Long-Term Memory Effects of Eye Closure on Children Eyewitness Testimonies


Valeria Natali, Department of Psychology, ‘La Sapienza’ University of Rome, Via dei Marsi, 78, 00148 Rome, Italy.

E-mail: vale.natali@yahoo.it


Previous studies conducted on adults and children found that closing the eyes while recalling an event increased memory accuracy for both free and cued recall. One possible explanation to this phenomenon is that eye closure increases the amount of cognitive resources devoted to the task reducing external stimulation, but it is still not clear whether the beneficial effect is only due to a better focus on the task or to a better encoding of the material leading to an advantage over time. In this study, we evaluated the effect of eye closure instruction on children memory accuracy for a short clip in an immediate and delayed recall. We observed that asking participants to close their eyes while performing a memory task helped them to remember more details and that this effect persisted after a time delay. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.