Dual-task interference and its influence on deception detection and memory
Blake, Chelsea K.
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Using a dual-task paradigm, I examined how engaging in executive function tasks impacted deception detection and memory performance. University students (N = 185) were randomly assigned to detect deception while also performing a concurrent monitoring, memory, planning, motor, or visual task, or no additional task (single-task control). Compared to those in the single-task control condition, participants in the memory and planning conditions were significantly less likely to be accurate when detecting deception. Those in the memory condition self-reported experiencing higher ratings of cognitive load and exhibited poorer recognition. Differences in decision-making processes could not account for these effects. The results suggest performance deficits in deception detection can be attributable to isolated cognitive demands; even simply adding a secondary task can be impactful. Investigative interviewers may be particularly disadvantaged when under different types of cognitive load while detecting deception.