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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Maths
  • Word count: 4098

Are participants more likely to recall a list of words, when words are accompanied by pictures?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Emily Bridges

Are participants more likely to recall a list of words, when words are

accompanied by pictures?

Abstract:

The aim of my experiment was to discover whether words accompanied by an image is a better technique of remembering words than those without images. The experimental hypothesis was that there would be significantly more words recalled from a list of words accompanied by pictures than from the same list of words unaccompanied by pictures. An independent measures design was used to gain picture and non-picture scores from two sets of participants. A total of 32 participants were used from college using a casual sample. The results were in the form of scores and were analysed using the Mann Whitney U test, and were found to be significant at the 0.05 level of significance for a one tailed test. It was therefore concluded that the use of imagery, when remembering words is a more superior technique that trying to remember a list of words that is unaccompanied by imagery.

Introduction:

This study is designed to see if when words are accompanied by pictures the rate of retrieval is higher. To be able to predict a hypothesis we need to take a brief look at how the memory works, and some theories behind it.

Definitions of memory:

“the retention of learning or experience”*

“the capacity for storing and retrieving information”*

Components of memory: Memory is mostly used in one of three ways;

  1. A mental function in which information can be retrieved and retained. Memory is used when we organise something so it can be recalled later.
  2. A storage system where memories are retained, short-term and long-term memory are used with storage.
  3. The information we remember.

In this experiment we are concerned with the first use of memory, retaining and retrieving.

Retrieval:

...read more.

Middle

In the first set of participants (the participants were tested separately) there were 16 people. In the second set of participants (also tested seperately) there were 16 people.

        This independent measures design produced data that was at least ordinal and therefore the Mann Whitney U test was used to analyse it.

Participants: The total number of participants used was 32 with there being 16 participants in each of the groups, all aged between 16 and 18. There were 8 females and 8 males in each of the groups. Participants were taken from college using an opportunity sample. Only two people approached refused to participate.

Materials and Apparatus: Two sets of 20 cards were used, all of the word cards produced had a single word (and picture) on them, all typed in upper case, with the font used Times New Roman. The font size between words was not kept the same, as some words were harder to fit onto the page than others. On one set of cards each of the words were accompanied by a picture. Each of the participants were given an A6 blank piece of lined paper to write the words they could remember, and a pen. A watch with a second hand was used to time intervals, time to remember words, and so forth.

Procedure: We approached participants and asked if they wouldn’t mind participating in a psychology experiment for 15 minutes. Once their permission had been obtained we allocated them to one of the two conditions by deciding before the experiment was carried out that the first 16 participants were to be shown words with pictures, and the second 16 participants were to be shown words without pictures. Each participant was read standardised instructions (see appendix) and then were shown either the set of words with pictures, or the set of words without pictures.

...read more.

Conclusion

References:

Rita L. Atkinson et al. – Introduction to Psychology (11th edition) (1953) Harcourt

        Brace College Publishers

Alan Baddeley – Your Memory – A User’s Guide  (1993) Penguin Books

Alan Baddeley – Human Memory – Theory and Practice (1990) Lawerence Erlbaum    

Associates Ltd: Publishers

Mike Cardwell – The Complete A –Z Psychology  (1996) Hodder and Stoughton

Annette Cassells – Remembering and forgetting (1991) The British Psychological

Society

Gillian Cohen – Memory in the Real World  (1996) Psychology Press Ltd

C.B. Dobson et al. – Understanding Psychology (1981) Weidenfeld and Nicolson

Richard Gross – Psychology – The Science of Mind and Behaviour (third edition)

        (1996) Hodder and Stoughton

Richard Gross et. al. – Psychology a new Introduction  (1999) Hodder and Stoughton

Alan J. Parkin - Memory and Amnesia – An Introduction (1987) Basil Blackwell

Standardised Instructions (Item 1) – read to all participants

Only read to participants the instructions in italics:

In this memory test you will be presented with 20 words (with pictures) each for 7 seconds. Please try and remember these words so you can recall them when asked to.

List of words (for reference)

  1. Cloud
  2. Frog
  3. Bucket
  4. Bridge
  5. Hand
  6. Crown
  7. Train
  8. Eye
  9. Tree
  10. House
  11. Castle
  12. Cat
  13. Brush
  14. Fire
  15. Boot
  16. Book
  17. Seagull
  18. Glasses
  19. Chimney
  20. Dinosaur

Show each of the words (with / without pictures) for 7 seconds each, in the order shown above. Do not interact with the participant during this time.

Once all of the words have been shown tell the participant they are to have a short break of one minute.

Give the participant a piece of paper and pen and ask them to write down as many of the words as they can recall. Tell the participant they have two and a half minutes to do this.

Once this time is up collect the paper off of them, and thank them for their time and help. Then debrief them…

Debriefing:

You have just participated in a memory test. I am trying to find out if a list of words can be recalled more easily if they are accompanied by pictures.

(If the participant saw the words without pictures then add…)

You have participated in the first part of the experiment where words are not accompanied by pictures.

Table of Results: Item 2

Condition A

Condition B

Participant

Number

Words recalled with pictures

Words recalled without pictures

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

14

9

18

16

11

17

16

12

10

17

17

16

11

18

16

15

8

8

9

13

10

10

13

9

11

10

12

11

10

12

13

10

...read more.

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