The Cognitive Interview (CI) is a well-established protocol for interviewing witnesses. The current article presents a study space analysis of laboratory studies of the CI together with an empirical meta-analysis summarizing the past 25 years of research. The study space comprises 57 published articles (65 experiments) on the CI, providing an assessment of the boundary conditions underlying the analysis and application of this interview protocol. The current meta-analysis includes 46 published articles, including 20 articles published since the last meta-analysis conducted a decade earlier (Ko¨hnken, Milne, Memon, & Bull, 1999). Reassuringly for practitioners, the findings of the original meta-analysis were replicated with a large and significant increase in correct details and a small increase in errors. In addition we found that there were no differences in the rate at which details are confabulated. Importantly, the effect sizes were unaffected by the inclusion of recent studies using modified versions of the CI. The CI appeared to benefit older adult witnesses even more than younger adults. We highlight trends and gaps in research and discuss how our findings can inform policy and training decisions.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/christian_meissner/57/