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To see whether giving people a displacement activity before recalling the words would affect the number of the last five words in a list of words that are remembered.

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Introduction

Psychology Coursework Introduction Aim: To see whether giving people a displacement activity before recalling the words would affect the number of the last five words in a list of words that are remembered. Hypothesis Alternative (Ha): People who recall words in a list with the displacement activity are less likely to recall the last five words in the list than those people who didn't have the displacement activity. Null (Ho): Any difference in the number of the last five words remembered by people who experienced the displacement activity and those who didn't, will be due to chance factors. Rationale: I am doing this experiment to find out whether having a displacement activity would affect the number of words remembered from the list. I chose this experiment as I am interested in finding out more about memory. I am going to the Glanzer and Cunitz displacement activity but changing the activity involved in the experiment instead of asking participants to count back from 100 in 3's like Glanzer and Cunitz I will ask them to recall their three times table up to sixty. Background Research: In 1966 two psychologists Glanzer and Cunitz experimented a displacement activity, this is where they asked participants to listen to a list of words then asked some of them to recall the words straight away and others to count back from 100 in 3s then to recall the words. They compared the words remembered and what position they were in the list. ...read more.

Middle

Thinking about doing you three times table will knock the last five words. My displacement activity was to do the three times table up to the number sixty. First I read the list of words again as previously then asked them to do the displacement activity. Then after the participant had done that they were then asked to recall the as many of words they can remember from the list previously read. I then ticked all the words the participants recalled. After carrying out both the experiments I then gathered all the participants together and I debriefed them to explain what they have been doing in their experiments and answer any questions if they have any. Controls: My controls were that I made sure that I picked the same amount of girls as I did boys and I only used one year so as not to let age affect the results. I also made sure that all participants received the same briefing before taking part in the experiment and debriefing after having done it. I tried to control their environment as much as I possibly could. In the experiment I used the same words, the same place and I carried out the experiment on the same day in order to make the environment for each person as similar as possible. If it was carried out on two different occasions other factors could have interfered with the participants recall e.g. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is because different people will be used with different memory skills. The experiment wasn't very reliable because people walked pass the room that we were in this could have effected the concentration on the participant and that could cause them not to remember as many of the words. To improve this we could use a wider variety of people and do the experiment in a quiet place where no one goes to cause a distraction. Implications: The results I have collected show that doing a displacement activity does affect the memory. In the experiment considerable more people remembered the last 5 words when they didn't have a displacement activity. This does show that if there isn't a displacement activity there participants are more likely to recall the last five words. Overall my experiment supports previous research and their conclusions drawn from the experiments. Generalisability: I think we could generalise the results to the whole population if we used a bigger sample that related to the whole population as our sample is only a small proportion of the whole population. Real life application: This would be that some times eye-witness testimonies might be incorrect as not because they are trying to frame somebody but because they generally can't remember. However if there is along time between the crime and the police statement made by the eye witness, the memories might be lost from decay. Another example for real life application might just simple be people doing two things at once the second will displace the first task as it's more recent. ...read more.

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