Self-Reported Current Practices in Child Forensic Interviewing: Training, Tools, and Pre-Interview Preparation

Behav Sci Law. 2017 May;35(3):253-268. doi: 10.1002/bsl.2290.


In child sexual abuse investigations, forensic interviewers within the Child Advocacy Center (CAC) model serve as neutral fact-finders for a team of professionals tasked with investigating and intervening in cases of alleged child sexual abuse. Although empirical evidence has led to the development of best-practice techniques and protocols, there is currently no universally adopted protocol in the field. The present research gathered detailed information from a national sample of real-world child forensic interviewers about their training and current practices, with a specific focus on assessing the information interviewers typically review prior to conducting child forensic interviews. Most notably, the survey revealed a lack of uniformity in interviewing protocols adopted and pre-interview preparation practices. Although rare, some interviewers reported using an allegation-blind interviewing approach, highlighting the need for future research on this and other under-studied techniques. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Abuse, Sexual / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Crime Victims / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Criminal Law / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic*
  • Self Report