Melissa Colloff

Melissa Colloff
University of Birmingham · School of Psychology

BSc, MSc, PhD

About

45
Publications
18,124
Reads
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422
Citations
Additional affiliations
September 2012 - October 2013
University of Leicester
Position
  • Master's Student
September 2010 - May 2011
Edith Cowan University
Position
  • Research Assistant

Publications

Publications (45)
Article
Eyewitness identifications play a key role in the justice system, but eyewitnesses can make errors, often with profound consequences. We used findings from basic science and innovative technologies to develop and test whether a novel interactive lineup procedure, wherein witnesses can rotate and dynamically view the lineup faces from different angl...
Article
Adult female sexual assault victims who appear emotional are rated as more credible by jurors, which has been termed the emotional victim effect. Two explanations of this effect have been proposed: The expectancy violation theory and the compassionate-affective account. To date, the emotional victim effect in child victims, or the application of th...
Article
Children are frequently witnesses of crime. In the witness literature and legal systems, children are often deemed to have unreliable memories. Yet, in the basic developmental literature, young children can monitor their memory. To address these contradictory conclusions, we reanalyzed the confidence-accuracy relationship in basic and applied resea...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives This study examined patterns of sexual violence against adults and children in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic to inform sexual violence prevention, protection, and response efforts. Design A prospective cross-sectional research design was used with data collected from March to August 2020. Setting Kenya. Participants 317 adults, 2...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased negative emotions and decreased positive emotions globally. Left unchecked, these emotional changes might have a wide array of adverse impacts. To reduce negative emotions and increase positive emotions, we tested the effectiveness of reappraisal, an emotion-regulation strategy that modifies how one thinks about...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased negative emotions and decreased positive emotions globally. Left unchecked, these emotional changes might have a wide array of adverse impacts. To reduce negative emotions and increase positive emotions, we tested the effectiveness of reappraisal, an emotion-regulation strategy that modifies how one thinks about...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased negative emotions and decreased positive emotions globally. Left unchecked, these emotional changes might have a wide array of adverse impacts. To reduce negative emotions and increase positive emotions, we tested the effectiveness of reappraisal, an emotion-regulation strategy that modifies how one thinks about...
Article
Full-text available
We examined how encoding view influences the information that is stored in and retrieved from memory during an eyewitness identification task. Participants watched a mock crime and we varied the angle from which they viewed the perpetrator. In Experiment 1, participants (N = 2904) were tested with a static photo lineup; the viewing angle of the lin...
Article
Full-text available
Unfamiliar simultaneous face matching is error prone. Reducing incorrect identification decisions will positively benefit forensic and security contexts. The absence of viewindependent information in static images likely contributes to the difficulty of unfamiliar face matching. We tested whether a novel interactive viewing procedure that provides...
Article
Full-text available
A typical police lineup contains a photo of one suspect (who is innocent in a target-absent lineup and guilty in a target-present lineup) plus photos of five or more fillers who are known to be innocent. To create a fair lineup in which the suspect does not stand out, two filler selection methods are commonly used. In the first, fillers are selecte...
Article
Full-text available
This article discusses the latest research that reveals that children seem to be facing new risks of sexual violence in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic. Patterns of sex offending against children coinciding with the implementation of lockdowns, curfews, and school closures may be shifting since the pandemic began. In particular, emerging evidenc...
Preprint
This article discusses the latest research that reveals that children seem to be facing new risks of sexual violence in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic. Patterns of sex offending against children coinciding with the implementation of lockdowns, curfews, and school closures may be shifting since the pandemic began. In particular, emerging evidenc...
Article
Full-text available
This article discusses the latest research that reveals that children seem to be facing new risks of sexual violence in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic. The evidence suggests there have been changes in patterns of sexual offenses against children coincident with lockdowns, curfews, and school closures. In particular, emerging evidence from Kenya...
Article
Full-text available
Over the past 10 years, Oosterhof and Todorov’s valence–dominance model has emerged as the most prominent account of how people evaluate faces on social dimensions. In this model, two dimensions (valence and dominance) underpin social judgements of faces. Because this model has primarily been developed and tested in Western regions, it is unclear w...
Preprint
We compare patterns of sexual violence against adults (n = 317) and children (n = 224) in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to inform sexual violence prevention and protection efforts. The data we analyse were coded from interviews conducted by human rights defenders who were assisting survivors in obtaining vital services. We found that...
Article
Full-text available
The public is increasingly exposed to news about eyewitness memory errors. This study draws from the strategic memory regulation framework [Goldsmith, M., Koriat, A., & Weinberg-Eliezer, A. (2002). Strategic regulation of grain size memory reporting. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 131(1), 73–95. https://doi.org/10.1037/0096-3445.131.1...
Preprint
Unfamiliar simultaneous face matching is error prone. Reducing incorrect identification decisions will positively benefit forensic and security contexts. The absence of view-independent information in static images likely contributes to the difficulty of unfamiliar face matching. We tested whether a novel interactive viewing procedure that provides...
