Stephanie J. Platz is now working as a training evaluator in Washington, D.C.
Cross-Racial/Ethnic Eyewitness Identification: A Field Study1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 18, Issue 11, pages 972–984, September 1988
How to Cite
Platz, S. J. and Hosch, H. M. (1988), Cross-Racial/Ethnic Eyewitness Identification: A Field Study. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 18: 972–984. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1988.tb01187.x
This article was based on a thesis submitted by the first author to the University of Texas at El Paso in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the masters degree. We wish to thank Michael Bailey, Jeffrey Fogel, Ralph Hernandez, Perry Machioni, and Jim Wilkerson for posing as “customers” and “law interns”. We would also like to express our appreciation to the Southland Corporation (7–11), Circle K. and Good Times Stores for allowing this research to be conducted in their stores, and to Detective Kurt Flynn of the El Paso Police Department for constructing the photo lineups. In addition, we would like to thank Dr. John C. Brigham who provided valuable information about pitfalls in conducting this type of research, Robert K. Bothwell, G. William Lucker, and Gregory H. Dobbins who read earlier versions of this manuscript.
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Using a method similar to that of Brigham, Maass, Snyder, and Spaudling (1982), 86 adult convenience store clerks were asked to identify 3 confederate/customers, one Anglo-American, one black-American, and one Mexican-American who had visited their stores 2 hours earlier. Wilcoxon matched pairs signed-rank test showed that clerks were superior at identifying customers of their own racial or ethnic group, Z= 2.84, p < .002. For clerks who made an identification, the correlation between the recognition accuracy and confidence in their identification was not significant, rpbis (56)= .05. The results of this field study paralleled those found in most laboratory experiments of cross-racial/ethnic identification and demonstrated that Mexican-Americans are subject to the own/other groups identification accuracy phenomenon as well.