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Purpose. Two studies evaluated the effects of question type and of brief pre-interview training, involving instructions and practice, on the number of correct answers and errors given by children in a structured interview.

Methods. A total of 157 children aged from nine to 13 were interviewed about a visit to a science centre with both misleading and non-misleading open and closed questions. The children also rated their confidence in each of their answers. Half the children received pre-interview training designed to discourage compliance and guessing.

Results. In Study 1 pre-interview training decreased commission errors to misleading questions, but also decreased the number of correct responses to non-misleading questions. In Study 2 a revised training package decreased errors for misleading questions without impacting on correct responses.

Conclusions. Brief pre-interview interventions can reduce children's compliance with misleading questions in experimental situations. Both studies provided some support for the cognitive processing hypothesis that the confidence-accuracy relationship will be stronger for open than for closed questions.