Mental time travel ability and the Mental Reinstatement of Context for crime witnesses.

Journal article


Smith-Spark, JH, Bartimus, J and Wilcock, R (2016). Mental time travel ability and the Mental Reinstatement of Context for crime witnesses. Consciousness and Cognition. 48, pp. 1-10.
AuthorsSmith-Spark, JH, Bartimus, J and Wilcock, R
Abstract

Mental time travel ability marks how well the phenomenological aspects of events are mentally re-experienced during recall. The Cognitive Interview (CI) elicits eyewitness information. One of its techniques, Mental Reinstatement of Context (MRC), asks eyewitnesses to reinstate the incident's context mentally before recall. Fifty-six participants watched a simulated crime video. Self-report measures were then taken to estimate general mental time travel ability. Participants were questioned subsequently about the video. Eyewitness performance under MRC was compared with the CI's Report Everything (RE) technique, wherein eyewitnesses recall everything they can but with no invitation to mentally reinstate the context. There was no effect of interview condition on accuracy of recall; however, general mental time travel ability was positively associated with the amount of correct and incorrect information produced under MRC, but not RE, conditions. This is the first empirical demonstration that MRC instructions engage the mental time travel capacities they purport to.

KeywordsCognitive Interview; Eyewitness memory; Mental time travel; 1701 Psychology; 1702 Cognitive Science; 2203 Philosophy; Experimental Psychology
Year2016
JournalConsciousness and Cognition
Journal citation48, pp. 1-10
PublisherElsevier
ISSN1090-2376
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1016/j.concog.2016.10.002
Publication dates
Print24 Oct 2016
Publication process dates
Deposited20 Mar 2017
Accepted09 Oct 2016
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/871x3

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