The influence of an early interview on long-term recall : a comparative analysis

Tizzard-Drover, Tracy (2003) The influence of an early interview on long-term recall : a comparative analysis. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

There is burgeoning participation by children in police investigations and in courtrooms as witnesses; therefore, there is significant concern about children's skill in recalling complete and accurate details. The author of the present study investigated one portion of this dynamic puzzle. The influence of early interviews on children's long-term recall of a traumatic event was evaluated by comparing the recall of three groups of 3- to 9-year-olds one year after their injury. One group had only one interview, a year after the injury; the second group had two interviews, one immediately after injury and the second one year after injury; and the third group had three interviews, immediately, 6 months and one year after injury. The percentage of information the children recalled after one year was assessed in regard to completeness of correct recall (percentage correctly recalled of what was actually relevant to the child) and accuracy (percentage correctly recalled from the total information recalled). It was found that recall memory was a function of age, the type of event being recalled, and the timing of the initial interview. The primary finding was that all children, regardless of age, showed extensive recall of the target event. However, having an interview immediately after the injury was associated with greater completeness of recall and accuracy for the 3- and 4-year-olds but did not make a difference for the older 5- to 9-year-olds. These results are suggestive of a social influence, namely that the highly structured and organized interview may have a beneficial effect on memory for some ages. Implications for questioning and testimony are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7040
Item ID: 7040
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 48-57.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: 2003
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--St. John's
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Memory in children; Long-term memory; Interviewing in law enforcement

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