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AS and A Level: Cognitive Psychology

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  1. Peer reviewed

    A study by Loftus and Palmer (1974) into the accuracy of Eye Witness Testimony aimed to find out if changing the wording of a question could distort ones ability to recall from memory an event.

    4 star(s)

    Similarly, when called back a week later and asked if any broken glass was seen, they found that although there wasn't any present, 32% in the 'smashed' condition said they had seen broken glass. Loftus and Palmer therefore concluded that by using the word 'smash' it gives suggestions of strong impact and thus shows that leading questions have an impact on the accuracy of eyewitness' ability to re-call situations. The strengths from this study include providing useful insight for the police so they know that when interviewing witnesses they should be aware of the way they phrase their questions to ensure the memory of the witness isn't distorted in any way.

    • Word count: 864
  2. Free essay

    Trace Decay Theory

    4 star(s)

    Ebbinghaus concluded that over time, the trace faded and the list of syllables was lost. However, there are some criticisms of this experiment, one being that he was the only participant so it is hard to make a generalisation from such a small sample. A further criticism of his experiment was using himself as a participant which could lead to experimenter bias. He knew what his aims and results were, so there was a possibility of demand characteristics. Overall, the criticisms of the trace decay theory are that we cannot physically see the trace so it is impossible to prove,

    • Word count: 904
  3. Peer reviewed

    Outline and evaluate research relating to the linguistic relativity hypothesis

    4 star(s)

    Brown & Lenneberg studied Zuni speakers in New Mexico, whose language had no separate word to describe yellow and orange, and found that they had difficulty in a task that required them to distinguish the two. This appears to support the hypothesis, but there has been research to indicate the contrary. Challenging research comes from Rosch, who studied speakers of Dani (a language of New Guinea). Dani has no words for separate colours, instead only distinguishing brightness, and yet its speakers were successful in tasks that required them to distinguish between a wide array of colours.

    • Word count: 825
  4. Peer reviewed

    The Biological model

    4 star(s)

    It has been found that an excess of the neurotransmitter dopamine has been linked to SZ. Finally infection is a common cause for physical illness; Barr et al found a significant link between mothers who had influenza whilst pregnant and their child developing SZ. As there are physiological causes of abnormality therefore the treatments are physiological these are Drugs, ECT, which involves a small electric shock being sent to the brain causing a small seizure/convulsion and psychosurgery.

    • Word count: 515
  5. Peer reviewed

    'To what extent does psychological research support Atkinson and Shiffrin's model of memory?'

    4 star(s)

    There is some evidence to support this view. In one particular experiment, participants were asked to rehearse a list of items out loud. In general, the more frequently an item was rehearsed the more likely it was to be recalled from LTM (Rundus, 1971). However, evidence from everyday situations implies that rehearsal is a lot less important than the multi-store model suggests. Eysenck & Keane (1995) said that people rarely rehearse information in their everyday lives yet information is constantly entering LTM.

    • Word count: 832
  6. Peer reviewed

    To what extent does research support the view that eyewitness testimony is unreliable?

    3 star(s)

    He also assumed that the schemas influence what happens at the time of retrieval, but have no effect on what happens at the time of comprehension of a story, other evidence suggests that schemas influence comprehension and retrieval. Brewer and Treyens (1981) investigated the effects of schemas on visual memory by asking their 30 participants, one at a time, to wait in a room for 35 seconds. The findings showed that the participants were most likely to recall the typical office items, for example, items with high schema expectancy, but were less successful at recalling the incompatible items such as the brick; however eight participants recalled the really bizarre item, the skull.

    • Word count: 1430
  7. Peer reviewed

    Describe the application of psychodynamic in health and social care

    3 star(s)

    According to www.skepdic.com '[the] unconscious mind has been restricted to potentially harmful memories that might be stored or stirring there, memories of bad experiences that influence our conscious behaviour even though we are unaware of their impact. Because of this, behaviour is different and changed in someone and the unconscious mind is unaware of it which in conclusion makes the person unable to change their behaviour.

    • Word count: 504
  8. Peer reviewed

    Explanation of cognitive approach

    3 star(s)

    It is these repressed memories that can cause underlying/unconscious problems. The id, ego and superego all are prevalent and developed at different stages according to Freud. These stages are called the psychosexual stages and if fixated at a particular stage future adult life can be affected. The first stage is the oral stage and is where the id is produced and developed. This stage is from 0-18 months and is called the oral stage because the ids drive for pleasure and gratification is satisfied and concentrated in the mouth.

    • Word count: 995
  9. Peer reviewed

    Piaget and Vygotsky theory. Compare and contrast two theories of cognitive development and discuss how they impact on the contemporary early years practice.

    3 star(s)

    According to Piaget, babies are born with the ability to adapt and learn from the environment. He believed that a child goes through four stages: sensory motor, preoperational, concrete operational and formal operational. Piaget developed his theory of development stages from observing his own three children and many other young children. Sensory motor stage (0 to 2 years): In this stage the child is dependent upon the adult and is completely egocentric. Child learns through sight, sound, touch, smell and taste to identify objects. During this stage children use trial and error as their main tool of findings.

    • Word count: 1122
  10. Peer reviewed

    Majority Influence

    3 star(s)

    This can be criticised as being ambiguous as it is very difficult to distinguish exactly how far a light has been moved and there was no right or wrong answer. The participants were first tested individually, in which the results varied dramatically, they then heard the estimates of others. When the participants had heard the estimates of others, their estimates converged to that of others, they became more alike and a group norm developed. This demonstrates informational social influence as participants probably felt that other participants had better knowledge than them or were more informed of the situation and were therefore more likely to have estimated the right distance.

    • Word count: 741
  11. Peer reviewed

    "Discuss two theories of forgetting in LTM"

    3 star(s)

    List A: Desk-Boy, List B: Desk-Tree. Then P's are given the first word in the pair and asked to recall the word in List A. The study found that Interference does cause forgetting but only when similar information is paired together, these conditions are rare in everyday life and this means that interference does not really explain most of forgetting in LTM. A criticism of the study is that Interference does not seem to occur with Experts, if you are an expert in a field then learning new information does not cause any interference in the old information this may be because an experts memory is highly organised.

    • Word count: 791

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