Date of Award

5-2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Almut Hupbach

Abstract

In this research study, Directed Forgetting will be applied to Spontaneous Trait Inference to investigate another aspect of trait inferencing and if directed forgetting applies to the natural inductive processing of STIs. This will be done to see if one can actively forget a trait they had inferred from a trait-implying behavior. The findings will either support or contradict Irmak’s finding that updating and changing a first inferred trait (first impression) is difficult. This will provide another aspect of the importance of first impressions and test if it is possible to forget one’s first impression of another. Uleman’s findings of false recognitions of the presence of the trait in the trait-implying behavior will also be included by including the implied trait in some behaviors while omitting the implied trait from other behavioral descriptions. Additionally, to further investigate the difference between inductive and deductive processing of STIs, (behavior-to-trait and trait-to-behavior respectively), an experiment testing whether Directed Forgetting can be applied to recall of the specific trait-implying behavior itself will be performed. The results of this experiment will either support or negate the findings of Maas that trait inference recall is natural and spontaneous while behavior recall is more difficult and therefore, may rely on separate memory traces.

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