Combining skin conductance and forced choice in the detection of concealed information

E.H. Meijer*, F.T.Y. Smulders, J. Johnston, H.L.G.J. Merckelbach

*Corresponding author for this work

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An advantage of the concealed information polygraph test (CIT) is that its false positive rate is determined on statistical grounds, and can be set a priori at arbitrary low levels (i.e., few innocents declared guilty). This criterion, however, inevitably leads to a loss of sensitivity (i.e., more guilty suspects declared innocent). We explored whether the sensitivity of a CIT procedure could be increased by adding an independent measure that is based on an entirely different psychological mechanism. In two experiments, we explored whether the accuracy of a CIT procedure could be increased by adding Symptom Validity Testing (SVT), a relatively simple, forced-choice, self-report procedure that has previously been used to detect malingering in various contexts. Results of a feigned amnesia experiment but not from a mock crime experiment showed that a combination measure of both tests yielded better detection than either test alone.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)814-822
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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