Eyewitness testimony -effect of age

The effect of age on EWT

Following experiments are all Natural or Quasi experiments becuase the independent variable (age) varies naturally

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the effect of age on EWT

Brassard -found that younger children (4 year olds) were more likely to be affected by the cues given by the interviewer than older children (8 year olds).

Memon et al -found that the accuracy of 60-82 year olds dropped when identification was delayed for a week.

Parker and Carranza- found that primary school children were more likely to choose someone from a mock up line, but they were also more likely to make errors.

Yarney-compared young and old adults and found that older adults were less confident but not less acurate when recalling aconfederate.

Anastasi and Rhodes-Found that younger (18-25) and middle age (35-45) were more accurate in identifying the target faces than older adults (55-78)

Evaluation

Own age bias - the apparent superior performance of younger adults may have been because the faces to be recognised were from their age groups-

Anastasi and Rhodes also found  that all age groups were accurate in identifying target photographs from their age group.

Brigham and Melpas - different experience hypothesis -the less contact we have with people from different age groups, the poorer our ability to discriminate between indivilduals in this groups.

Research methods

Contrived studies -pps may not behave as they would in everyday life.May not take task seriously or may look for cues.

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