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Evidence Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

2017

Child testimony

Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Evidence

61. The Relation Between Young Children’S False Statements And Response Latency, Executive Functioning, And Truth–Lie Understanding., Shanna Williams, Elizabeth C. Ahern, Thomas D. Lyon Nov 2017

61. The Relation Between Young Children’S False Statements And Response Latency, Executive Functioning, And Truth–Lie Understanding., Shanna Williams, Elizabeth C. Ahern, Thomas D. Lyon

Thomas D. Lyon

This study examined relations between children’s false statements and response latency, executive functioning, and truth-lie understanding in order to understand what underlies children’s emerging ability to make false statements. A total of 158 (2- to 5-year-old) children earned prizes for claiming that they were looking at birds even when presented with images of fish. Children were asked recall (“what do you have?”), recognition (“do you have a bird/fish?”), and outcome (“did you win/lose?”) questions. Response latencies were greater when children were presented with fish pictures than bird pictures, particularly when they were asked recall questions, and ...


59. Ask Versus Tell: Potential Confusion When Child Witnesses Are Questioned About Conversations, Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon May 2017

59. Ask Versus Tell: Potential Confusion When Child Witnesses Are Questioned About Conversations, Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon

Thomas D. Lyon

Children’s potential confusion between “ask” and “tell” can lead to misunderstandings when child witnesses are asked to report prior conversations. The verbs distinguish both between interrogating and informing and between requesting and commanding. Children’s understanding was examined using both field (i.e., Study 1) and laboratory (i.e., Studies 2-4) methods. Study 1 examined 100 5- to 12-year-olds’ trial testimony in child sexual abuse cases, and found that potentially ambiguous use of ask and tell was common, typically found in yes/no questions that elicited unelaborated answers, and virtually never clarified by attorneys or child witnesses. Studies 2-4 ...


58. The Effects Of Secret Instructions And Yes/No Questions On Maltreated And Non-Maltreated Children’S Reports Of A Minor Transgression., Elizabeth C. Ahern, Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon Jan 2017

58. The Effects Of Secret Instructions And Yes/No Questions On Maltreated And Non-Maltreated Children’S Reports Of A Minor Transgression., Elizabeth C. Ahern, Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon

Thomas D. Lyon

This study examined the effects of secret instructions (distinguishing between good/bad secrets and encouraging disclosure of bad secrets) and yes/no questions (DID: “Did the toy break?” versus DYR: “Do you remember if the toy broke?”) on 262 4- to 9- year old maltreated and nonmaltreated children’s reports of a minor transgression. Over two-thirds of children failed to disclose the transgression in response to free recall (invitations and cued invitations). The secret instruction increased disclosures early in free recall, but was not superior to no instruction when combined with cued invitations. Yes/no questions specifically asking about the ...


57. Spatial Language, Question Type, And Young Children’S Ability To Describe Clothing: Legal And Developmental Implications., Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon Dec 2016

57. Spatial Language, Question Type, And Young Children’S Ability To Describe Clothing: Legal And Developmental Implications., Stacia N. Stolzenberg, Kelly Mcwilliams, Thomas D. Lyon

Thomas D. Lyon

Children’s descriptions of clothing placement and touching with respect to clothing are central to assessing child sexual abuse allegations. This study examined children’s ability to answer the types of questions attorneys and interviewers typically ask about clothing, using the most common spatial terms (on/off, outside/inside, over/under). Ninety-seven 3- to 6-year-olds were asked yes/no (e.g. “Is the shirt on?”), forced-choice (e.g., “Is the shirt on or off?”), open-choice (e.g., “Is the shirt on or off or something else?”), or where questions (e.g., “Where is the shirt?”) about clothing using a human ...