Differences in suggestibility between 5–6 and 10–11 year olds: the relationship with self confidence

Aldert Vrij, N. Bush

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Differences in suggestibility and recall between 5–6 and 10–11 year olds were investigated. It was hypothesized that younger children would be more suggestible than older children and that differences in self confidence between older and younger children would influence these differences. It was also predicted that older children would recall more information than younger children, and that this age difference would be less strongly influenced by self confidence. Forty-one 5 and 6 and fifty-six 10 and 11 year olds were interviewed about a video they had witnessed. Several factual and misleading questions were asked, and the percentage of correct answers to the factual questions (to measure recall) and the percentage of incorrect answer to the misleading questions (to measure suggestibility) were calculated. The level of self confidence of the children was measured with six items of the Behavioural Academic Self Esteem Scale (BASE), reflecting self confidence. The outcomes supported the hypotheses: Younger children were more suggestible than older children and this difference disappeared when controlled for self confidence. Older children gave mere information about the event than younger children, and these age differences were, to much less extent, influenced by their self confidence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-138
Number of pages12
JournalPsychology, Crime & Law
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2000


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