[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The effect of the power dynamic between co-witnesses on memory conformity for images was investigated. Participant– confederate pairs were first presented with 50 images on a computer and then were randomly assigned to one of three social power role combinations analogous to those present in the workplace: manager and subordinate, subordinate and manager, or collaborators with equal power and status. After role assignment (but without ever engaging in the role-related tasks), pairs were tested on whether each of 100 images (50 old and 50 new) had or had not been shown previously. Confederates always responded before participants. Subordinates were significantly less likely to conform than managers. Findings are discussed in light of the work-related facet of social power and memory distortion. Memory can be largely a social phenomenon. Both memory encoding and memory retrieval can be influenced by external factors, such as distractions during encoding and recalling the details of a crime with a co-witness during retrieval. Memory research has shown that what one person says can influence another person's recollections (e.g., Gabbert, Memon, & Wright, 2006; Meade & Roediger, 2006; Schwartz & Wright, 2012; Wright, Gabbert, Memon, & London, 2008). Thus, one's original memory of an event is not always what one reports subsequently during recall with another individual present. In general, if one eyewitness reports incorrect information in the presence of another witness, this second witness will be more likely to report the same incorrect information than someone who had been asked to recall the details of the crime alone. Factors such as co-witness status (e.g., actor vs. bystander) and perceived encoding duration have been shown to moderate the memory conformity effect (Carlucci, Kieckhaefer, Schwartz, Villalba, & Wright, 2011; Gabbert, Memon, & Wright, 2007). The present study examines how the manager–employee power dynamic between dyads moderates memory conformity. The conformity literature posits two reasons why indivi-duals conform: informational influence and normative influ-ence (Campbell & Fairey, 1989). Informational influence is driven by a desire to be accurate, so an individual conforms be-cause he or she believes that someone else's report is correct. For example, Gabbert et al. (2007) found that believing an-other witness had viewed an event for longer increased mem-ory conformity to that witness' responses. Normative influence is based on the desire to maximize positive social outcomes; people may conform to avoid disagreement with others, even if they feel that the others are wrong (Asch, 1955; Baron, Vandello, & Brunsman, 1996; Deutsch & Gerard, 1955). Another factor that may influence memory conformity is the nature of the power dynamic between reporting co-witnesses. Social science research and theory generally distinguish between two types of power: social and personal. Social power (i.e., power over other people) is characterized by interdepen-dence and control over important resources, with the powerless person disproportionately depending on the more powerful person (e.g., Keltner, Gruenfeld, & Anderson, 2003). One example of social power is a manager's control over her or his employees through the administration of rewards and punishments (i.e., the manager–employee rela-tionship commonly present in the workplace). Another exam-ple of social power is a teacher's influence over her or his students through evaluation, feedback, and critique. Personal power, on the other hand, is the ability to ignore the influence of others, to control one's own outcomes, and to be personally independent (e.g., Galinsky, Magee, Gruenfeld, Whitson, & Liljenquist, 2008). The present study focused on social power. Most research on social power and conformity suggests that those in powerful positions should be more resistant to social influence than those in less powerful positions. Research on social power and persuasion, for example, has shown that power can validate an individual's existing views (Brinol, Petty, Valle, Rucker, & Becerra, 2007) and is asso-ciated with endorsing resoluteness and resisting attitude change (Eaton, Visser, Krosnick, & Anand, 2009). Power may be an impediment to experiencing empathy (Galinsky, Magee, Inesi, & Gruenfeld, 2006) and increases the psycho-logical distance that one feels from others (Smith & Trope, 2006) while motivating one to act in accordance with one's own disposition or attitudes (e.g., Chen, Lee-Chai, & Bargh, 2001; Galinsky, Gruenfeld, & Magee, 2003; Galinsky et al., 2008). Finally, powerful individuals have been shown to perceive less need for input from others, even when advice could help them perform better (See, Morrison, Rothman, & Soll, 2011). For these reasons, one would expect powerful individuals to exhibit less memory conformity than less powerful individuals. However, research on power, attention, and goal pursuit shows that rather than being uniformly and carelessly resis-tant to influence, powerholders can attend carefully and give credence to any stimulus that facilitates their own goal attainment. This research shows that powerholders have flex-ible attention that can vary on the basis of the expectations and responsibilities that are salient and important to them (e.g., Guinote, 2008; Overbeck & Park, 2001, 2006), and
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Eyewitness identification decisions from 1,039 real lineups in England were analysed. Identification procedures have undergone dramatic change in the United Kingdom over recent years. Video lineups are now standard procedure, in which each lineup member is seen sequentially. The whole lineup is seen twice before the witness can make a decision, and the witness can request additional viewings of the lineup. A key aim of this paper was to investigate the association between repeated viewing and eyewitness decisions. Repeated viewing was strongly associated with increased filler identification rates, suggesting that witnesses who requested additional viewings were more willing to guess. In addition, several other factors were associated with lineup outcomes, including the age difference between the suspect and the witness, the type of crime committed, and delay. Overall, the suspect identification rate was 39%, the filler identification rate was 26% and the lineup rejection rate was 35%.
