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Putting false memories into context: The effects of odour contexts on correct and false recall

Woods, Joshua A.; Dewhurst, Stephen A.


Joshua A. Woods


False memories created by the Deese/Roediger-McDermott (DRM) paradigm are often accompanied by contextual information. Yet, research investigating the effects of context on false memories is surprisingly scarce. We used the context-dependent memory (CDM) model to construct same versus different context conditions using odours as contexts and DRM lists as to-be-remembered stimuli. Experiment 1 showed that levels of correct recall were higher in the same-context condition than in the changed-context condition, but no effects of context were observed in false recall. Experiment 2 used different odours and a longer retention interval and showed that context dependent memory effects were found for both true and false memory. For true memory, context reinstatement improved memory, whilst simultaneously reducing false memory. Theoretical and forensic implications of these findings are discussed.


Woods, J. A., & Dewhurst, S. A. (2019). Putting false memories into context: The effects of odour contexts on correct and false recall. Memory, 27(3), 379-386.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 9, 2018
Online Publication Date Aug 23, 2018
Publication Date 2019
Deposit Date Aug 10, 2018
Publicly Available Date Aug 24, 2019
Print ISSN 0965-8211
Electronic ISSN 1464-0686
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 27
Issue 3
Pages 379-386
Keywords False memory; Context-dependent memory; DRM paradigm
Public URL
Publisher URL
Copyright Statement ©2018 University of Hull


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