Emotional Recall: How Memories Interact With Our Emotions


Emotional Recall: How Memories Interact With Our Emotions



Justin Boucher, Nathan Hurtubise, PSY435: Human Memory
Faculty Mentor(s): Professor Stephani Foraker, Psychology

Episodic memories are the autobiographical memories of first-hand experiences and events which we encounter throughout our lives. Through this study, we seek to measure the emotional responses that relate to the recall of these episodic memories. Using Qualtrics to survey Buffalo State students, we ask them about negative and positive emotions related to certain memories. Participants will rate common experiences (e.g., high school graduation) along with meaningful experiences they rate as especially negative or positive to them. Participants will also rate their emotions on a positive to negative scale for each memory. Finally, they will be asked about personality traits, which may affect how individuals categorize their experiences. We predict that participants will report emotions consistent with the common experiences and personal experiences, positive or negative. Importantly, we predict that those who self-describe as having sentimental traits should rate themselves as having more extreme emotions accompanying recall. Participants who rate themselves as less optimistic may rate stronger negative emotional responses with negative memories. Data collection is underway and full results will be reported. This study will help to advance our knowledge on how memories can modulate our mood and invoke emotional responses as part of "reliving" episodic memories.

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Emotional Recall: How Memories Interact With Our Emotions