Repeated Exposure to Suggestion and the Creation of False Memories

The article is about a study that was carried out about repetition and illusion in relation to suggestions given by eye witnesses (Zaragoza & Karen1996). The assessment was about whether repeated exposure to suggestion would make it possible for the creation of false memories for a recommended event.

The experiment that was carried out involved around 155 undergraduates who were made to view a 5 min of a film involving police portraying a home burglary. The burglary involved two youths who were chased by a police car (Zaragoza & Karen1996).  Some of the research questions asked in the questionnaire were; 1. At the beginning of the scene, a young man dressed in jeans, a t-shirt and gloves entered the house. Did he enter through the door? 13. Let’s begin at the start of the scene again. At the beginning of the film clip, the young man who entered the house was dressed in jeans, a t-shirt and gloves. Was it a “Mickey Mouse” t-shirt? 25. OK, returning once again to the beginning of the scene, a slender young man wearing jeans, a t-shirt and gloves entered the house. Did he wear a jacket (Zaragoza & Karen1996).

The above questions were interesting because they tend to confuse the people who were involved in the experiment by suggesting some ideas to find out whether they could lead to false memories. The theoretical issues that are related to this experiment are that one is likely to be influenced when certain information is repeated consistently to think that the suggestions are true. Logically the results of the experiment are based on the answers that the subjects gave on the various questions that were given.

The findings of the experiment were that repetition makes a suggestion look more elaborate and seemingly true to various individuals. This paper according to me makes a lot of sense because it is able to weigh the option of introducing information that is geared towards making the subjects thin in a certain way. The number of the questions that the subjects were asked were far too many as they totaled to thirty six questions that were divided into three sub sets of twelve questions each. Despite the fact that the questions referred to the eyewitness event that the subjects had an opportunity to watch, the manner in which the questions were administered was confusing.

The misleading post event questioning was too complicated to an extent of almost inducing false memories to the subjects. This does not portray systematic approach to the problem as asking fewer questions after the after would have portrayed. It is like the experiment had some predetermined results that had to be met for the experiment to appear to be realistic. It is important for people conducting such an experiment to know that the findings could go either way instead of trying to prove a point. This experiment would have been more professional and qualitative if such approach was used.

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