Children's eyewitness memory for multiple real-life events

Timothy N. Odegard, Crystal M. Cooper, James M. Lampinen, Valerie F. Reyna, Charles J. Brainerd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The present research examined the influence of prior knowledge on children's free recall, cued recall, recognition memory, and source memory judgments for a series of similar real-life events. Forty children (5-12 years old) attended 4 thematic birthday parties and were later interviewed about the events that transpired during the parties using the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development protocol. Of the events, half were generic in that they could have occurred at any birthday party, and half were specific to the theme of the party. Older children demonstrated more evidence of using gist-based information to guide their memory performance than did younger children. However, younger children were able to use global gist to inform their source memory judgments, qualifying past word-learning research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1877-1890
Number of pages14
JournalChild development
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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