It is well-accepted that our visual systems can sometimes lead us astray, leading to visual illusions. It can be harder to realize how readily our memories can also lead us astray, resulting in illusory memories or false memories. This course will focus on the many ways in which false memories are exhibited and what we can learn from them about memory more generally. Topics will range from eyewitness memory and flashbulb memories to more everyday conversational false memories. We will also learn about how imagination and remembering interact. Many false memory controversies exist, and we will explore some of them. Finally, we will consider how false memories might be considered an adaptive feature of a flexible cognitive system, which usually serves us well but, in the right circumstances, can also lead us astray. PREREQ: Psych 100B and EITHER Psych 221, OR Psych 360, OR Psych 380.
Course Attributes: BU BA; AS SSC; EN S