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‘I don’t even remember anything’: Optimising the choice of method when interviewing preschoolers
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Social Medicine. (CHAP)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9879-941X
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Description
Abstract [en]

There is increasing need and demand in various contexts to take children’s perspectives into account, including the views and opinions of the youngest children. However, listening to the voices of children is a challenging and complex task, and the field is normatively loaded. There is thus a growing need for valid and reliable methods and techniques that aid children to verbalise their experiences. The overall aim of this thesis was to examine the ability of the In My Shoes computer assisted interview and a Standard verbal interview to elicit accurate information and evaluative content, when used with preschool-aged children and determine their suitability in relation to situationally shy children.

Our studies show that the two interview methods, in general, provided equally accurate and complete statements. In addition, the IMS interview can be a more useful and suitable tool during the rapport phase with situationally shy children compared to the Standard verbal method. For non-shy children, the interview methods were equally adequate. In relation to evaluative information, the recommended open-ended questions in the Standard verbal interview were insufficient. Children appeared to need evaluative questions in order to provide evaluative content. Examining the ability of IMS to elicit subjective experiences showed that using IMS aided children to provide detailed and varied descriptions of emotions, somatic experiences, and objects such as toys.  

Thus, when choosing the optimal child interview method, there are several aspects that need to be considered, including the degree to which children’s statements need to be accurate and complete and/or contain evaluative information and the child’s level of shyness. These studies have increased the number of evaluated methods for interviewing children and contributed to new knowledge about the challenging task of optimising the choice of method for interviewing preschoolers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2017. , 86 p.
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 1651-6206 ; 1381
Keyword [en]
child, interview method, computer-assisted interview, validity, forensic, shy, distress, emotion
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Social Medicine; Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-331193ISBN: 978-91-513-0106-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-331193DiVA: diva2:1149070
Public defence
2017-12-01, Sal IX, Universitetshuset, Biskopsgatan 3, Uppsala, 09:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 259-2012-68Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 259-2012-68Swedish Research Council, 259-2012-68VINNOVA, 259-2012-68
Note

Forskningsfinansiering: Stiftelsen Allmänna Barnhuset, FB13-0014 

Available from: 2017-11-10 Created: 2017-10-13 Last updated: 2017-11-10
List of papers
1. In My Shoes - Validation of a computer assisted approach for interviewing children
Open this publication in new window or tab >>In My Shoes - Validation of a computer assisted approach for interviewing children
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2016 (English)In: Child Abuse & Neglect: The International Journal, ISSN 0145-2134, Vol. 58, 160-172 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Interviewing young children presents a challenge because they tend to provide incomplete accounts and are easily misled. Therefore there is a need for techniques to improve young children's recall, while maintaining accuracy and increasing completeness. The computer-assisted interview In My Shoes (IMS) is an aid that potentially offers a way for young children to provide accounts of their experiences. This study examined the validity of IMS, by comparing it with a forensic best practice interview approach using a real life clinical situation to ensure high ecological validity. Children were randomly assigned to either method and both accuracy and completeness of statements made by 4- and 5-year-olds (N = 54) regarding a video-documented health check-up were assessed. The In My Shoes interviews were as good as best practice interviews on all accuracy measures for both age groups, except for object accuracy that was better in the forensic interview condition. Events description completeness was similar in both interview conditions; however, IMS interviews generated more complete statements about people present at the visit. The findings suggest that the IMS approach yields comparable results to a best practice interview, and it can be used as an alternative aid in child interviews.

Keyword
Interviewing aid, Child, Computer-assisted interview, Validity, In My Shoes
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Social Medicine; Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-303099 (URN)10.1016/j.chiabu.2016.06.022 (DOI)000381241400016 ()27394051 (PubMedID)
Funder
VINNOVA, 259-2012-68Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 259-2012-68
Note

Forskningsfinansiär: Allmänna Barnhuset, FB13-0014

Available from: 2016-09-28 Created: 2016-09-15 Last updated: 2017-10-13
2. The computer-assisted interview In My Shoes can benefit shy preschool children's communication
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The computer-assisted interview In My Shoes can benefit shy preschool children's communication
2017 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 12, no 8, e0182978Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Interviewing children is a cognitively, socially, and emotionally challenging situation, especially for young and shy children. Thus, finding methods that aid rapport and increase these children's communication is important. The present study investigated whether children's verbal and non-verbal communicative behavior developed differently during the rapport phase, depending on whether children were situationally shy or not, and whether the interview was conducted using the computer-assisted interview In My Shoes (IMS) or a Standard verbal interview. The sample consisted of 60 children aged 4 to 5-years-old. The results showed that for the shy children in the IMS group their talkativeness increased and their answer latency decreased including the amount of encouragement the child needed to talk, while no changes were observed for the shy children in the Standard verbal interview group. There were no significant differences in the non-verbal behavior for the shy children regardless of the interview method used. For the non-shy children, overall, the interview method did not affect either the verbal or the non-verbal outcomes. Our findings indicate that IMS can be a useful tool during the rapport-building phase with shy children as it helps these children to improve their verbal communication.

