Date of Award
Bachelor of Science (BS)
Psychology, Criminal Justice and Sociology
Dr. John Bechtold
The purpose of this study was to test the effects of aroma on word recall and determine how aroma interacts with the memory strategy used in a paired-word associative memory task. Twenty-nine undergraduates were randomly assigned to a room diffusing either Doterra essential oil blend Motivate or pure peppermint essential oil. Students memorized a list of 20 word-pairs using either repetitive or elaborative rehearsal. Following a delay, students recalled the second word in the pair after being given the first word as a prompt. Participants using the elaboration memory strategy recalled more words than those using the repetition memory strategy. There was also a significant interaction on the perception of felt motivation between aromas and memorization strategies. This research may be helpful to consumers or students seeking to understand if any particular essential oil or oil blend facilitates cognitive functioning. Future research could compare several different aroma blends to see if they improve specific types of memory tasks.
Anders, Victoria Renee and Bechtold, John I., "Pure Essential Oil vs. Blend: Word Recall Memory Strategies" (2022). Honors Projects and Presentations: Undergraduate. 399.
IRB approval: 2021-048
Written as part of Honors 499