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Pub. Type:
Report
Title:
New Approach to Interviewing Children: A Test if Its Effectiveness
Subtitle/Series Name:
National Institute of Justice Research in Brief
Abstract:
Thirty-four third-graders between the ages of 8 and 9 and 58 sixth-graders between the ages of 11 and 12 witnessed two staged events and were interviewed about each. Advanced undergraduate psychology majors conducted practice interviews for a staged event similar to one that would be staged for practice-interview purposes under real-life conditions. Sheriffs deputies interviewed the children ('target interviews') about another staged event which was the study's stand-in for an incident under actual investigation. The cognitive interview is a 3-phase procedure. The first phase focuses on the development of rapport between interviewer and child and on setting the ground rules for subsequent questions. Phase two involves the use of techniques designed to elicit from the child as complete a narrative account or report of the alleged crime as possible. The methods used in phase three encourage the child to clarify and expand upon what was reported in the narrative account. The study found that with or without a practice cognitive interview, cognitive interviewing significantly improved children's recall performance, particularly for the sixth-graders. 2 notes, 11 references, and 1 exhibit source
Issue/No.:
NCJ 135011
Producer:
United States Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, National Institute of Justice
Place of Production:
Washington, DC

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