it can non account for occasions when memory is accurate.

Undependability may besides be due to the emotional province of the informant at the clip of the offense.

The construct of flashbulb memory suggests that callback may be improved because of high emotion.

Alternatively, emotion may make pent-up memories.

Enhanced memories may convey out unaccessible memories but such recall tends to be influenced by taking inquiries.

Leading inquiries are a 3rd account for deficiency of dependability of eyewitness testimony. When eyewitnesses are questioned after an event the linguistic communication used may impact the manner information is stored and therefore affect subsequently recall.

There is general grounds that linguistic communication effects recall. The research on taking inquiries, nevertheless, is based on research lab surveies and may non use to existent life.

Face acknowledgment is an of import and frequently undependable component of eyewitness testimony. Identikit images may non be effectual because they are based more on characteristic sensing than constellation and they are inactive.

A concluding factor that may impact the dependability of eyewitness testimony is weapon focal point. This is where the eyewitness may non properly see the condemnable as they are focused on the arm instead than their face. This will do it hard to place them.

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