Biography of Dr. Elizabeth Loftus
My name is Shanae Fouts and I am creating this web page for my Senior capstone project for History, Systems of Psychology at the University of Central Oklahoma. As a student in this class I was to choose a figure in the psychological community and deeply explore their life and their life's work. I have chosen to complete my project on Dr. Elizabeth Loftus, a memory researcher, who has been a significant figure in the psychological community for several years, studying the malleability memory and the ways memories are reconstructed as well as testifying as an expert witness in high profile cases about memory. Dr. Loftus has found that our memories are actively reconstructed instead of the previous theory where memories were passively stored and then recalled intact. Her studies have found that memory is easily susceptible to change and this susceptibility is a reason that memory should not be used as evidence in criminal court cases.
The picture above is of Dr. Loftus taken from the University of Washington website, where Dr. Loftus has previously taught. Dr. Loftus has conducted many experiments on the malleability of memory. These experiments include, but are not limited to: Lost in a Shopping Mall and The Bunny Effect. Dr. Loftus has also appeared in several criminal court cases as an expert witness in the field of memory, the Misinformation Effect, and the overall malleability of memory. Several of these cases that Dr. Loftus has testified in have been high profile cases including Ted Bundy and George Franklin. Dr. Loftus' life, achievements, and work will all be explored throughout the extent of this webpage. Dr. Loftus' life experiences and educational background led her to be interested in memory and its many pitfalls, she has confirmed her theories on the malleability of memory from her many empirical studies on the subject, and throughout her life has found that malleable memory has significant and sometimes costly consequences for experiences lived by people.