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OBJECTIVE: Examined the relationship between trauma and memory specificity and the importance in this of level of support received. METHOD: Fifty-two female undergraduates completed the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT; Williams and Broadbent, 1986), assessing memory specificity and the Traumatic Experiences Checklist (TEC; Nijenhuis, Van der Hart, and Vanderlinden, 1999), assessing qualitative aspects of trauma. RESULTS: In low-specific students, those who reported emotional abuse were less specific in their memory. The scores of students who had not received any support for the abuse showed a trend towards retrieval of less specific memories, as compared with those who had received support. CONCLUSION: Results provide evidence for an association between trauma (emotional abuse) and reduced memory specificity, and suggest that receiving support following the abuse might protect individuals from developing over-general memory.

Original publication

DOI

10.1348/014466504X20080

Type

Journal article

Journal

Br J Clin Psychol

Publication Date

03/2005

Volume

44

Pages

133 - 138

Keywords

Adolescent, Affect, Autobiography as Topic, Child Abuse, Female, Humans, Male, Memory, Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic, Surveys and Questionnaires