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Narrative practice may foster comfort but not enhance cognition in adult witness interviews about a mock sexual assault
journal contributionposted on 02.09.2020, 00:00 authored by Sonja Brubacher, Stefanie SharmanStefanie Sharman, Nina J Westera, Hamida Zekiroski, Meaghan DanbyMeaghan Danby, Martine Powell
The present study tested the effectiveness of narrative practice on adult witnesses’ reports about a mock sexual assault. Narrative practice is a rapport-building activity that involves recounting a neutral or pleasant event prior to discussing the target topic. Engaging in narrative practice tends to enhance children’s reporting, but its utility with adults is unknown. Adults (n = 62) 18- to 62-years-old viewed a 7-minute video of a mock sexual assault and then were questioned with an open-ended protocol that began with narrative practice or not. Results showed that narrative practice did not appear to aid memory retrieval but may have increased comfort for some participants. Findings are discussed with regard to interviewing practice.