Investigating Recognition Memory During a Line-Up Deception Task: An EEG Study

No Thumbnail Available
Issue Date
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This study investigated a new paradigm, combining previous findings of ERP line-up tasks and deception studies, to get a better understanding of the neurocognitive mechanism underlying recognition memory during a deception task. EEG measurements were recorded to track the neural responses of the participants during a visual line-up task, while participants both experienced a crime story from the victims’ viewpoint (i.e. tell the truth about the crime scene) and the culprits’ viewpoint (i.e. deception of the police by lying about the crimes scene). The behavioural findings demonstrate that reactions to fillers (neutral, not crime-related stimuli) are much faster than to target stimuli (crime-related stimuli). The P300 findings were in line with previous research to lie detection and recognition memory, and was influenced by the memory trace itself and not by revealing or not revealing this knowledge. The results from the P400-600 and the FN400 showed that participants in the culprit condition showed a consistent memory process of the made-up story, while suppressing the memory of the actual crime scene. The frontal N2 showed a novelty effect that was strengthened by lying, whereas the central N2 in contrast showed a target detection effect that was weakened by lying. Finally, we looked at the ERP components associated with response preparation (central response preparation component) and conflict monitoring (response-locked P2). The response preparation component was observed to be strongest when participants said they saw a crime-related stimulus (irrelevant of whether this was the truth or a lie), whereas the conflict monitoring component was observed to be especially present when participants concealed the knowledge of a crime-related stimulus. The combination of components makes it probably possible to distinguish between the different stimulus (‘target’ and ‘filler’) and response (‘lie’ and ‘truth’) conditions. This study provides information about recognition memory in a deception study, and introduces a promising new EEG paradigm.
Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen