The ability of witnesses of a criminal event to accurately recall what they have seen may be affected by various factors. This study explored whether individual differences such as anxiety, depression, and the Big Five personality traits were associated with memory accuracy for witnessed events. Participants were 211 undergraduates who watched videos varying in emotional valence (negative or neutral), completed measures of anxiety (STAI), depression (BDI-II), and personality traits (BFI) and then were asked to recall details from the videos. Results indicated that some individual differences variables, such as anxiety, conscientiousness, and neuroticism do have an association with memory accuracy. Research examining individual differences' association with memory accuracy may provide useful information to judges, juries, and investigators who are attempting to decide whether or not an eyewitness is credible.
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Thesis advisor: Read, John Donald
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