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Effect of Intra- Versus Post-Interview Feedback During Simulated Practice Interviews About Child Abuse

NCJ Number
Child Abuse & Neglect Volume: 32 Issue: 2 Dated: February 2008 Pages: 213-227
Martine B. Powell; Ronald P. Fisher; Carolyn H. Hughes-Scholes
Date Published
February 2008
15 pages
This study examined whether instructor feedback (over and above practice and instruction) was beneficial in promoting the use of open-ended questions in child abuse interviews by investigative interviewers.
Instructor feedback that was offered intermittently during the practice interviews was more effective in enhancing interviewers’ use of open-ended questions in the immediate post-training assessment interview than feedback that was offered at the end of the practice interviews. However, both types of feedback were beneficial over no feedback at all, and the performance of all participants declined during the 3-month post-training period. This research is relevant to trainers of investigative interviewers because there is currently large variability in the type of feedback employed in training programs. This is one of the first studies to empirically demonstrate that different types of feedback may be differentially effective in improving the performance of investigative interviewers. Forensic interviewing of children is a complex task that involves a broad array of skills and competencies. This study focused on a particular element of investigative interview training, expert feedback from an instructor. In addition to examining the effect of feedback (over and beyond the role of instruction and practice per se), the study compared the relative effectiveness of two feedback procedures, intra-interview and post-interview feedback. Intra-interview feedback was speculated to be superior to post-interview feedback for several noted reasons. Tables, references