Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation




Experimental Psychology

First Advisor

Jennifer MC Vendemia


The current study examined the impact of age and executive function on susceptibility to misinformation. A total of 41 healthy young (19-31) and older (59-77) adults were presented with visual misinformation in a paradigm originally used by Okado and Stark (2005). Participants then completed a recognition memory task while undergoing a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan. Participants also completed a series of cognitive measures used to assess executive function. Results showed that age and executive function were both significant predictors of recognition memory accuracy. Activity in brain regions associated with conflict processing was greater for accurate versus false memory retrieval in both older and young adults. In older adults, activity in the anterior cingulate cortex was positively correlated with accuracy. The results of the current work demonstrate that conflict resolution is a critical part of overcoming the effects of misinformation and individual difference variables predict susceptibility in young adults as well as older adults.


© 2013, Michelle Phillips-Meek

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