Keyword
child, interview, communication, In My Shoes
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-328584 (URN)10.1371/journal.pone.0182978 (DOI)000407550500034 ()28813534 (PubMedID)
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 259-2012-68Swedish Research Council FormasVINNOVA
Available from: 2017-08-28 Created: 2017-08-28 Last updated: 2017-11-14Bibliographically approved
3. “And they gave me a shot, it really hurt” – Evaluative content in investigative interviews with young children
Open this publication in new window or tab >>“And they gave me a shot, it really hurt” – Evaluative content in investigative interviews with young children
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2017 (English)In: Children and youth services review, ISSN 0190-7409, E-ISSN 1873-7765, Vol. 82, 434-443 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Research is scarce on the suitability of the evidence-based components of child investigative interviews when used in non-forensic contexts such as social work or school, particularly in relation to children’s reports on emotional content.

This explorative study investigated to what extent a structured forensic interview protocol aids children in verbalizing negative emotional experiences of distress or discomfort. To do this we assessed and compared children’s displayed distress or discomfort during a video-recorded health visit with the verbalized distress or discomfort in interviews 2-4 weeks later about this visit. The children, aged 4 and 5 years (N = 26), were interviewed with a forensic interview protocol. Children’s statements regarding distress and discomfort and the interviewer questions preceding these statements were analyzed qualitatively.

The results showed that 46% of the 4-year-olds and 39 % of the 5-year-olds displayed discomfort or distress during their health visit. In the interviews, open-ended questions were posed to all children, however, these questions were sufficient to aid only some children (n = 6) to share evaluative content. None of the children who displayed distress or discomfort during the visit verbalized such experiences after an invitation only. Most children who described experiences of distress or discomfort did so in relation to evaluative questions.

The results suggest that more research is warranted to investigate exactly how and when evaluative questions should be posed and whether this differs depending on severity of experience or the child’s age. The need for protocol development and its suitability when used in other fields of practice is discussed.

Keyword
investigative interviews, evaluative, emotion, question, distress
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-328585 (URN)10.1016/j.childyouth.2017.10.017 (DOI)
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 259-2012-68
Note

Forskningsfinansiär: Allmänna Barnhuset, FB13-0014

Available from: 2017-10-11 Created: 2017-10-11 Last updated: 2017-10-19
4. 'I felt a little bubbly in my tummy': Eliciting pre-schoolers' accounts of their health visit using a computer-assisted interview method.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>'I felt a little bubbly in my tummy': Eliciting pre-schoolers' accounts of their health visit using a computer-assisted interview method.
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2016 (English)In: Child Care Health and Development, ISSN 0305-1862, E-ISSN 1365-2214, Vol. 42, no 1, 87-97 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: In the health care services, children's rights to participate in all matters that concern them are considered important. However, in practice this can be challenging with young children. In My Shoes (IMS) is a computer-assisted interview tool developed to help children talk about their experiences. The aim of the study was to evaluate the IMS' ability to elicit pre-schoolers' subjective experiences and accurate accounts of a routine health visit as well as the children's engagement in the interview process.

METHODS: Interviews were conducted with 23 children aged 4-5 years, 2-4 weeks after their health visit. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using a method inspired by Content Analysis to evaluate IMS's ability to elicit accounts about subjective experiences. Accurate accounts were assessed by comparing the transcribed interviews with the filmed visits at the child health centre. The children's engagement was defined by the completion and length of the interviews, and the children's interaction with the software.

RESULTS: All children gave accounts about their subjective experiences, such as their emotional state during the visit, available toys or rewards they received. All children related to the correct event, they all named at least one person who was present and 87% correctly named at least one examination procedure. The majority of children (91%) completed the interview, which lasted 17-39 min (M = 24), and 96% interacted with the IMS software.

CONCLUSIONS: IMS was feasible to help children describe their health care experiences, in both detail and depth. The children interacted with the software and maintained their interest for an extended period of time.

Keyword
child interview; child public health; children's rights; children's views; computer; qualitative research methods
National Category
Pediatrics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-269207 (URN)10.1111/cch.12293 (DOI)000367930300011 ()26564782 (PubMedID)
Funder
VINNOVA, 259-2012-68Swedish Research Council, 259-2012-68Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 259-2012-68
Note

Forskningsfinansiär: Allmänna Barnhuset, FB13-0014

Available from: 2015-12-14 Created: 2015-12-14 Last updated: 2017-10-13

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