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Title: Interrogative suggestibility and its association with mental health
Author: Coddington, Nicola
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2013
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Individuals who are prone to yield to leading questions and/or change answers under pressure are considered vulnerable to interrogative suggestibility (IS). This vulnerability can lead to false confession or inaccurate statements to the police or court. The first paper critically. reviewed 23 studies investigating IS with people with intellectual disability (ID), mental health problems and forensic participants using the Gudjonsson Suggestibility Scales (GSS) or modified versions of these. The findings show that modifying the initial stimulus on the GSS (auditory) to a dual modality improves recall, reduces yield to leading questions and the tendency to change answers. Patients with mental health disorders (i.e., attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder and conversion disorder) performed differently to the general population on the unmodified GSS. In forensic participant, confession retraction was associated with higher yield to leading questions and changing answers on the unmodified GSS where there was an ID. In conclusion, modification to the GSS initial stimulus to include a dual modality for people with ID improves recall and reduces IS when compared to the unmodified GSS. Modifications may also benefit forensic participants. Evidence is emerging that mental health problems may impact on components of IS. Overall the findings are compromised by methodological flaws. I The empirical paper investigated the association between IS and anxiety, fear of negative evaluation and fear of engulfment in 24 offenders with schizophrenia Anxiety uniquely predicted IS and was associated with bow people yield to leading questions rather than how they cope with interrogative pressure. Fear of engulfment uniquely predicted IS and was associated with how people change their original answers following negative feedback. Fear of negative evaluation did not predict IS . These findings suggest that offenders with schizophrenia are vulnerable to IS which may in some cases have resulted in erroneous testimony.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available