Interpersonal reality monitoring in the forensic context: Theoretical and practical adjustments

Sometimes individuals determine the veracity of their own memories ("did I actually experience the memorized event in reality or, did I imagine it?"), and sometimes they determine the veracity of others' memories ("Did s/he actually experience the described event or maybe s/he fabricated it?). Reality monitoring (RM) theory provides content indices for determining whether a specific memory is true or false; indicating, for example, that truthful memory contains more perceptual and contextual details than false memory. RM which originally developed for describing the process of determining the veracity of one's own memories has been applied to describe also the process of determining the veracity of others' memories ("interpersonal reality monitoring"; iRM). This application of RM to iRM was found to be appropriate in many studies of deception detection. Yet, in view of the factors that distinguish iRM from RM, we suggest here that, in order to increase its predictability in the forensic context, an adaptation of the RM framework to the field of deception is necessary. In this project, funded by the Israel Science Foundation (grant number 372/14), we addresses this adaptation of the RM framework.

NahariLab

Department of Criminology

Bar-Ilan University

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