Bizarreness as a mnemonic

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dc.contributor.advisor Hutchinson, Roger L. en_US Tess, Dan E. en_US 2011-06-03T19:31:47Z 2011-06-03T19:31:47Z 1991 en_US 1991
dc.identifier LD2489.Z68 1991 .T47 en_US
dc.description.abstract The purpose of this study was to explore bizarreness, a type of imagery, as a proposed phenomenon involved in recall by reviewing the salient literature and to empirically investigate whether this mnemonic device did indeed enhance memory. A corollary aim was to gain a greater understanding of the degree and the conditions under which this mnemonic influenced the retrieval and storage of information. No consistent picture has emerged as to the effectiveness of bizarreness as a mnemonic device. Some studies have found claims that bizarreness enhanced recall to be either grossly overestimated or nonexistent, while others have argued for the extensive mnemonic benefits of bizarreness and have supported a "strong version" of the distinctiveness framework. Still yet another group of studies have found mnemonic value from bizarreness, but only under certain conditions. These studies have ranged from acknowledging the "bizarreness context effect" or BCE as minimal and highly conditional to viewing bizarreness as an active agent in increasing recall to a great degree across a variety of conditions. Other investigations have fallen between these two more extreme positions. The vast majority of these studies also have supported the distinctiveness theory for understanding the role of bizarreness in the enhancement of retrieval and storage of information. Specifically, a "restricted version" of this theory has proven especially tenable in accounting for the bulk of empirical findings. Therefore, this present study has addressed the following problems: Does bizarreness really work as a mnemonic device? If so, what conditions facilitate or inhibit a "bizarreness context effect" and to what degree? A sample of sixty high school seniors enrolled in college-bound English classes served as participants. Twelve additional students were selected for a pre and posttest, focusing on free recall of names. Materials consisted of a slide projector and screen, slides of English Romantic Era poets, answer sheets, and distractor task exercises. Participants were presented slides of these poets for instructional, immediate recall, and delayed recall conditions. Two independent variables served to examine the effects of bizarreness on the retrieval and storage of information. These were imagery type (bizarre versus common) and trial condition (immediate and delayed). The dependent measure was the number of English Romantic Era poets recalled by the high school sample. The design used was a mixed list with a minimally cued, noninteracting recall condition. A 2 x 2 repeated measures ANOVA design was utilized to analyze the sample data. Preliminary pre and post free recall tests revealed no statistically significant differences in students' recall of names among poets. The findings also indicated that null hypotheses twoand three were rejected. Statistically significant differences were found for both hypotheses at the .05 level. A simple effects analysis was performed on hypothesis two to clarify the significant group by trial ordinal interaction. A planned comparison was conducted on the statistically significant effect (imagery type) for hypothesis three to further understand these differences. Although no statistically significant group by trial interaction was found for hypothesis one, there was a statistically significant main effect for groups. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Department of Counseling Psychology and Guidance Services
dc.format.extent viii, 103 leaves ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Mnemonics. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Visualization. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Memory. en_US
dc.title Bizarreness as a mnemonic en_US Thesis (Ph. D.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3090]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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