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Acts of generating and their sources: Predicting the effects of imagery encoding on false recognition errors

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In the two experiments reported here the basis of the beneficial effects of generating images on false recognition errors is investigated. Acts of generating (descriptions, images, or both) were manipulated while examining the effects of the source of descriptions guiding imagery generations (participant vs peer). False recognition errors were relatively high across encoding conditions except when imagery generations were based on participants' own descriptions (Experiments 1 and 2). These differences in the acts of generating were not attributable to differences in the cohesiveness of descriptions themselves. Acts of generating led to greater “remember” responses than “know” responses only when participants were not the source of the descriptions used to generate images (Experiment 2). Results highlight the importance of examining the effects of the source of descriptions for guiding imagery (participant or peer) when testing predictions about the effects of imagery encoding on false recognition errors.
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Keywords: False memory; Imagery encoding; Source monitoring

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Psychology, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2012

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