Maria S. Zaragoza

Maria S. Zaragoza

Department of Psychology
Office Location:
303 Kent Hall
Contact Information

Research Area:

Does Dr. Zaragoza plan to recruit a doctoral student for the next incoming class?

Research Interests:

Research interests focus on the role of misinformation in the development of false memories and false beliefs, and the mechanisms that give rise to these memory illusions.  Much of our work on misinformation and false memories has been conducted in the context of laboratory studies of eyewitness suggestibility.  In addition to understanding how people come to develop false memories and false beliefs, other projects focus on how best to correct misinformation (e.g., how to correct the effects of misinformation in the media, myths and misconceptions, etc.).

Courses Frequently Taught:

  • Cognitive Psychology (undergraduate)
  • Memory & Cognition (graduate)



Zaragoza, M.S., Rich, P. R., Rindal, E. J., DeFranco, R. M., & Zaragoza, M. S. (in press). Forced Fabrication and False Eyewitness Memories.  To appear in Nash, R. & Ost, J. (Eds.).  False Memories. London, UK:  Psychology Press.

Rindal, E. J., DeFranco, R. M., Rich, P. R., & Zaragoza, M. S. (2016). Does Reactivating a Witnessed Memory Increase Its Susceptibility to Impairment by Subsequent Misinformation?  Journal of Experimental Psychology:  Learning, Memory, & Cognition. (

Rich, P. R. & Zaragoza, M.S. (2016). The continued influence of implied and explicitly stated misinformation in news reports. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition. 42 (1), 62-74.

Chrobak, Q.M., Rindal, E. & Zaragoza, M.S. (2015). The impact of multifaceted questions on eyewitness accuracy following forced fabrication interviews. Journal of General Psychology, 142:3, 150-166.

Chrobak, Q. M., & Zaragoza, M. S. (2013). When Forced Fabrications Become Truth: Causal Explanations and False Memory Development. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 142 (3), 827-844.

Ackil, J. & Zaragoza, M.S. (2011). Forced fabrication versus interviewer suggestions: Differences in false memory depend on how memory is assessed. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 25, 933-942.

Zaragoza, M.S., Mitchell, K. J., Payment, K., & Drivdahl, S. (2011). False memories for suggestions: The impact of conceptual elaboration. Journal of Memory and Language, 64 (1), 18-31.

Memon, A., Zaragoza, M. S., Clifford, B., & Kidd, L. (2010). Inoculation or antidote? The effects of Cognitive Interview timing on false memory for forcibly fabricated events. Law & Human Behavior, 34, 105-117.


Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University (1984)
Memory, Cognition, Eyewitness Testimony, Children's Memory, Law and Psychology