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The Effect of Leading Question on Memory Essay

The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of leading question on memory. The study had been carried out with 540 English literate participants on both genders aged 18 to 50 years old. They were mostly college mates. A participant’s consent form was instructed to sign before each participant was given a picture of a car accident to observe for only 15 seconds. After that, a question was asked regarding the speed as in km/hr when they were crashed onto each other by using a related word such as smashed, collided, bumped, hit or contacted. The results indicated that leading question would affect on both memory and perception. Results obtained were not all consistent with the predicted hypotheses.

Everyday, we witness many things that happened surrounding us. We have seen lots of incidents on happenings. However, we could not really remember all the things accurately depending on the importance of the event that affecting us. Some people are very alert and aware of what they have seen. Moreover, if they have good memory, then, they can consider as a good witness. However, people who do not pay much attention probably are not good eyewitnesses.

Participants

A total of 540 participants were recruited for the study. All the 540 participants were either males or females and aged between 18 to 50 years old. Furthermore, they were English literate and were not visually disabled or auditory impaired. In addition, participants were mostly college mates, relatives, housemates as well as friends. All the 540 participants were individually conducted the experiment by the experimenter.

Materials

The material that had been used to be observed by participants in this experiment were a picture of an accident occurred. Two cars were crashed just immediate after the cross junction of traffic lights. One of the cars ran the red light and hit on the other car came across the road.

Procedure

All the participants in this experiment were conducted individually. Participants were took to a place with minimal disturbance. Then, they were informed that the purpose of the experiment was concerning eyewitness memory. After that, participants were told that they were shown a picture of a car accident occurred for 15 seconds. After 15 seconds, the picture was taken away. Participants were asked at what speed did the car travel when the accident happened.

Before the experiment was conducted, participants were given a consent form to sign. After each participant had signed the consent form, the experimental showed the picture of the car accident for 15 seconds, and took it away, then, the experiment asked the participant. “How fast do you think car were speeding when they smashed into or collided in, or bumped into or hit or contacted each other? The experimenter then recorded the participants’ answer in the result table. The experimenter thanked the participants for taking part in the experiment.


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