Decision time and confidence predict choosers' identification performance in photographic showups

Melanie Sauerland, Anna Sagana, Siegfried L Sporer, John T Wixted

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

In vast contrast to the multitude of lineup studies that report on the link between decision time, confidence, and identification accuracy, only a few studies looked at these associations for showups, with results varying widely across studies. We therefore set out to test the individual and combined value of decision time and post-decision confidence for diagnosing the accuracy of positive showup decisions using confidence-accuracy characteristic curves and Bayesian analyses. Three-hundred-eighty-four participants viewed a stimulus event and were subsequently presented with two showups which could be target-present or target-absent. As expected, we found a negative decision time-accuracy and a positive post-decision confidence-accuracy correlation for showup selections. Confidence-accuracy characteristic curves demonstrated the expected additive effect of combining both postdictors. Likewise, Bayesian analyses, taking into account all possible target-presence base rate values showed that fast and confident identification decisions were more diagnostic than slow or less confident decisions, with the combination of both being most diagnostic for postdicting accurate and inaccurate decisions. The postdictive value of decision time and post-decision confidence was higher when the prior probability that the suspect is the perpetrator was high compared to when the prior probability that the suspect is the perpetrator was low. The frequent use of showups in practice emphasizes the importance of these findings for court proceedings. Overall, these findings support the idea that courts should have most trust in showup identifications that were made fast and confidently, and least in showup identifications that were made slowly and with low confidence.

Original languageEnglish
Article number0190416
Pages (from-to)e0190416
Number of pages12
JournalPLOS ONE
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Journal Article
  • CALIBRATION
  • MEMORY
  • EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATION
  • ACCURACY RELATIONSHIP
  • FACE RECOGNITION
  • REMEMBER/KNOW JUDGMENTS
  • UPS
  • LATENCY
  • POLICE LINEUPS
  • CURVES

Cite this