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American Psychological Society, 2005, Los Angeles, CA Virtual line-ups: Can immersive virtual context reinstatement facilitate eye-witness recall? Rosanna.

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Presentation on theme: "American Psychological Society, 2005, Los Angeles, CA Virtual line-ups: Can immersive virtual context reinstatement facilitate eye-witness recall? Rosanna."— Presentation transcript:

1 American Psychological Society, 2005, Los Angeles, CA Virtual line-ups: Can immersive virtual context reinstatement facilitate eye-witness recall? Rosanna E. Guadagno, Ph.D. ** University of California, Santa Barbara Jeremy N. Bailenson, Ph.D. Stanford University Andy C. Beall, Ph.D. Jim Blascovich, Ph.D. Aleksandar Dimov University of California, Santa Barbara ** = presenting author

2 Overview Eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable. Eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable. Research has focused on increasing the reliability of eyewitness identification (e.g., Cutler, Penrod, & Martens, 1989). Research has focused on increasing the reliability of eyewitness identification (e.g., Cutler, Penrod, & Martens, 1989). The results of this research indicates that taking an eyewitness back to the scene of the crime may facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification. The results of this research indicates that taking an eyewitness back to the scene of the crime may facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification. However, it is often difficult to do this. However, it is often difficult to do this. To date, no one has ever examined whether a virtual recreation of the scene of the crime could also facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification. To date, no one has ever examined whether a virtual recreation of the scene of the crime could also facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification.

3 Advantages of a Virtual Context Can recreate the exact context in which a crime took place (e.g., weather, lighting) Can recreate the exact context in which a crime took place (e.g., weather, lighting) Can bring eyewitnesses back to crime scenes that are inaccessible (e.g., scene destroyed by fire) Can bring eyewitnesses back to crime scenes that are inaccessible (e.g., scene destroyed by fire) Can recreate conditions that no longer exist or are impractical (e.g., seasons, presence or absence of crowds or traffic) Can recreate conditions that no longer exist or are impractical (e.g., seasons, presence or absence of crowds or traffic)

4 Research Questions To determine whether Virtual Reality can be used to facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification by placing individuals in the context in which the crime occurred? To determine whether Virtual Reality can be used to facilitate accuracy in eyewitness identification by placing individuals in the context in which the crime occurred? To determine the conditions under which context detracts vs. facilitates recognition? To determine the conditions under which context detracts vs. facilitates recognition?

5 Method Participants witnessed a staged crime: Participants witnessed a staged crime: –a male confederate walked into the room where they were waiting and threw a phone. Following this staged crime, participants were asked to identify the perpetrator by viewing a line- up in either a virtual world or in a physical room with the line-up projected on the wall Following this staged crime, participants were asked to identify the perpetrator by viewing a line- up in either a virtual world or in a physical room with the line-up projected on the wall The room was either the same or different from the room in which the staged crime took place. The room was either the same or different from the room in which the staged crime took place. The perpetrator of the crime was present in half the line-ups and absent in the other half. The perpetrator of the crime was present in half the line-ups and absent in the other half.

6 Predictions We expected that We expected that –In terms of correctly identifying the perpetrator of the staged crime: There will be no difference between real and virtual rooms There will be no difference between real and virtual rooms There will be more correct identifications in the same room condition There will be more correct identifications in the same room condition –In terms of confidence in line-up selection: People may be more confident when recall cues (e.g., the context in which the crime took place or the presence of the perpetrator of the crime) are present People may be more confident when recall cues (e.g., the context in which the crime took place or the presence of the perpetrator of the crime) are present –There will be no relationship between correct responses and confidence

7 Staged Crime

8 “Same” Real and Virtual Room Real Room Virtual Room

9 “Different” Real and Virtual Room Real Room Virtual Room

10 Virtual Reality Equipment Virtual Realty Headset Gamepad used to make selections in the line-up

11 Line-up

12 Dependent Variables For the line-ups where the perpetrator was present: For the line-ups where the perpetrator was present: –Each participant was given a 0 (did not correctly identify the perpetrator) or 1 (did correctly identify the perpetrator). For the line-ups where the perpetrator was absent: For the line-ups where the perpetrator was absent: –Each participant was given a 0 (did not correctly reject the foils in the line-up) or 1 (did correctly reject the foils in the line-up). For all line-ups, there was a 1 in 7 (0.14) chance of making a correct identification or correct rejection (6 photos and 1 option to say he was not in the line-up) For all line-ups, there was a 1 in 7 (0.14) chance of making a correct identification or correct rejection (6 photos and 1 option to say he was not in the line-up) We also asked participants to report how confident they were in their responses. We also asked participants to report how confident they were in their responses.

13 Results: Perpetrator present in the Line-up a a a b Note: values with different subscripts are significantly different

14 Results: Perpetrator absent from the Line-up Note: values with different subscripts are significantly different a a a b

15 Results: Confidence in selection Participants who viewed the line-up with the perpetrator present were significantly more confident in their selections. Participants who viewed the line-up with the perpetrator present were significantly more confident in their selections. –This effect was most pronounced for participants who completed the line-up in the same room in which the crime took place. When the perpetrator was absent, participants who completed the line-up in a different room were significantly more confident in their selections. When the perpetrator was absent, participants who completed the line-up in a different room were significantly more confident in their selections. Confidence was not correlated with correct selection. Confidence was not correlated with correct selection.

16 Conclusions Correct identifications were greatest when all context cues matched the crime (line-up took place at the scene of the crime with the perpetrator present) regardless of whether this was real or virtual. Correct identifications were greatest when all context cues matched the crime (line-up took place at the scene of the crime with the perpetrator present) regardless of whether this was real or virtual. In the virtual scene of the crime, participants were not good at correctly rejecting the foils in the line- up. In the virtual scene of the crime, participants were not good at correctly rejecting the foils in the line- up. Confidence was greatest when the line-up took place at the scene of the crime, but this was not related to of identifications or rejections. Confidence was greatest when the line-up took place at the scene of the crime, but this was not related to of identifications or rejections.

17 Implications Virtual Environments can facilitate eyewitness identification at rates similar to the real context suggesting that there is potential for its use in law enforcement. Virtual Environments can facilitate eyewitness identification at rates similar to the real context suggesting that there is potential for its use in law enforcement. However, more research needs to be conducted to understand the usefulness of this technology for eyewitness identification. However, more research needs to be conducted to understand the usefulness of this technology for eyewitness identification.

18 Thank you! Phone: Phone: Web: Web: This research was supported by NSF Small ITR Grant award # This research was supported by NSF Small ITR Grant award #


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