Detecting Deception in Children: An Experimental Study of the Effect of Event Familiarity on CBCA Ratings

Iris Blandon-Gitlin, Kathy Pezdek, Martha Rogers and Laura Brodie
Law and Human Behavior 29(2), April 2005, pp 187-197

The CBCA is the most commonly used deception detection technique worldwide. Pezdek et al. (2004) used a quasi-experimental design to assess childrenrsquos accounts of a traumatic medical procedure; CBCA ratings were higher for descriptions of familiar than unfamiliar events. This study tested this effect using an experimental design and assessed the joint effect of familiarity and veracity on CBCA ratings.

Children described a true or a fabricated event. Half described a familiar event; half described an unfamiliar event. Two CBCA-trained judges rated transcripts of the descriptions. CBCA scores were more strongly influenced by the familiarity than the actual veracity of the event, and CBCA scores were significantly correlated with age. CBCA results were compared with results from other measures. Together with the results of K. Pezdek et al. (2004) these findings suggest that in its current form, CBCA is of limited utility as a credibility assessment tool.

Leave a Reply