Presentation Title

The Role of Consequence Salience and Evidence Threshold in Perceptions of Child Neglect

Format of Presentation

Poster to be presented the Friday of the conference

Abstract

The present study used vignette scenarios of a case of child neglect to explore the influence of salient consequences and certainty in abuse (i.e., level of evidence) on perceptions of child neglect, child credibility, likelihood of reporting, and responsibility towards the child. Undergraduate students (N = 199) were randomly assigned to read one of nine different vignettes. The study was a 3 (Consequences: child, adult, control) x 3 (Levels of additional evidence: none, moderate, strong) between-subjects design. After reading the scenario, participants provided judgements of their likely future actions and rated perceptions of the child. Results showed participants were most likely to report to both social services and the police when the consequences of the abuse were more child-focused [F(2, 198) = 8.05, p < .001, ƞp2 = .08, F(2, 198) = 13.97, p < .001, ƞp2 = .13, respectively] than when they were adult-focused or in the control condition. However, salient consequences did not impact the likelihood of contacting either the child’s father or another informal option (“someone else”), ps > .05. Surprisingly, despite significant increases in the belief that the child was abused as a function of increasing evidence, F(2, 198) = 7.02, p < .001, ƞp2 = .07, there were no effects of varying levels of evidence on participants reporting behavior, ps > .05. Implications for this study could lead to the development of programs for reporting child abuse and provide insight into why people who suspect child abuse decide whether or not to report the abuse.

Department

Psychology

Faculty Advisor

Heather Price

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 

The Role of Consequence Salience and Evidence Threshold in Perceptions of Child Neglect

The present study used vignette scenarios of a case of child neglect to explore the influence of salient consequences and certainty in abuse (i.e., level of evidence) on perceptions of child neglect, child credibility, likelihood of reporting, and responsibility towards the child. Undergraduate students (N = 199) were randomly assigned to read one of nine different vignettes. The study was a 3 (Consequences: child, adult, control) x 3 (Levels of additional evidence: none, moderate, strong) between-subjects design. After reading the scenario, participants provided judgements of their likely future actions and rated perceptions of the child. Results showed participants were most likely to report to both social services and the police when the consequences of the abuse were more child-focused [F(2, 198) = 8.05, p < .001, ƞp2 = .08, F(2, 198) = 13.97, p < .001, ƞp2 = .13, respectively] than when they were adult-focused or in the control condition. However, salient consequences did not impact the likelihood of contacting either the child’s father or another informal option (“someone else”), ps > .05. Surprisingly, despite significant increases in the belief that the child was abused as a function of increasing evidence, F(2, 198) = 7.02, p < .001, ƞp2 = .07, there were no effects of varying levels of evidence on participants reporting behavior, ps > .05. Implications for this study could lead to the development of programs for reporting child abuse and provide insight into why people who suspect child abuse decide whether or not to report the abuse.