Law and Human Behavior 08/2012; 36(4):257-65. · 2.16 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study examined whether recalling an event with a co-witness influences children's recall. Individual 3-5-year-olds (n = 48) watched a film with a co-witness. Unbeknown to participants, the co-witness was watching an alternative version of the film. Afterwards both the co-witness and the participant answered questions about the film together (public recall), and the degree to which children conformed to the co-witness's alternative version of events was measured. Subsequently participants were questioned again individually (private recall). Children also completed false belief and inhibitory control tasks. By separating errors made in public and private, the results indicated that both social conformity (32% of errors) and memory distortion (68% of errors) played a role in co-witness influence. Inhibitory control predicted the likelihood of retracting errors in private, but only for children who failed (r = .66) rather than passed false belief tasks (r = -.10). The results suggest that children with a theory of mind conform in the company of the co-witness to avoid social embarrassment, while those a poor theory of mind conform on the basis of an inability to inhibit the co-witness's response. The findings contribute to our understanding of the motivations responsible for co-witness conformity across early childhood.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: After controlling for initial confidence, inaccurate memories were shown to be more easily distorted than accurate memories. In two experiments groups of participants viewed 50 stimuli and were then presented with these stimuli plus 50 fillers. During this test phase participants reported their confidence that each stimulus was originally shown. This was followed by computer-generated responses from a bogus participant. After being exposed to this response participants again rated the confidence of their memory. The computer-generated responses systematically distorted participants' responses. Memory distortion depended on initial memory confidence, with uncertain memories being more malleable than confident memories. This effect was moderated by whether the participant's memory was initially accurate or inaccurate. Inaccurate memories were more malleable than accurate memories. The data were consistent with a model describing two types of memory (i.e., recollective and non-recollective memories), which differ in how susceptible these memories are to memory distortion.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A large number of people completed one of two versions of the empathizing quotient (EQ) and systemizing quotient (SQ). One version had the negatively phrased items all re-worded. These re-worded items were answered more rapidly than the original items, and for the SQ produced a more reliable scale. Subjects gave self-assessments of empathizing and systemizing, and these were moderately correlated, r ≈ .6, with their respective quotients. Females had on average higher empathizing scores and males had on average higher systemizing scores. If a female-male pair was chosen at random, the female would have the higher empathizing score about two-thirds of the time, and the males would have the higher systemizing score about two-thirds of the time.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(2):e31661. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: When two or more people witness an event together, the event report from one person can influence others' reports. In the current study we examined the role of age and motivational factors on peer influence regarding event reports in adolescents and young adults. Participants (N=249) watched a short video of a robbery then answered questions with no co-witness information or with information believed to be from a co-witness. Public and private response conditions were included to explore motivations for peer influence. Co-witness information influenced participants' responses, although the effect was equally strong in the private and the public co-witness conditions. Peer influence on event reports was steady across a large age range (11- to 25-year-olds).
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: When groups of people remember an event, the order in which they discuss their memories is important. In three experiments, a response order effect was shown in which participants believed the first speaker to be more accurate and more confident than a subsequent speaker. Further, participants were more likely to report as their own memory what the first speaker reported than what a subsequent speaker reported. The experiments showed that the response order effect was not due to intrinsic characteristics of what the first speaker said. Even when participants chose the response order themselves and the speakers' dialogue was counterbalanced, participants still believed that the first speaker was more accurate and confident than a subsequent speaker. Because in most situations the person who introduces a particular topic into a discussion is more accurate, people may assume that this is true, even when the response order is random.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Many statistics packages print skewness and kurtosis statistics with estimates of their standard errors. The function most often used for the standard errors (e.g., in SPSS) assumes that the data are drawn from a normal distribution, an unlikely situation. Some textbooks suggest that if the statistic is more than about 2 standard errors from the hypothesized value (i.e., an approximate value for the critical value from the t distribution for moderate or large sample sizes when α = 5%), the hypothesized value can be rejected. This is an inappropriate practice unless the standard error estimate is accurate and the sampling distribution is approximately normal. We show distributions where the traditional standard errors provided by the function underestimate the actual values, often being 5 times too small, and distributions where the function overestimates the true values. Bootstrap standard errors and confidence intervals are more accurate than the traditional approach, although still imperfect. The reasons for this are discussed. We recommend that if you are using skewness and kurtosis statistics based on the 3rd and 4th moments, bootstrapping should be used to calculate standard errors and confidence intervals, rather than using the traditional standard. Software in the freeware R for this article provides these estimates.
