Coaching, Truth Induction, and Young Maltreated Children's False Allegations and False DenialsUniversity of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series
AbstractThis study examined the effect of coaching (encouragement and rehearsal of false reports) and truth induction (a child-friendly version of the oath or general reassurance about the consequences of disclosure) on 4- to 7-year-old maltreated children's reports (N = 198). Children were questioned using free recall, repeated yes/no questions, and highly suggestive suppositional questions. Coaching impaired children's accuracy. For free recall and repeated yes/no questions, the oath exhibited some positive effects, but this effect diminished in the face of highly suggestive questions. Reassurance had few positive effects, and no ill-effects. Neither age nor understanding of the meaning and negative consequences of lying consistently predicted accuracy. The results support the utility of truth induction in enhancing the accuracy of child witnesses' reports.
Date of this Version5-15-2009
Citation InformationThomas D. Lyon, Lindsay C. Malloy, J A Quas and Victoria A. Talwar. "Coaching, Truth Induction, and Young Maltreated Children's False Allegations and False Denials" (2009)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/thomaslyon/126/