Eye Witness Lab: Results and Discussion Section

In: Psychology

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Results

The mean number of correct responses as a function of time-delay and type of questions are presented in Table 1. A 2 ([time delay: 0 min. v. 5 min]) x 2 ([type of questions: leading v. non-leading]) between-subjects ANOVA was performed to evaluate the effect of time-delay and type of questions on recall accuracy. The analysis showed a marginally significant main effect of leading questions, (F(1, 47) = 3.44, p = .07), and no main effect of type of questions (F(1,47) = 1.08, p > .050), and a no significant (time delay x type of questions) interaction (F(1, 47) = .085, p > .05) .

Discussion

The experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of leading questions on eyewitness accuracy. We predicted that if participants were presented with leading questions, number of correct responses on the recall test following the leading questions would decrease. The results of this study did not replicate the findings in earlier work by Loftus (1975), in showing that leading questions did not significantly decrease accuracy on the recall test in both a time-delay and no time delay conditions. There was little difference in recall of the existing object and the difference was not statistically significant.

A factor which may have influenced our finding is that the staged-event witnessed in the experiment was not exactly the same for all conditions. Because this experiment used the real-life event instead of a video tape, it was difficult to duplicate the event the exact same way for all conditions. In addition, a substitute confederate was used in one of the conditions due to the unavailability of our confederate.

Although, the findings were not consistent with previous studies, it is important for future researchers to further examine to see how well the results of previous studies indicate real world effects. If the results…...

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