The role of deception in P300 memory detection

Bruno Verschuere*, Joel P Rosenfeld, Michael R. Winograd, Elena Labkovsky, Roeljan Wiersema

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Purpose. P300 memory detection test is a neuroscientific procedure to assess memories stored in the brain. P300 memory detection can and is currently applied to assess criminal suspects on recognition of critical crime information. Contrasting memory detection with lie detection, researchers have argued that P300 memory detection does not involve deception. We empirically investigated this argument by manipulating deception between groups. Methods. Thirty-four community volunteers participated in a P300 memory detection test, answering either deceptively (deceptive condition) or truthfully (truth condition) to their own name. Results. P300 memory detection was significant in the truth condition, indicating that deceptive responding is not a prerequisite for valid P300 memory detection. However, there were clear indications that deceptive responding improved memory detection. Conclusions. Deception seems involved in the P300 memory detection test; and deceptive responding may add to test accuracy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)253-262
Number of pages10
JournalLegal and Criminological Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 1 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Applied Psychology


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