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dc.contributor.advisorZajac, Rachel
dc.contributor.authorMartyn, Elise
dc.identifier.citationMartyn, E. (2012). Picture this: Visual aids facilitate children’s, adolescents’ and adults’ eyewitness recall. (Thesis, Master of Science). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractDespite increasing evidence attesting to the fallibility of eyewitness memory, information gathered from eyewitnesses remains critical to the outcome of many criminal investigations. It is not surprising then, that much time and many resources have been invested into the development of effective interview techniques. However, current techniques fail to maximise on two important aspect of eyewitness information; volume and accuracy. Drawing has been established as an effective technique for facilitating the quality and quantity of children’s and adults’ verbal accounts of events they have participated in or observed. There is also evidence to suggest that using provided visual aids, such as drawings or photographs, may facilitate recall in the same way. This research has however, been limited to child samples and has not been tested in a forensic paradigm. To address these gaps in the literature, we compared drawing with other visual aids across age groups in an eyewitness paradigm. Child, adolescent, and adult participants viewed a short film depicting a non-violent crime and were then interviewed about the event following a brief delay. The interview consisted of two free recall accounts. Following the first free recall account, participants were asked to describe the event again, using either their own drawing, a provided drawing, a photograph, or without using a visual aid (control). Interviews were transcribed verbatim and coded for the type and accuracy of information reported. All of the visual aids elicited more accurate recall, relative to the control condition, and participants’ own drawings and provided drawings also elicited a greater volume of information compared with the control group. Furthermore, all three visual aids were effective in reducing the volume of incorrect information provided by children, relative to the control group. When taking into account how visual aids might be applied in a forensic setting, witnesses’ own drawings are likely to be more easily applied and more time effective than other visual aids. We consider various explanations as to how visual aids facilitate witnesses’ recall.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.titlePicture this: Visual aids facilitate children’s, adolescents’ and adults’ eyewitness recall.
dc.language.rfc3066en of Science of Otago
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
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