The Effect of Depressed Mood On Interrogative Suggestibility

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Charles D. Noblin

Advisor Department



The purpose of this research was to examine the relationship between interrogative suggestibility, as measured by the Gudjonnson Suggestibility Scale (GSS), and depressed mood state. The GSS provides two independent measures of suggestibility: Yield and Shift. These scales are combined into a Total suggestibility scale. The Velten Mood Induction Procedure was successfully used to induce depressed and elated mood states in naturally nondepressed female students. Neutral and No Mood Induction control groups were also employed in this study. Subjects (N = 48) were administered the GSS following the mood induction procedure. Results indicated that temporarily depressed subjects were significantly more suggestible than all of their nondepressed counterparts on the GSS Total suggestibility measure. In addition, temporarily depressed subjects were found to be more suggestible than temporarily elated subjects on the GSS Yield and Shift suggestibility measures. This finding has important implications regarding the role of suggestibility in research, forensic, and clinical settings.