The relationship between job status, interviewing experience, gender, and police officers' adherence to open-ended questions
Article first published online: 10 JAN 2011
2009 The British Psychological Society
Legal and Criminological Psychology
Volume 14, Issue 1, pages 51–63, February 2009
How to Cite
Smith, R. M., Powell, M. B. and Lum, J. (2009), The relationship between job status, interviewing experience, gender, and police officers' adherence to open-ended questions. Legal and Criminological Psychology, 14: 51–63. doi: 10.1348/135532507X262360
- Issue published online: 10 JAN 2011
- Article first published online: 10 JAN 2011
- Received 12 September 2007; revised version received 1 November 2007
Purpose. The current study examined whether several factors related to the job and demographic profile of police officers are associated with adherence to best-practice guidelines when interviewing children.
Method. One hundred and seventy-eight police officers completed a standardized (simulated) interview regarding an allegation of abuse by a 5-year-old child. Immediately prior to this interview, details were obtained from the officers' regarding their job status, gender, interview experience, the timing and nature of prior training/supervision, and experience outside the policing profession with young children.
Results. The results showed that timing of training was the only factor that related to interview performance. The proportion of open-ended questions among participants who completed their interviewer training course less than 1 month prior to the simulated interview was better than those who completed the training earlier. Interestingly, the performance of the latter group was identical to that of a group of participants who had not yet received any formal interview training. The implications of the findings are discussed, along with directions for future research.