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									Title: Stroop Tests
Purpose: Does the human brain comprehend words from colors?

Background information: When someone looks at a word, it is harder to identify the color
the word it is written in than the word itself.
 According to researchers from the University of Michigan, the Stroop effect emphasizes the
interference that automatic processing of words has the more mentally “effortful” task of
naming colors. The part of the brain, the anterior cingulate, responds to the Stroop effect in
different ways. Two conflicting signals are given off in the brain making the word easier to
The Stroop test was designed to see how selective attention works. According to Justice French,
people were tested to see how they respond selectively to certain kinds of information while
ignoring other information. When a person sees the word and color, the brain is tangled with
confusion when reading the Stroop Test. The brain reacts quicker to the word than what the
color the word is written in.

Hypothesis: If I write the name of a color in a different color ink, it will be harder to identify
the word than if I write the name of a color in the same color ink.
IV- The color of the word
DV- How many questions the person gets right

   -   Stroop test off of
   -   Notebook and pencil to record data
   -   Stopwatch
   -   Sample set of 12 people (2 seniors, 4 adults, 4 teenagers, 2 children) (make sure you
       have an even number of males and females)

   1. Print off stroop test
   2. Make an answer sheet for your convenience
   3. Gather first sample, explain the test, and remind them that you are only taking their first
   4. Begin test, start stopwatch, and mark down how many answers they get incorrect
   5. Record data any answers that sample got correct and the time it took them to complete
      the tests
   6. Repeat steps 3, 4, and 5 until all samples have been tested
Seniors   Time Box              Time Box        Number
          1                     2               Incorrect                    7. Analyze data
S-grandma 57 s                  1:21 s          0                        using the median of
E-grandpa 1:47                  2:34            6                        the data
Average   82 s                  1:58            3
Teenagers Time Box Time Box                      Number
                 1               2               Incorrect
Cailin           10s             23 s            0
Rachel           9s              21 s            0
Mitch            7s              23 s            2
Mark             17s             22s             0
Megan            21 s            23 s            0
Average          13 s            22 s            0

Adults          Time Box       Time Box        Number
                1              2               Incorerct
S- mom          18 s           47 s            0
S-dad           21 s           46 s            0
E-mom           17 s           41 s            1
E-dad           17 s           35 s            4
Average         18 s           42 s            1

Kids            Time Box        Time Box        Number
                1               2               Incorrect
Molly           20 s            1:12            8
Eddie           13 s            59 s            5
Average         17 s            1:06            7

Conclusion: Our data proves our hypothesis is right. The first box of the Stroop Test had the
words written in the same color ink of what the word said. The times for this box were faster
than the second box, which were words written in another color ink than what the word said.
We found that the middle ages were the best at completing the Stroop Test. The children had
slower times than the teenagers but they didn’t know exactly what they were doing. The
children’s brains didn’t react as fast as the teenagers because their brains are less developed.
The seniors also had to question us to make sure that they were going to do the Stroop Test
right. Some of the teenagers didn’t have to question what they had to do at all. They just did
what they were told to do. Teenage boys, especially, had the fastest times and adjusted to the
Stroop Test right away. Over all, the middle age groups adjusted their thought process the best
compared to the seniors and the children. A change that I would make in the future would be
to plan out how to record the data right away. At first, we weren’t going to have the people be
timed for how long it took them to complete the test; we were just going to record how many
they got wrong. We found that people could just take a really long time to figure out what the
right color was so they could get them all right and that information wouldn’t be as accurate as
the times. Because we didn’t record the times right away, we had to go back and retime the
person which was time consuming. Another change I would make would be to test more
children. I think that with just two children, the average times wouldn’t be as accurate as it
could be. This would allow us to really see if children’s brains don’t function as fast compared
to the teenagers or seniors.

Works Cited:

De Young, Raymond. "Stroop Test." School of Natural Resources and Environment |
        University of Michigan. 5 Jan. 2010. Web. 26 Sept. 2011.
        <>., Kurt At. "The Stroop Effect." Faculty Web Server. Justice
        French. Web. 26 Sept. 2011.

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