Credibility Assessment

Our research in this area has examined the effects of training to detect deception, the role of “investigator biases,” and the ability of individuals to distinguish between true and false denials, true and false confessions, and true and false alibis. In general, this research has indicated that training to detect deception can lead individuals to be more suspicious and thereby creates a bias towards deceit – particularly when that training focuses on non-diagnostic (non-verbal and paravocal) cues to deception.  However, when training includes more diagnostic indicators of deception (cognitive-based cues), performance can be enhanced, and proper interviewing tactics that encourage the provision of information and induce cognitive load can enhance the discriminability of these cues.  Our research continues to identify the most diagnostic approaches for eliciting information and, importantly, diagnostic cues to credibility.


Leach, A. M., Da Silva, C. S., Connors, C. J., Vrantsidis, M. R. T, Meissner, C. A., & Kassin, S. M. (2020). Looks like a liar? Beliefs about native and non-native speakers’ deception. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 34, 387-396.

Dianiska, R. E., Cash, D. K., Lane, S. M., & Meissner, C. A. (2019). The reciprocal nature of lying and memory: Memory confabulation and diagnostic cues to deception. In T. Docan-Morgan’s (Ed.), Handbook of deceptive communication (pp. 347-365). Palgrave.

Hauch, V., Sporer, S. L., Michael, S. W., & Meissner, C. A. (2016). Does training improve the detection of deception: A meta-analysis. Communication Research, 43, 283-343.

Vrij, A., Meissner, C. A., & Kassin, S. M. (2015). Problems in expert deception detection and the risk of false confessions: No proof to the contrary in Levine et al. (2014). Psychology, Crime, & Law21, 901-909.

Culhane, S. E., Kehn, A., Horgan, A. J., Meissner, C. A., Hosch, H. M., & Wodahl, E. J. (2013). Generation and detection of true and false alibi statements. Psychiatry, Psychology, & Law, 20, 619-638.

Evans, J. R., Michael, S. W., Meissner, C. A., & Brandon, S. E. (2013). Validating a new assessment method for deception detection: Introducing a psychologically based credibility assessment tool. Journal of Applied Research in Memory & Cognition, 2, 33-41.

Evans, J. R., Houston, K. A., & Meissner, C. A. (2012). A positive, collaborative, and theoretically-based approach to improving deception detection. Journal of Applied Research in Memory & Cognition, 1, 122-123.

Albrechtsen, J. S., Meissner, C. A., & Susa, K. J. (2009). Can intuition improve deception detection performance? Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 45, 1052-1055.

Kassin, S. M., Meissner, C. A., & Norwick, R. J. (2005). “I’d know a false confession if I saw one”: A comparative study of college students and police investigators. Law & Human Behavior, 29, 211-228.

Meissner, C. A., & Kassin, S. M. (2004). “You’re guilty, so just confess!” Cognitive and behavioral confirmation biases in the interrogation room. In D. Lassiter’s (Ed.), Interrogations, confessions, and entrapment (pp. 85-106). Kluwer Academic /Plenum Press.

Meissner, C. A., & Kassin, S. M. (2002). “He’s guilty!”: Investigator bias in judgments of truth and deception. Law & Human Behavior, 26, 469-480.