File(s) under permanent embargo
A comparison of responses to substantive transition prompts in interviews with children
journal contributionposted on 01.01.2018, 00:00 authored by Rebecca Earhart, Meaghan DanbyMeaghan Danby, Sonja Brubacher, Martine Powell, Stefanie SharmanStefanie Sharman
This study examined children's responses to two alternate prompts used to transition to the substantive phase of an interview. Children ( N = 401) experienced four scripted events and were later interviewed. After rapport building, half of the children were asked, "Tell me what you're here to talk to me about today," whereas the other half were asked, "Tell me why you're here to talk to me today." Children's responses were coded as informative (e.g., nouns) or uninformative (e.g., "don't know"). The what prompt elicited more informative responses than the why prompt, and 7- to 9-year-olds were more informative than 5- to 6-year-olds regardless of the type of prompt they received. Given that the what prompt elicited more informative responses, the present study provides initial support for this phrasing when forensic interviewers transition to the substantive phase.