Behavior Research Methods 02/2011; 43(1):8-17. · 2.12 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Juror and jury research is a thriving area of investigation in legal psychology. The basic ANOVA and regression, well-known by psychologists, are inappropriate for analysing many types of data from this area of research. This paper describes statistical techniques suitable for some of the main questions asked by jury researchers. First, we discuss how to examine manipulations that may affect levels of reasonable doubt and how to measure reasonable doubt using the coefficients estimated from a logistic regression. Second, we compare models designed for analysing the data like those which often arise in research where jurors first make categorical judgments (e.g., negligent or not, guilty or not) and then dependent on their response may make another judgment (e.g., award, punishment). We concentrate on zero-inflated and hurdle models. Third, we examine how to take into account that jurors are part of a jury using multilevel modelling. We illustrate each of the techniques using software that can be downloaded for free from the Internet (the package R) and provide a web page that gives further details for running these analyses.
Legal and Criminological Psychology. 01/2011; 16(1):90 - 125.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The goal of this research was to examine whether memories for actions can be affected by information reported by another person. In two studies, pairs of participants performed 48 of a set of 96 actions. In Study 1, both members of the pairs performed the same actions, and in Study 2, they performed different actions. One week later, the members of the pairs were questioned together about whether they had or had not done all 96 actions. What one person reported greatly influenced what the other person reported for both correct and incorrect responses. This influence was maintained when the participants were later tested individually, and the participants described having pictorial memories for doing many of the actions that they had not done but had merely been suggested.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Purpose. To examine the relationship between perceived memory characteristics and age.Method. Participants rated the reliability and honesty of children's memory for one of two events. The children's ages varied from 3- to 18-years-old.Results. Participants (N = 612) believed that memory reliability increased with age, but the observed effect was non-linear. Perceived reliability increased rapidly for children from 3 to 6 years. After this, male participants believed memory reliability increased, but less than in early childhood. Female participants did not think memory reliability increased in middle childhood and adolescence. Further effects involving type of event, age of participant, and the gender of the eyewitness were observed for honesty and the relationship between these attributes and beliefs in guilt.Conclusions. These findings stress the need for more research on development trends of memory in middle childhood and adolescence.
Legal and Criminological Psychology. 08/2010; 15(2):195 - 207.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Does expert testimony on forensic interviews with children help adults distinguish between poorly conducted and well-conducted interviews? This study evaluates the effects of social framework expert testimony regarding child witnesses in a case involving allegations of child sexual abuse. A 2 (Expert Testimony: present or absent) × 3 (Child Forensic Interview Quality: poor, typical, or good) × 2 (Child's Age: 4- or 10-year-old) factorial design was used to examine whether expert testimony is prejudicial or beneficial to jurors (N = 463). The results revealed that, without expert testimony, mock jurors did not consider the forensic interview quality when reaching a verdict. However, with expert testimony, mock jurors were more likely to render guilty verdicts if the interview quality was good versus poor. Further expert testimony increased mock jurors' knowledge about child witnesses. These findings suggest that expert testimony related to the impact of interview techniques on the reliability of children's reports may assist fact-finders in evaluating child abuse cases.
Law and Human Behavior 05/2010; 35(2):152-64. · 2.16 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: People are more accurate at recognizing faces from their own ethnic group than at recognizing faces from other ethnic groups. This other-ethnicity effect (OEE) in recognition may be produced by a deficit in recollective memory for other-ethnicity faces. In a single study, White and Black participants saw White and Black faces presented within several different visual contexts. The participants were then given an old/new recognition task. Old responses were followed by remember-know-guess judgments and context judgments. Own-ethnicity faces were recognized more accurately, were given more remember responses, and produced more accurate context judgments than did other-ethnicity faces. These results are discussed in a dual-process framework, and implications for eyewitness memory are considered.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Many researchers studying the effectiveness of working in groups have compared group performance with the scores of individuals combined into nominal groups. Traditionally, methods for forming nominal groups have been shown to be poor, and more recent procedures (Wright, 2007) are difficult to use for complex designs and are inflexible. A new procedure is introduced and tested in which thousands of possible combinations of nominal groups are sampled. Sample characteristics, such as the mean, variance, and distribution, of all these sets are calculated, and the set that is most representative of all of these sets is returned. The user can choose among different ways of conceptualizing the meaning of most representative, but on the basis of simulations and the fact that most subsequent statistical procedures are based on the mean and variance, we argue that finding the set with the mean and variance most similar to the means of the representative statistics for all of the sets is the preferred approach. The algorithm is implemented in a stand-alone C++ executable program and as an R function. Both of these allow anyone to use the procedures freely.
Behavior Research Methods 02/2010; 42(1):36-41. · 2.12 Impact Factor