Exploring own-age biases in deception detection

Gillian Slessor, Louise H. Phillips, Ted Ruffman, Phoebe E. Bailey, Pauline Insch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


The present study explored own-age biases in deception detection, investigating whether individuals were more likely to trust those in their own-age group. Younger and older participants were asked to detect deceit from videos of younger and older speakers, rating their confidence in each decision. Older participants showed an own-age bias: they were more likely to think that deceptive speakers of their own age, relative to younger speakers, were telling the truth. Older participants were also more confident in their judgements of own-age, relative to other-age, speakers. There were no own-age biases for younger participants. In a subsequent (apparently unrelated) task, participants were asked to rate the trustworthiness of the speakers. Both age groups of participants trusted younger speakers who had previously told the truth more compared to those who had lied. This effect was not found for older speakers. These findings are considered in relation to the in-group/out-group model of social cognition and common stereotypical beliefs held about younger and older adults.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)493-506
Number of pages14
JournalCognition & Emotion
Issue number3
Early online date28 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

This study was funded by a Sixth Century Fellowship from the University of Aberdeen and a small grant from the Nuffield
Foundation [grant ref. SGS/38781] to G Slessor. Bailey, Ruffman and Slessor were also supported by an Australian Research
Council Discovery Grant.


  • deception
  • trust
  • own-age biases
  • in-group/out-group model


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