factors affecting eyewitness testimony: anxiety

Daisy  U
Mind Map by Daisy U, updated more than 1 year ago
Daisy  U
Created by Daisy U almost 4 years ago


AS - Level psychology (chapter 2 - memory ) Mind Map on factors affecting eyewitness testimony: anxiety, created by Daisy U on 04/23/2016.

Resource summary

factors affecting eyewitness testimony: anxiety
1 the effects of anxiety
1.1 anxiety has stong emotional and physical effects - does this make EWT worse or better
1.1.1 anxiety has a negative effect on recall anxiety creates physiological arousal in the body - prevents use paying attention so worse recall Johnsons & Scott weapon focus effect procedure participant thought that they were taking part in a lab experiment low anxiety condition heard a calm conversation then a man walked out with greasy hands holding a pen high anxiety condition heard an argument and breaking glass then a man walked out with a bloody knife findings later the participants had to pick out the man form 50 photos low anxiety had 49% accuracy high anxiety had 33% accuracy tunnel theory attention focuses on the weapon ads it is the source of anxiety
1.1.2 anxiety has a positive effect on recall fight or flight is triggered - increases alertness and improves memory - more aware of the situation Yuille & Judith procedure study from a real life shooting shop owner shot a thief dead 21 witnesses - 13 agreed to take part interviews held 4-5 months after compared to the original police interviews accuracy determined by the number of details reported asked to report how stressed they were out of 7 and any emotional problems findings very accurate little change some were less accurate e.g. colour of shirt, height weight the participants who reported the highest levels of stress were most accurate 88% rather than 75% of less stressed group
1.1.3 explaining the contradictory findings Yerkes and Dodson Deffenbacher applied it to EWT found that it is accurate
2 evaluation
2.1 weapon focus effect may not be relevant
2.1.1 may test surprise more than anxiety they focused on the weapon as they were surprised pickel did the some but different objects in a hair salon scissors got the least surprise and raw chicken got the most
2.2 field studies sometimes lack control
2.2.1 if they interview long after the event anything could have happened e.g. post event discussion extraneous variables less accurate recall
2.3 there are ethical issues
2.3.1 creating anxiety could cause physiological harm doesn't make any difference to the results benefit of the research may outweigh the issues
3 evaluation +
3.1 the inverted U explanation is too simplistic
3.1.1 anxiety is hard to define and measure accurately it has many elements - cognitive, behavioural, emotional, physical inverted U says only physiological is involved
3.2 demand characteristics operate in lab studies of anxiety
3.2.1 watch a film (usually a staged crime) participants can guess that they are going to be asked questions they are more vigilant
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