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The Effects of Exposure to Misinformation on Eyewitness Memory and Testimony (Research Paper Sample)


The paper gives a report of the research conducted to determine the effects of exposing an eyewitness to misinformation.


The Effects of Exposure to Misinformation on Eyewitness Memory and Testimony
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If an eyewitness is either directly or indirectly exposed to misinformation about the actual facts, their memory and testimony is most likely to be influenced by the misleading information hence, inclining to disregard of the actual evidence of facts. Several incidences have been witnessed before, that justify the correlation between evidences given before and after distortion of an eyewitness' memory. This paper empirically unleashes the effects of exposure to misinformation on eyewitness memory and testimony, using 132 participants drawn from across genders. The genders were unevenly distributed, i.e. 66 male and 66 female participants were involved. The participants were further classified into different age groups notably: 18-30; 31-45; 46-55. To ascertain the validity of the facts, the research employed the usage of convenience sampling by determining the relationship between three variables notably: gender, age and misinformation. The results from this research justify the fact that being exposed to misinformation leads to distortions of the eyewitness' memory and testimony.
The Effects of Exposure to Misinformation on Eyewitness Memory and Testimony
Ideally if an eyewitness is exposed to his co-witness who apparently gives some misleading statement of a criminal whose action was witnessed by both, the eyewitness may be influenced by this statement and also and think of the criminal in the same line. This is normally occasioned by the degree of confidence in which the co-witness expresses his incorrect statement or the eyewitness' level of self-confidence. Sederberg et al. (2011, as cited in Phelps & Schiller, 2011) the type of interfering information normally represented during reconsideration tends to make the original memory vulnerable. In the words of Brainerd (2002) the reversal effects and predicted suppression are detectable under some expected conditions in both misinformation and false recognition.
Prior researches on direct or indirect exposure of an eye witness to misinformation have unveiled mixed findings on the effects of such exposure to the eye witness. Macleod (2002, as cited in Sterm et al., 2015) asserts that it is necessary to combine the misinformation paradigm with retrieval-practice paradigm for an effective study of the influence retrieval-induced forgetfulness to be realized. Whereas it has been noted that exposure to misinformation leads to distortions in the memories of human beings, other studies discredit this finding, alleging no effect of exposure to misinformation on the eye witness. This research paper thus took good care of the aforementioned in an attempt to validate the fact that exposing an eyewitness to misinformation possibly leads to distortion of their memory and testimony.
A total of 132 participants partook of the research. The number was equally distributed such that there was an equal number of males and females, i.e. 66 male and 66 female participants. In essence, the 132 participants drawn from an age bracket of 18-55 years. Considering the age as a factor, the participants were further classified into three groups pertaining to the variation in their ages. The first category was composed of those in age bracket 18-30; second category being in the bracket of 31-43; and lastly age bracket 44-55. Each category based on age, had a total of 44 participants each. It therefore implies that the only ages that were left out are those below 18 years of age and those who were above 55 years.
The aforementioned participants were recruited from the university college confines as well as those who live around the college for convenience purposes. It is further notable that the said participants were given refreshment and no other form of compensation was given to them, owing to the fact that only those with interest and will were considered for participation.
A number of materials and apparatus were used during the exercise. A laptop was used to play the video at that time. In order to enhance the visibility, a projector was plugged into the

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