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NCJ Number: 169854 Find in a Library
Title: Inaccuracies in Children's Testimony: Memory, Suggestibility, or Obedience to Authority?
Author(s): J F Meyer
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 175
Sponsoring Agency: Haworth Press, Inc
Binghamton, NY 13904
Publication Number: ISBN 0-7890-0237-X
Sale Source: Haworth Press, Inc
10 Alice Street
Binghamton, NY 13904
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This book examines children's testimony from several perspectives and suggests how children's abilities to testify accurately can be increased.
Abstract: The first chapter discusses children's memory in the courtroom and what they are able to remember. This is followed by a review of the literature on the effects of stress, prompting, and imagination on children's recall. The third chapter presents information on suggestibility in adults and children, and the fourth chapter examines the findings of research on children's suggestibility, including attention to sources of suggestibility. Another chapter reviews the research on obedience to authority and discusses how it can explain children's behavior as witnesses. The sixth chapter discusses Milgram's theory of obedience to authority, tying it to children as witnesses. The final chapter suggests ways to increase the accuracy of children's recall. Some suggestions are to avoid leading questions, use indirect and nonverbal techniques, use rehearsals that involve free recall, reduce the perceived authority of the interviewer, teach children about their role in the courts, train children to answer questions, and teach children to watch for misleading items. Directions for future research are outlined. 179 references and a subject index
Main Term(s): Juvenile witnesses
Index Term(s): Children in the courtroom; Competency to testify; Witness credibility
Note: Haworth Criminal Justice, Forensic Behavioral Sciences, and Offender Rehabilitation Series
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