In the current study, 126 undergraduate students read a case summary describing an armed robbery of a convenience store, involving one eyewitness, and then viewed one of five brief videotapes of an eyewitness identification procedure. Confidence ratings were manipulated as 80% v. 100%: Type of explanation offered for changes in confidence consisted of social, memory-based or none. Results indicated increased perceptions of eyewitnesses were associated with confidence consistency, rather than type of explanation. Perhaps providing any explanation for changes in confidence drew attention to the inconsistency and magnified its effect on perceptions. Further, when the eyewitness provided one estimate of confidence, participants perceived them as more credible compared to confidence inflation condition. Implications for these results at trial are discussed.
Paiva, Melissa, "I Can Explain! Understanding Perceptions of Eyewitnesses as a Function of Type of Explanation and Inconsistent Confidence Statements" (2009). Psychology Theses. Paper 2.