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Advanced Forensic Interviewing: Beyond Basic Forensic Interviewing Courses


Beyond Basic Forensic Interviewing Training Courses for 2023:

Pathways for developing effective forensic interviewing skills


Forensic interviewers are encouraged to continue developing their skills in a variety of ways:

  • Regularly conducting forensic interviews
  • Ongoing training
  • Self-review
  • Opportunities to receive feedback through supervision, mentoring, or peer review
  • Reading recommended books and research articles
  • Opportunities to engage with other forensic interviewers about challenges

Previously, NCAC identified our trainings by two labels:

  • Basic Forensic Interviewing – an interviewer’s introduction to forensic interviewing
  • Advanced Forensic Interviewing – any training that was not a BFI

There were several issues with using the label “advanced FI training.”

  • There was no set agenda or list of topics that comprised an advanced training.
  • Most advanced training agendas were composed of multiple topics that only minimally addressed the topics included.
  • This approach was less likely to move the interviewer’s practice forward as opposed to more in-depth coverage and opportunities for application.
  • There was concern about the possible implication that an interviewer’s training path was completed once they attended a BFI and an AFI.
  • AFI training groups were often composed of participants with a wide range of experience and skill development making it challenging for instructors to target the needs of participants.


 NCAC’s Pathways Approach

The initial FI training will no longer be labeled as “basic” but will provide the same solid introduction to forensic interviewing for new interviewers.  For participants who have previously completed another FI model, it can add to their understanding of the approach and reasoning behind the NCAC CFIS.

All Pathway trainings will require that a forensic interviewer has completed an initial course in forensic interviewing (NCAC CFIS or another model) and is actively engaged with forensic interviewing.

Each course offering will provide more in-depth coverage of a designated topic with lectures, demonstrations, exercises and activities, and opportunities to make a connection between the interviewer’s current practice and the topic.

Class sizes will be limited to allow for more inclusion and interaction.

NCAC instructors will provide guidance in course description as to “goodness of fit” between the participant and the designated course without attempting to control a participant’s choice.

We recommend the Increasing Skill in Forensic Interviewing of Children course for less experienced interviewers or those interviewers needing to refresh their skills.

Forensic interviewers in consultation with their supervisors will be able to select the Pathway course that most closely fits the next step in their skill development and confidence.

NCAC will promote a more thoughtful and deliberate model for developing forensic interviewers in their professional development.

What Forensic Interviewers are saying about Developmental Pathways:

More Than One Interview: When, Why, and How

"I learned so much from Linda Steele. I feel that I got a lot of new information on how to do extended interviews. I learned ways to ask questions in different ways that I had not thought of. Networking with different interviewers was great also."

More Than One Interview: When, Why, and How

"I was able to learn the current recommendations for additional interviews and the supporting research. I am eager to bring this knowledge back to my MDT and apply it to my work with children."

Getting the Best Information from a Narrative Child Witness

"Andra's experience and willingness to share was invaluable."