Date of Award

8-1996

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Malcolm Robertson

Second Advisor

Dr. Richard Spates

Third Advisor

Dr. Patricia Meinhold

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only

Abstract

This study was designed to investigate recall for central and peripheral information of arousing and neutral situations at both immediate and extended retention intervals. Sixty female undergraduate participants were randomly assigned to one of four groups and compared. The four groups included subjects tested immediately or two weeks after witnessing an arousing or neutral slide presentation.

In contrast to research findings suggesting that arousing events cause a narrowing of attention and result in poorer recall and those suggesting that arousing events enhance recall, statistical analyses in this study revealed no significant differences between groups on percent of information recalled accurately or on subjective certainty measures. Possible reasons for these results are discussed as are the implications of the finding for the field of memory research. Suggestions for future research include a call for further behavioral research into memory.

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