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Taste Perception

based on 267 ratings
Author: Shelly Smith

Grade Level: 1st to 5th; Type: Psychology

Objective:

This project examines whether people’s perceptions of taste are influenced by their sight.

Research Questions:

Can the color of a food or drink affect a person’s perception of its taste? or Can our eyes fool our taste buds?

Materials:

  • Three containers of apple juice
  • Red and green food coloring
  • 60 small, clear plastic cups
  • 20 test subjects
  • Paper
  • Pencil

Experimental Procedure:

  1. With the food coloring, dye one container of juice red and one container of juice green.
  2. Pour a couple of inches of juice into each cup so that you have 20 cups of red juice, 20 cups of green juice, and 20 cups of uncolored juice.
  3. Place one cup of each color of juice in front of a test subject.
  4. Ask your subject to taste the red juice and tell you what flavor it is.
  5. Ask your subject to taste the green juice and tell you what flavor it is.
  6. Ask your subject to taste the uncolored juice and tell you what flavor it is.
  7. Record their answers.
  8. Repeat steps 3 to 7 for all of your subjects.
  9. Analyze your results. Did the color of the juice affect your subjects’ perceptions of their flavors? Did people mis-identify the flavors in keeping with the colors. (For example: Did they think the red juice tasted like fruit punch or cherry?)

Terms/Concepts: Taste buds, Sense of Taste, Sense of Sight

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