Forensic psychology, Sex offenders -- Behavioral assessment, Deception, Truthfulness and falsehood, Interviewing in psychology, Sex offenders -- Psychology
The ability to detect deception, in everyday social interactions and psychological evaluations, can literally mean the difference between life and death. Beyond physiological and nonverbal techniques for detecting deception, research has focused on criteria designed to evaluate the content of verbal statements to distinguish between true or actually experienced events versus internally manufactured or fabricated events. Criteria from two techniques that have received empirical support, criteria-based content analysis and reality monitoring, were used to create an 11-item Deception Detection Checklist (DDCL). In this study, 130 college undergraduates used the DDCL to rate the exculpatory statements of two accused child molesters: one truthful, the other untruthful. The 11 items composing the DDCL, as well as a measure of perceived truthfulness, were all scored on 7-point Likert-type scales. Nine of the 11 items on the DDCL significantly differentiated between the true and untrue statements in the predicted direction. Overall scores on the DDCL indicated that the false statement was rated as significantly more deceptive than the true statement. The DDCL possessed good reliability, and a series of factor analyses provided strong support for the construct validity of the measure. The 7 psychometrically strongest items from the DDCL included variables assessing the extent to which statements included clarity of detail, spatial details, temporal details, and contextual details, as well as the relevance, reconstructability, and realism of the statement. These results indicate that subjects were able to use this measure to reliably differentiate between true and false statements made by accused child molesters.
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Johnston, S., Candelier, A., Powers-Green, D., and Rahmani, S. (2014). Attributes of Truthful Versus Deceitful Statements in the Evaluation of Accused Child Molesters. SAGE Open. DOI: 10.1177/2158244014548849