The Psychology of Wrongful Convictions

Summary

Forensic Psychology plays a major role within our criminal justice process. From police procedures (such as interviewing witnesses); legal and court procedures; to wrongful convictions, psychological research can make a difference.  This project investigates issues such as eyewitness memory, identification evidence and legal procedures with the aim to not only further theoretical knowledge but also improve procedures within the legal system

Supervisor(s)

Dr Celine van Golde

Research Location

School of Psychology

Program Type

Masters/PHD

Synopsis

This project contains multiple streams of research looking at both eyewitness recall memory (i.e. testimonies) and recognition memory (i.e. identifications) in both children and adults.  The project further focuses on memories for both one off and repeated events (e.g. crimes, domestic violence, CSA).

Various factors such as Memory Blindness, Retrieval Induced Forgetting, Face Matching Taks and Line Up Tasks can be investigated.  Additionally, the influence of modern technology (e.g. smart phones) and the media on memory are of interest.  Various methodologies will be used include online testing and virtual reality.  This project also works with industry partners such as the police force and legal practiioners.

Additional Information

HDR Inherent Requirements

In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Example of inherent requirement may include:

- Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
- Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
- Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
- Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
- Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
- Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
- Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
- Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
- Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence;
- Hold a current scuba diving license;
- Hold a current Working with Children Check;
- Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)

You must consult with your nominated supervisor regarding any identified inherent requirements before completing your application.

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Keywords

wrongful convictions; eyewitness testimony; false memories; eyewitness identifications; children; adults; interviewing; media; technology

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 2461