Although humor has been used in various areas such

Although humor has been used in various areas such as entertainment, advertising, andeducation, convincing evidence of positive effects of humor and attention wasinsufficient (Schmidt, 1994). Thus, the positive effects of humor on memory wereinvestigated (Schmidt, 1994). Humorous and non­humorous versions of sentences werecompared to test the effects of humor on memory. To control for changing semanticmeaning because it could affect the participant’s recall, the content of the sentences wasthe same. For humorous material, the sentences were described in a funnier way, whereashumor was removed for the non­humorous condition. In addition, 20 sentences werechosen from a larger sample of the sentences depending on their rated humor, forhumorous and non­humorous conditions. Humor improved sentence memory when anyvariables that could affect recall were controlled (Schmidt, 1994). Our experiment isrelated to Schmidt’s work in that our research is based on the study. Our research kept thehumor independent variable, having sentences that are humorous and non­humorous.Both studies expected that participants would remember humorous sentences better thannon­humorous sentences.Also, we could think of the visual stimuli as a factor that enhances our memoryaccuracy. In order to investigate the effect of visual stimuli on memory, previous researchexamined that the presence of pictures would facilitate children’s ability to recall thecontent of given passages (Jennifer & Max, 1979). Seventy­two children were asked toread six short passages in which only half of them contained pictures. The results showedthat the children recalled better when they were shown the passage with simple linedrawings than without simple line drawings. Thus, the results indicated that the presenceof a picture would enhance the memory performance of the children (Jennifer & Max,1979). One of our experiment hypotheses is that sentences with pictures would scorehigher on the recall test than sentences without pictures. If we suppose that the result ofour study would have a significant main effect of pictures on memory, then both studiescould be related to each other under the same casual relationship: The presence ofpictures has a positive effect on our memory accuracy.Based on the data obtained from the two previous research studies, we mightassume that there could be greater memory accuracy if humor and pictures werecombined together. The levels of valence and arousal were assessed to test memoryaccuracy for pictures (Margaret, Mark, Margaret, & Peter, 1992). The effects ofpleasantness and arousal on short­term accuracy were investigated using a series of 60slides rated on the levels of pleasantness and arousal. For short­term memory, levels ofpleasantness and arousal had a significant main effect each. It indicated that slides withhigh arousing were better recalled than slides in lower arousing level. Also, the slideshaving high level of pleasant and unpleasant had more accurate memory than neuralslides. In our experiment, we hypothesized that there would be an interaction betweenhumor and pictures. Considered the concept of humor, it tends to provoke laughter, whichcould be closer to the state of either high arousal or valence compared to neutral state.Thus, we could assume that humor could be similar with the state in high arousal andvalence. And the 60 slides, which are visual materials, were used to measure memoryaccuracy in this research because they might be effective tools that stimulate our sensoryeasily. Thus, our study could be connected by this research in terms of purpose and theway of measurement.Our study is related to these research studies in terms of their basic purpose: wewere trying to find out the factors that have effects on our memory. There are a lot ofpossible factors but our study focused on the effects of humor and pictures becauseresearch about positive effects of humor was neither sufficient nor consistent and wewere curious about the combination of both factors that would influence memoryaccuracy. Thus, we planned to reflect Schmidt’s work and advance a little bit further,using the presence of a picture. First of all, we kept the basic foundation, type of sentence(humorous/ non-humorous) from Schmidt (1994). “Type of Sentence” was our firstindependent variable and it would test if humor would have positive effects on memory,our first hypothesis. It indicated that our first hypothesis was established by the researchof Schmidt (1994). By adding another independent variable, “presence of a picture,” wealso expected that pictures with sentences would reinforce recall performance becausepictures might aid to elaborate the connection between pictures and the sentence and leadto improve our memory recall when they were presented with a descriptive passage. Thishypothesis was based on the previous research finding, suggesting that the role ofpictures is significant to children’s prose recall (Jennifer & Max, 1979). Furthermore, wewanted to know about the possible interaction of two independent variables. We predictedthat for humorous sentences, participants would have higher memory accuracy whenpresented with picture than when no pictures presented. This is because our recall couldbe reinforced when we were exposed to either high arousal or high valence stimuli(Margaret et al., 1992). Therefore, we anticipated that the humorous sentences withpictures would cause participants to have better memory than humorous sentenceswithout pictures.

 

 

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