Telephone Numbers B Letters or Numbers
Although telephones use both numbers and letters on the dialler, we use telephone numbers and not telephone letters. The chapter on memory in your text discusses how meaningful material is more easily remembered than meaningless material. Be sure to read and incorporate some of the information in Chapter 8 into your introduction.
1. The telephone sequences composed only of letters should be the easiest to recall.
2. The all numerical list should be the hardest to recall.
Ask 10 people, older than 10, to participate.
Three lists of 10 sets. Prepare three pages each containing one list of items to be remembered. You will also need several pages for recording the answers and a pencil.
Work with your subjects one at a time. Give them List A to study for 30 seconds. Remove the list and allow 30 seconds to write down as many of the seven item sequences as they can remember, in any order. Repeat with List B, followed by List C.
Prepare a table indicating the scores for each subject on the three lists, and calculate the mean (average) scores. The entire seven items must be correct to earn a point. Scores can range from 0 to 10 for each subject for each list.
Did your results support the two hypotheses? Why not? Why were the all-letter sequences easiest to recall? If you were consulting to a new telephone company, what would you recommend and why? What are possible effects of 10-digit calling?
Here you should discuss memory and meaningfulness. You might also provide suggestions for a new experiment based on this one or discuss applications of this problem in real life, for example, passwords for computers, bank accounts, etc. This is also where you can include any background reading you have done.
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