O Papel de diferentes audiências na acurácia do relato verbal de crianças

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Mariéle Diniz Cortez
Caio F. Miguel
Julio C. de Rose


The use of verbal reports serves as an important tool for obtaining information in different contexts, such as clinical, forensic, and research. Therefore, it is important to investigate variables that interfere with the accuracy of reports, particularly when individuals report about their own behavior (self-reports). The present study investigated effects of different audiences on self-reports of children in a situation in which a preferred item was made unavailable. Six children performed a computerized task in which each trial displayed an item (word, syllable, letter, or picture) and the child had to read/name the item and then, after listening the correct response by the computer’s loudspeaker, click on either a green or a red square to report whether the response had been correct or incorrect, respectively. Baseline sessions ended after 20 trials and children could choose a small prize. Only children with near 100% accurate selfreports advanced to the next phase, in which they earned points only for clicks on the green square after a correct reading/naming response. Points were not earned in trials in which the naming response was wrong or when the self-report was inaccurate. However, children had no trial-by-trial feedback about points earned; only after the last trial when the total number of points obtained was presented on the screen. Children had to report their score to an audience, consisting of either the computer, the experimenter, or a child. In this phase, participants needed to score 12 points to access the more preferred items, although the difficulty of the naming task was manipulated so that it was impossible to attain this score. Children could, nevertheless, obtain the more preferred item by inaccurately reporting a higher score. Establishment of an impossible requirement to obtain the preferred item disrupted correspondence for five children, both in the computerized task and in the reports to the audience. The results indicated that establishing a impossible number of points as a requirement to obtain a preferred item acted as an establishing operation that evoked responses that would be colloquially called deception, that probably have been successful in the participants’ histories to obtain otherwise inaccessible reinforcers. Correspondence in reports about the total points earned showed control by the specific audience and was higher for the computer, intermediate for the experimenter, and lower for the colleague.

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Diniz Cortez, M., F. Miguel, C., & C. de Rose, J. (2019). O Papel de diferentes audiências na acurácia do relato verbal de crianças. Acta Comportamentalia: Revista Latina De Análisis Del Comportamiento, 27(3). Recuperado a partir de https://journals.unam.mx/index.php/acom/article/view/70630