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Who is susceptible in three false memory tasks?

  • Nichols, Rebecca M
  • Loftus, Elizabeth F
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2019
eScholarship - University of California
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Decades of research show that people are susceptible to developing false memories. But if they do so in one task, are they likely to do so in a different one? The answer: "No". In the current research, a large number of participants took part in three well-established false memory paradigms (a misinformation task, the Deese-Roediger-McDermott [DRM] list learning paradigm, and an imagination inflation exercise) as well as completed several individual difference measures. Results indicate that many correlations between false memory variables in all three inter-paradigm comparisons are null, though some small, positive, significant correlations emerged. Moreover, very few individual difference variables significantly correlated with false memories, and any significant correlations were rather small. It seems likely, therefore, that there is no false memory "trait". In other words, no one type of person seems especially prone, or especially resilient, to the ubiquity of memory distortion.

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