Investigation of Reaction Times for True and False Memories
We investigated the creation of false memories in the Deese - Roediger - McDermott paradigm. We tested the hypothesis that the false recognition rates will be greater for the critical lures than for unrelated and related distractors. We tested whether there is a direct relationship between semantic relatedness of distractors and their false recognition rates. Our data supported these hypotheses. We concluded that our results support semantic priming and the spreading activation theory, and that the fuzzy-trace theory provides a fitting explanation for our findings.
Also, we the measured reaction times of recognition test responses. We tested whether there is a difference in the reaction times of the recognition test responses for true memories, represented by correct recognition of studied words, and false memories, represented by false recognition of nonstudied, critical lures. We tested whether source monitoring plays a significant role in the creation of false memories. Our results showed slower reaction time for false recognition of critical lures than the reaction time for false recognition of nonrelated distractors. This finding suggests that semantic priming and the spreading activation theory alone cannot explain the reaction time data. We concluded that source monitoring is an important factor in creation of false memories in the Deese-Roediger-McDermott paradigm. In addition, we tested whether the reaction time for false recognition of critical lures is greater than reaction time for correct recognition of studied words as would predict the fuzzy-trace theory. Our data support predictions of the fuzzy-trace theory. Our findings suggest that the fuzzy-trace theory provides fitting explanation for the false memory phenomenon.
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Wang, Alvin Y.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Arts and Sciences
Arts and Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic; Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Segev, Zuzana, "Investigation of Reaction Times for True and False Memories" (2004). HIM 1990-2015. 422.