Does free recall moderate the effect of mental context reinstatement instructions on children's cued recall?

Paul M. Dietze, Stefanie J. Sharman, Martine B. Powell, Donald M. Thomson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Cognitive Interview instructions increase children's recall of events; one important instruction is the mental reinstatement of context. We examined one factor that may affect mental context reinstatement: whether children had the opportunity to freely recall the event before answering cued recall questions. One hundred and fifty-two children aged 6, 9, or 11 years were interviewed twice about a staged event. The event consisted of an argument between two adults about whose turn it was to show the children a film. One week after the event, some of the children received mental context reinstatement instructions before having their cued recall tested. Some children also received a free recall test immediately before the cued recall test. In the second interview, 2 weeks after the first interview, all children freely recalled the event. The results showed no effects of mental context reinstatement instructions and no moderating effect of free recall on children's cued recall. The implications of these findings and directions for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)881-891
Number of pages11
JournalPsychology, Crime and Law
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • children's recall
  • investigative interview
  • mental context reinstatement

Cite this