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Eliciting cues to true and false intentions by strategic questioning

Författare och institution:
Tuule Sooniste (Psykologiska institutionen)
University of Gothenburg
Datum för examination:
Prof. Amina Memon
Sammanfattning (abstract):
For many legal and intelligence settings it is necessary to assess whether a stated intention is true or false. The 9/11-Attack (NYC) demonstrates the potential value of increased accuracy in discriminating between true and false intentions. However, almost all previous research on deception detection has dealt with liars’ and truth-tellers’ statements about their past actions. It is suggested that interviewing strategically might be a way to successfully elicit cues that enable discrimination between true and false intentions. Study I examined the differences between lying and truth-telling suspects’ answers to questions about their intentions, and questions about the planning of their stated intentions. Half of the subjects planned for a non-criminal act (truth-tellers) and half planned for a mock-criminal act (liars). Truth-tellers were instructed to tell the truth about their intentions. Liars were asked to plan a cover story that masked their real intentions. All participants were interviewed before they could carry out their intentions. They received two sets of questions during the interview on; (1) their intentions (anticipated) and (2) the planning phase of their stated intention (unanticipated). The results showed that truth-tellers’ (vs. liars’) answers to the unanticipated question were significantly longer, more detailed and clearer. Study II examined how cues to true and false intentions are moderated when small cells of suspects are interrogated. The focus was on within-group consistency and content based analysis. The experimental set-up was similar to Study I, except that subjects were divided into dyads and quartets. The findings showed that cells of truth-tellers’ answers to the unanticipated questions were perceived as more consistent than answers given by cells of liars. Answers to the anticipated questions given by cells of liars and cells of truth-tellers were perceived to be equally consistent. Answers given by quartets were perceived to be less consistent than answers given by dyads for both anticipated and unanticipated questions. Liars’ (vs. truth tellers’) answers to the questions about their intentions included more information about why they needed to pursue the stated goal, whereas truth-tellers focused more on how the stated goal would be pursued. The overall results support the idea that strategic questioning is a promising way forward in eliciting cues to deception. It is argued that interview protocols aiming to discriminate between true and false intentions should target both the intentions as such, and the planning phase of the stated intention.
Ämne (baseras på Högskoleverkets indelning av forskningsämnen):
deception detection, true and false intention, strategic interviewing, unanticipated questions, cells of suspects, goal directed behavior, consistency
Postens nummer:
Posten skapad:
2013-12-09 12:38

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