Preprint
This research report explores the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on patterns of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in Kenya. The research entailed conducting interviews across the 47 counties of Kenya, including in informal settlements, to document sexual violence and other violations of adults and children during the COVID-19 pandemic. The...
Preprint
This research report explores the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on patterns of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in Kenya. The research entailed conducting interviews across the 47 counties of Kenya, including in informal settlements, to document sexual violence and other violations of adults and children during the COVID-19 pandemic. Ther...
Preprint
Eyewitness identifications play a key role in the justice system, but eyewitnesses make errors, often with profound consequences. Errors are more likely when the witness is of a different race to the suspect, due to a phenomenon called the Own Race Bias (ORB). ORB is characterized as an encoding-based deficit, but has been predominantly tested usin...
Preprint
Recently, the field of eyewitness identification has undergone a radical transformation, using signal-detection theory, models, and associated analyses to answer the important applied question of how police should test a witness’s memory of a criminal perpetrator. Here, we used these analytical techniques and the basic science of face memory to exa...
Preprint
Full-text available
Over the last ten years, Oosterhof and Todorov’s valence-dominance model has emerged as the most prominent account of how people evaluate faces on social dimensions. In this model, two dimensions (valence and dominance) underpin social judgments of faces. Because this model has primarily been developed and tested in Western regions, it is unclear w...
Preprint
Full-text available
Children are frequently victims and witnesses of crime. In the witness identification literature, children are deemed to have unreliable memories. Yet, in developmental research, even young children display appropriate metacognitive cues that reflect their accuracy. To address these contradictory findings, we asked children in young- (4–6 years), m...
Article
Full-text available
The criminal justice system should consider the confidence an eyewitness expresses when making an identification at the time the initial lineup procedure is conducted. High confidence expressed at this time typically indicates high accuracy in the identification. Because the suspect identification – not filler identifications or no identifications...
Article
Full-text available
There is widespread belief in the legal system that alcohol impairs witness testimony. Nevertheless, most laboratory studies examining the effects of alcohol on witness testimony suggest that alcohol may affect the number of correct but not incorrect details recalled. However, it is difficult to draw conclusions because sample sizes, testing paradi...
Article
Full-text available
Presenting the police suspect alongside similar-looking people (a lineup) results in more accurate eyewitness identification decisions than presenting the suspect alone (a showup). But why are lineups better than showups? Diagnostic-feature-detection theory suggests that lineups enhance witnesses’ ability to discriminate between innocent and guilty...
Article
Full-text available
Smith, Wells, Smalarz, and Lampinen (2017) claim that we (Colloff, Wade, & Strange, 2016) were wrong to conclude that fair lineups enhanced people’s ability to discriminate between innocent and guilty suspects compared to unfair lineups. They argue our results reflect differential-filler-siphoning, not diagnostic-feature-detection. But a manipulati...
Conference Paper
Unfamiliar face matching is error-prone. An accurate decision involves correctly assigning between-person variability to different identities and within-person variability to the same identity. To support image-based comparisons we have developed a novel interactive procedure, which involves rotating a facial image to different orientations. We inv...
Article
Full-text available
Acute alcohol intoxication during encoding can impair subsequent identification accuracy, but results across studies have been inconsistent, with studies often finding no effect. Little is also known about how alcohol intoxication affects the identification confidence–accuracy relationship. We randomly assigned women (N = 153) to consume alcohol (d...
Article
Full-text available
Middle-aged and older adults are frequently victims and witnesses of crime, but knowledge of how identification performance changes over the adult lifespan is sparse. We asked young (18–30 years), middle-aged (31–59 years) and older (60–95 years) adults (N = 2,670) to watch a video of a mock crime and to attempt to identify the culprit from a fair...
Article
Full-text available
Eyewitness identification studies have focused on the idea that unfair lineups, in which the suspect stands out, make witnesses more willing to identify that suspect. We asked whether unfair lineups—featuring suspects with distinctive features—also influence subjects’ ability to distinguish between innocent and guilty suspects, and their ability to...
Article
Full-text available
Eyewitness-identification studies have focused on the idea that unfair lineups (i.e., ones in which the police suspect stands out) make witnesses more willing to identify the police suspect. We examined whether unfair lineups also influence subjects' ability to distinguish between innocent and guilty suspects and their ability to judge the accuracy...
Article
Full-text available
Rationale False face recognition rates are sometimes higher when faces are learned while under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol myopia theory (AMT) proposes that acute alcohol intoxication during face learning causes people to attend to only the most salient features of a face, impairing the encoding of less salient facial features. Yet, there is...
Article
Full-text available
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Article
Full-text available
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Article
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Article
Full-text available
Mock witnesses sometimes report using criminal stereotypes to identify a face from a lineup, a tendency known as criminal face bias. Faces are perceived as criminal-looking if they appear angry. We tested whether matching the emotional appearance of the fillers to an angry suspect can reduce criminal face bias. In Study 1, mock witnesses (n = 226)...
Article
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the " verbal o...

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