For this assignment, you will write a paper which compares your memory of a specific event with someone else’s memory of that event (note: the other person must have been present at the event). Instructions for this assignment were given in Module 11, and are reproduced here.
First, choose a memorable event (wedding, funeral, vacation, road trip, accident, etc.). Write down everything you can remember about the event. Then, you will need to ask someone else who was there to do the same. You can use a recent event, or a distant one; just be sure to pick an event that was attended by someone who will be willing to help you with this assignment.
When you ask the other person to recollect the event, name the event for the person (e.g., “Will you please write down for me everything you remember about our Disneyland trip when I was 7?”), but do not share your memories of the event with them (don’t say “you know, the time I got food poisoning so you stayed with me in the hotel for two days while everyone else went to Disneyland”). Also, do not read or listen to their memory until you have written your own. Avoid memory contamination: do not engage in joint reminiscing about the event until after both of you have written down your memories.
For the 1-2 page paper (double spaced), you will compare the memories. You should not reproduce both memories in their entirety in the paper; just (1) briefly describe the event, (2) tell who else you asked to recall the event, (3) compare your recollections of it with that of your friend. Note both similarities and differences in the memories. (4) Discuss the differences, note any patterns in the differences, and what you think the source of those differences are (e.g., what differences in personal history, development, gender, etc. might account for differences in which aspects are remembered?). Tie your discussion to concepts from module 11 about encoding, retrieval, reconsolidation, and the constructed nature of memory.
Bold the following prompts in your paper, and put your responses (in regular, 12-point font) below each prompt.
1.) The event I remembered was:
2.) I asked __________ to also recall that event.
3.) Our memories about that event were different and similar in the following ways:
4.) I think differences (or similarities) in our memories are probably because: