If I were to do my research again I think I would look deeper into the cultural influences and considerations that determine whether an abused child would be classified as a reliable eyewitness. I think this would be extremely interesting to look into as different cultures may classify and view abuse differently. While a more in-depth analysis of this factor may have provided additional perspectives and insight, I don’t think it would have impacted my conclusion. I believe an area of research that significantly strengthened my argument, was my research into the biological explanation, I believe with that I was able to provide clear empirical evidence that supported my claim, that was hard to refute. While researching many questions emerged that I wasn’t expecting for example; is it the abuse itself that causes a child’s deficits or is the situation and factors surrounding the abuse that plays the most crucial influence? This question was hard to address as many papers argues for different ideas, however, when looking at the research holistically it is clear to see that because of the complexity of a child’s cognition it would be far too reductionistic to solely blame one factor.
My research has been successful so far as I have been able to establish two clear arguments, of which , I have drawn upon different aspects, enabling me to reach a nuanced conclusion. However, my EE has significantly more studies in support of one argument. This could be because of a slight personal bias, combined with the fact that there is substantially more research available. I will address this, keeping in mind that the studies I use are reliable and appropriate for my research question. I’ve learned a substantial amount about the field of psychology, in particular, that of child cognitive psychology, but also about what constitutes a reliable experiment. My EE has helped me considerably in being able to develop my ability to critical analysis research. These skills have helped build my understanding of psychology as has enabled me to think deeper about what particular studies conclude and the strength and reliability behind that conclusion.
One thing I’ve learned
I have learn’t a lot today, in particular as i’m doing my EE about child abuse and the extent abused children can be reliable eyewitnesses, I learn’t a lot about the statistics of abuse and how abuse has huge impacts in the cognitive development of the child. This is turn why in many cases, children’s abuse allegations can never be fully investigate and often result in a lack of convictions as many argue that this causes them to be unreliable and unfit to testify against the abuser. Thus this is a very controversial topic and the research conducted has major positive but also negative implications.
What I’m proud of
I am proud that today I was able to finish my 1000 word draft, therefore I have less stress continuing on and I can carry on my research without having to worry about the deadline. I am really appreciative of this EE I think it helped me a lot as having a long chunk of time enabled me to really think about my research question and how I want to answer it and I realised that it was too broad for me to go fully in-depth into it, considering we only have 4000 words. Therefore I refined my topic to focus on particular children who have suffered from violence and if this makes a difference in their memory reliability and susceptibility.
What I’ll be doing next
Next I will be conducting more research into factors and the supporting studies about abuse that impact it has on children’s memory reliability. I think I also need to organise my all ready existing research just so I have a more rounded view of the direction my essay is going. Lastly I think that I need to investigate the opposing claim, and find research that says children can be reliable witness, research that fully concluded that children can be used as reliable witness will be hard to find , therefore I think I will have to look for research that states they can be used as reliable witnesses under certain and set conditions, and that will be my apposing claim.
I first found this topic to be exceptionally interesting when we watched a TEDx video about psychotherapy. It had never occurred to me that our memory, something so fundamental to our being, can be so easily manipulated to such an extent. I was then curious about the fields in which they rely on memory so heavily, such as the judicial system, and how this knowledge affects the processes, and if children used in these processes are more prone to the manipulation. This relates to me as I want to study either child Psychology or law at university. Therefore this topic combines both of my interests. This is an important issue as researching children’s memories can significantly improve the way we use child witnesses in court but also can provide insight into how to effectively use them, namely questioning techniques. My research question attempts to address the extent to which children can be used as reliable eyewitnesses and why.