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PSY 300 (10)
Chapter 6

Chapter 6 notes psychology in the law

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Ryerson University
PSY 300
Tara M Burke

Chapter 6- Child Victims and Witnesses HISTORY ­ Salem trials: children lied and said they witnessed the defendants perform supernatural feats/ wirchcraft. RECALL FOR EVENTS ­ Children are capable of accurately recalling forensically relevant details of events that is accurate ­ Fabricating: Making false claims ­ Martensville Babysitting Case: thoughts that their babysitter was abusive, other children at the babysitting service admit to being abused and the babysitters were arrested. Later found that inappropriate interview techniques were used on the children (leading questions and bribery) ­ When asking children to use free-narrative to recall events, their accuracy in reporting is comparable to an adults, however, lies come up with direct questioning. ­ Direct questions requiring yes or no answers are most problematic for preschoolers ­ Children have a hard time answering yes/no questions because they require recognition rather than using recall (Melynk, Crossman and Scullin) ­ Children are more suggestible than adults because: 1) Social compliance: children respond to interviewers in the maner they think the interviewer desires - want to respond in a way they think is desireable even if they din’t understand the question 2) Developmental changes to the cognitive system - Differences in the way children encode, store and retrieve memories - Children misattribute where memories came from ­ Procedures to aid child witnesses with recalling information… 1) Anatomically detailed dolls: consistent with the male or female anatomy. Helps children recall instances of sexual abuse. The use of these dolls can provide inaccurate results 2) Criterion-based content analysis (CBCA): uses criteria to distinguish truth from false statements made by kids 3) Statement Validity Analysis (SVA): distinguishes truthful or false statements made by kids containing three parts: A structured interview of the child witness, a systematic analysis of the verbal content of the child’s statements and the application of the statement validity checklist 4) Step-Wise interview: Series of steps used to start the interview with the least leading and directive type of questioning followed by more specific questioning (most commonly used in Canada) 5) Narrative Elaboration: Interview where children learn to organize their stories into categories: Participants, settings, actions, conversation, & consequences. (Allow children to view drawings and use visual cues) 6) National Institute of child health and human development (NICHD) Interview: Open-ended questioning with two types of prompts. Time prompts, have child fill in a timeline. Or question prompts, children are asked to elaborate through interviewer asking questions 7) Cognitive Interview RECALL MEMORY FOLLOWING A LONG DELAY ­ False memory syndrome: client has false beliefs that they were sexually abused as a child but have no memory of this abuse until they enter therapy to deal with a different psychological problem (depression or substance abuse). ­ Lindsay and Reid, 5 things to consider when determing the accuracy of a recovered memory: 1) Age at the time of abuse: unlikely to remember before age 2 2) Techniques used to recover memory: hypnosis nd guided i
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