Are the elderly always poorer witnesses? A meta-analysis of moderator variables

Natalie Martschuk, Kerstin Wilhelm, Siegfired L. Sporer

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

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Abstract

In this meta-analysis we investigated the influence of the age of eyewitnesses on person identifications. While younger eyewitnesses generally showed better identification performance than the elderly, this effect was moderated by a variety of variables. The present meta-analysis identified the moderator variables that affected the differences in correct and false identification rates between the two age groups (k = 24; N = 3061), using fixed and mixed effects models. Moderator analyses revealed that the elderly benefitted more from longer exposure to the perpetrator's face than younger witnesses (OR = 1.04). Compared to simultaneous testing, the sequential lineup presentation reduced the differences between the age groups for hit rates (OR = .92) but not for false alarm rates (OR = 4.04). Longer retention intervals influenced correct identifications of the elderly much more than those of the younger witnesses (OR = 2.36). Results will also be discussed in terms of Sporer's (2001) in-group/out-group model, which predicts an own-age advantage.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEAPL 2010
Subtitle of host publicationTowards a positive legal psychology
Pages10
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventConference of the European Association of Psychology and Law (EAPL) - Gothenburg, Sweden, Sweden
Duration: 15 Jun 201018 Jun 2010

Conference

ConferenceConference of the European Association of Psychology and Law (EAPL)
CountrySweden
Period15/06/1018/06/10

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