False confessions in the lab: Do plausibility and consequences matter?

R. Horselenberg, H. Merckelbach, T. Smeets, D. Franssens, G. J. Y. Peters, G. Zeles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


The present paper describes three studies that examined false confessions in the laboratory. Studies 1 (N=56) and 2 (N=9) relied on the by now classic computer crash paradigm introduced by Kassin and Kiechel (Psychological Science, 7, 125–128, 1996). Study 3 (N=12) employed a novel paradigm in which undergraduate participants were falsely accused of exam fraud. Our data indicate that false confessions do occur, even when conditions become more ecologically valid. Furthermore, we explored whether individual differences in compliance, suggestibility, fantasy proneness, dissociation, and cognitive failures are related to false confessions. Of these, only fantasy proneness was associated with false confessions
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-75
JournalPsychology Crime & Law
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'False confessions in the lab: Do plausibility and consequences matter?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this