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LecturerBethany Growns

Internal Phone: 92560


Research Interests

I am a cognitive scientist and a Lecturer at the University of Canterbury. I teach courses on forensic psychology and psychology and law.

My research focuses on how forensic science practitioners make decisions in their work. How does a fingerprint examiner determine whether two fingerprints are from the same person or two different people? How does a firearms examiner decide whether two cartridge cases have been fired from the same gun or two different guns? I am interested in the psychology behind how forensic scientists make these decisions to better understand how we can train and select forensic examiners in the future to increase professional performance.

I aim to develop training programs in my work to train current forensic scientists, and work out ways to select forensic experts in the future. I am keen to work with Postgraduate students in investigating these ideas and developing evidence-based ways to improve performance in forensic science.

Recent Publications

  • Growns B., Towler A. and Martire K. (2023) The novel object-matching test (NOM Test): A psychometric measure of visual comparison ability. Behavior Research Methods
  • Helm RK. and Growns B. (2023) Predicting and projecting memory: Error and bias in metacognitive judgements underlying testimony evaluation. Legal and Criminological Psychology 28(1): 15-33.
  • Wilson-Kovacs D., Helm R., Growns B. and Redfern L. (2023) Digital evidence in defence practice: Prevalence, challenges and expertise. International Journal of Evidence and Proof
  • Chin JM., Growns B., Sebastian J., Page MJ. and Nakagawa S. (2022) The transparency and reproducibility of systematic reviews in forensic science. Forensic Science International 340
  • Growns B., Dunn JD., Helm RK., Towler A. and Kukucka J. (2022) The low prevalence effect in fingerprint comparison amongst forensic science trainees and novices. PLoS ONE 17(8 August)