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Children's Implanted False Memories and Additional Script Knowledge

Authors

  • Henry Otgaar,

    Corresponding author
    • Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Clinical Psychological Science, Forensic Psychology section, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands
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  • Tom Smeets,

    1. Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Clinical Psychological Science, Forensic Psychology section, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands
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  • Maarten Peters

    1. Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Clinical Psychological Science, Forensic Psychology section, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands
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Henry Otgaar, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Maastricht University, PO Box 616, 6200 MD, Maastricht, the Netherlands.

E-mail: Henry.Otgaar@maastrichtuniversity.nl

Summary

The present study examined whether repeatedly providing additional script knowledge of an event would boost the development of children's implanted false memories. Seventy-two 7- to 9-year-old children listened to a true narrative about their first day at school and a false narrative describing that they went to a burns centre when they were four years old. Children were randomly allocated to one of three groups: one group without additional script knowledge and two groups that received a video about the two events to promote additional event-related script knowledge of which one group had to view the video repeatedly (i.e. once a day). Across two interviews, children were encouraged to tell everything they remembered about the events. Results showed that at the second interview, children who were presented with the additional script knowledge were more likely to develop a false memory than the children who did not receive additional script knowledge. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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