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The Productivity of Wh- Prompts in Child Forensic Interviews
Journal of Interpersonal Violence
  • Elizabeth C, Ahern, University of Cambridge
  • Samantha J. Andrews, University of Cambridge
  • Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Arizona State University
  • Thomas D. Lyon, University of Southern California

33 Journal of Interpersonal Violence 2007-2015 (2018).


Child witnesses are often asked wh- prompts (what, how, why, who, when, where) in forensic interviews. However, little research has examined the ways in which children respond to different wh- prompts and no previous research has investigated productivity differences among wh- prompts in investigative interviews. This study examined the use and productivity of wh- prompts in 95 transcripts of 4- to 13-year-olds alleging sexual abuse in child investigative interviews. What-how questions about actions elicited the most productive responses during both the rapport building and substantive phases. Future research and practitioner training should consider distinguishing among different wh- prompts.

Date of this Version
Citation Information
Elizabeth C, Ahern, Samantha J. Andrews, Stacia N. Stolzenberg and Thomas D. Lyon. "The Productivity of Wh- Prompts in Child Forensic Interviews" Journal of Interpersonal Violence (2018)
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