Assignment 3: Choosing the Research Paper Topic and Developing an Annotated Bibliography
Part 1: Choosing a Research Topic
From your examination of the literature dealing with the three topics of interest to you through M1 Assignment 1, narrow down your focus to the one topic that interests you the most. Be sure to choose a topic that is a driving force in contemporary forensic psychology and associated services.
Once you choose a topic, you should condense it and state it in the form of a research question or a thesis statement. Explain the topic in terms of its importance in the field. Your topic must be narrow so that you can adequately cover the topic in a 15- to 25-page paper. (For example, posttraumatic stress disorder [PTSD] would be far too broad a topic. A more focused topic within this might be researching the efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapy in treating returning veterans with PTSD.)
Provide a 1- to 2-page overview of your topic, illustrating how it is a current and important topic in forensic psychology.
All written assignments and responses should follow APA rules for attributing sources.
Note: Your instructor will approve or provide you feedback on the chosen topic. In cases where there are other students studying the same topic, the instructor will consult with you about modifying the topic or even selecting another one.
Part 2: Building an Annotated Bibliography
This part of the assignment focuses on building an annotated bibliography for your chosen research topic.
Throughout this module, expand your research by including a minimum of twelve peer-reviewed scholarly resources and the contact information for one expert interview (the interview can be conducted via e-mail or telephone or in person at a later date).
Your research should include a combination of the following types of sources:
Empirical research—including at least one example of qualitative research
At least one expert interview
At least two landmark studies
Note: While minimums are specified above, you are encouraged to include more than one expert interview, one qualitative research study, or two landmark studies to create the right balance of studies to effectively address your topic.
You may visit the page titled “Researching Your Chosen Topic” in Module 1 to read more about sources relevant to your research paper.
(Schedule this early in the course.)
Use the Argosy University online library resources to find, explore, and research these types of sources. To identify an appropriate expert for a personal interview, look for an author of one of the articles that you find interesting; this should be an author you would consider an interesting person to interview, especially if you were left with some questions after reading a particular study he or she had authored. You may also find this author interesting if his or her views contradict what other scholars have found about your topic.
Faculty members of Argosy University around the country, other universities, and forensic areas of education and service are also good choices for interviews.
False Confessions and Annotated Bibliography
In the recent period, there has been an increasing focus on the issue of false confessions in the criminal justice system. This is due to the continued application of DNA evidence, leading to exoneration of individuals serving various sentences including life. False confessions refer to oral or written statements by a suspect admitting guilt to a crime he/she did not commit. False confessions lead to wrongful convictions and miscarriage of justice. Confessions provide admissible evidence in the criminal justice system. As such, most suspects who give false confessions are most likely to face a conviction. There are various reasons why people may give false confessions. Two of the reasons include mental disorders and poor interrogation methods, such as coercion into admittance of committing a crime.
This paper examines how interrogators can make informed decisions by promoting reliable confessions and taking into consideration certain suspect characteristics that may influence confessions.
Making informed decisions during interrogations is critical in avoiding miscarriages of justice. Wrongful convictions lead to incarceration of innocent people, while the real perpetrators of crimes roam free. Wrongful convictions increase the risks to the larger society since those who are at risk of committing crimes remain free while the innocent are imprisoned. This gives them a chance to commit multiple crimes before they be arrested. Psychological science plays a critical role in helping investigators to apply appropriate interrogation methods, and thus reducing the incidences of wrongful convictions. The topic focuses on guidelines that can help interrogators to minimize errors that lead to wrongful convictions. Poor interrogation methods such as coercion and accusatory methods can lead to a suspect making false confessions. There is also need for interrogators to cross-examine eyewitness reports since they can contribute to false confessions. The topic also focuses on suspect characteristics that increase the likelihood of false confessions. Interrogators can look out for certain suspect characteristics such as mental illness, adolescence, personality traits, and others that can lead to false confessions.
Kassin, S. M., Drizin, S. A., Grisso, T., Gudjonsson, G. H., Leo, R. A., & Redlich, A. D. (2010;2009;). Police-induced confessions: Risk factors and recommendations. Law and Human Behavior, 34(1), 3-38. doi:10.1007/s10979-009-9188-6
This is a qualitative research study that examines the influence of police interrogation methods on false confession rates, which relates to the topic on promoting reliable confessions.
Safarik, Mark E,M.S., V.S.M., Burgess, Ann W,D.N.Sc, A.P.R.N., & Burgess, A. G., D.B.A. (2012). FALSE CONFESSION vs. investigative logic. Forensic Examiner, 21(1), 8-17. Retrieved from https://login.libproxy.edmc.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.libproxy.edmc.edu/ docview/1239519408?accountid=34899
This is a qualitative review. The study examines the various reasons that lead suspects to making false confessions.
Mnookin, J. L. (2015). Constructing evidence and educating juries: The case for modular, made- in-advance expert evidence about eyewitness identifications and false confessions. Texas Law Review, 93(7), 1811.
This is a qualitative study. The study examines the role of psychological experts in eyewitness identification and evidence relating to false confessions.
Narchet, F. M., Meissner, C. A., & Russano, M. B. (2010;2011;). Modeling the influence of investigator bias on the elicitation of true and false confessions. Law and Human Behavior, 35(6), 452-465. doi:10.1007/s10979-010-9257-x
This is a theoretical article. The article is concerned with investigator bias using the Russano et al. (2005) paradigm. Investigator bias increases false confessions.
Leding, J. K. (2012). False memories and persuasion strategies. Review of General Psychology, 16(3), 256-268. doi:10.1037/a0027700
This is a theoretical article. The article examines how persuasion strategies lead to development of false memories. The article examines various false memory paradigms.
Yang, Y., Guyll, M., & Madon, S. (2017). The interrogation decision-making model: A general theoretical framework for confessions. Law and Human Behavior, 41(1), 80-92. doi:http://dx.doi.org.libproxy.edmc.edu/10.1037/lhb0000220
This is a theoretical article. The article examines the efficacy of interrogation decision- making model in enhancing accuracy of interrogations.
Leo, R. A. (2009). False confessions: causes, consequences, and implications. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 37(3): 332-343.
This is a landmark study. The study is important since it looks at the causes, consequences and implications of false confessions.
Frenda, S. J., Berkowitz, S. R., Loftus, E. F., & Fenn, K. M. (2016). Sleep deprivation and false confessions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 113(8):2047-2050.
This is a landmark study. The study analyses the link between suspects’ sleep deprivation patterns and false confessions.
Shaw, J., & Porter, S. (2015). Constructing rich false memories of committing crime. Psychological Science, 26(3), 291-301. doi:10.1177/0956797614562862
This landmark study aims at proving that certain memory tactics can influence people to recount events that never occurred.
Perillo, J. T., & Kassin, S. M. (2011). Inside interrogation: The lie, the bluff, and false confessions. Law and Human Behavior, 35(4), 327-37. doi:http://dx.doi.org.libproxy.edmc.edu/10.1007/s10979-010-9244-2.
This is an empirical study. The study examines the impact of bluff tactic of interrogation on false confessions.
Snook, B., Brooks, D., & Bull, R. (2015). A lesson on interrogations from detainees: Predicting self-reported confessions and cooperation. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 42(12), 1243- 1260. doi:10.1177/0093854815604179
This is an empirical study. The study asserts that a humanitarian interviewing style can improve the accuracy of confessions by suspects.
Expert Interview: Julia Shaw, University of Bedfordshire. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org