Drawing Individual Images Benefits Recognition accuracy in the Deese–Roediger–McDermott paradigm

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We examined the effects of drawing on correct and false recognition within the Deese–Roediger–McDermott (DRM) false memory paradigm. In Experiment 1, we compared drawing of a word’s referent using either a standard black pencil or coloured pencils relative to a read-only control group. Relative to reading, drawing in either black or coloured pencil similarly boosted correct recognition and reduced false recognition. Signal-detection analyses indicated that drawing reduced the amount of encoded memory information for critical lures and increased monitoring, indicating that both processes contributed to the false recognition reduction. Experiment 2 compared drawing of individual images of DRM list items relative to drawing integrated images using sets of DRM list items. False recognition was lower for drawing of individual images relative to integrated images—a pattern that reflected a decrease in encoded memory information but not monitoring. Therefore, drawing individual images improves memory accuracy in the DRM paradigm relative to a standard read-control task and an integrated-drawing task, which we argue is due to the recruitment of item-specific processing.

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Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology

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