CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, November 13, 2015

Ahern et al. on Child Forensic Interviews

Elizabeth C. Ahern , Samantha J. Andrews , Stacia N. Stolzenberg and Thomas D. Lyon (University of Cambridge , University of Cambridge , Arizona State University (ASU) - School of Criminology & Criminal Justice and University of Southern California - Gould School of Law) have posted The Productivity of Wh-Prompts in Child Forensic Interviews (Journal of Interpersonal Violence, Forthcoming) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Child witnesses are often asked wh-prompts (what, how, why, who, when, where) in forensic interviews. However, little research has examined the ways in which children respond to different wh-prompts and no previous research has investigated productivity differences among wh-prompts in investigative interviews. This study examined the use and productivity of wh-prompts in 95 transcripts of 4- to 13-year-olds alleging sexual abuse in child investigative interviews. What-how questions about actions elicited the most productive responses during both the rapport building and substantive phases. Future research and practitioner training should consider distinguishing among different wh-prompts.

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