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The origin of children's implanted false memories: Memory traces or compliance?

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Abstract

A longstanding question in false memory research is whether children's implanted false memories represent actual memory traces or merely result from compliance. The current study examined this question using a response latency based deception task. Forty-five 8-year-old children received narratives about a true (first day at school) and false event (hot air balloon ride). Across two interviews, 58/32% of the participants developed a partial/full false memory. Interestingly, these children also showed higher false recall on an unrelated DRM paradigm compared to children without a false memory. The crucial finding, however, was that the results of the deception task revealed that children with partial and full false memories were faster to confirm than to deny statements relating to the false event. This indicates that children's implanted false memories reflect actual memory traces, and are unlikely to be explained by mere compliance.

    Research areas

  • Children, False memory, Compliance, Memory, AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY, SUGGESTIBILITY, TRUE, EVENT, MISINFORMATION, INFORMATION, BELIEFS, PLAUSIBILITY, VALIDITY, CRITERIA
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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-403
Number of pages7
JournalActa Psychologica
Volume139
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012