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Scientific Validity of Lie Detector (Polygraph) Testing

Some polygraph tests have a scientifically validated 96% accuracy rate!

Science tells us that polygraph test results are accurate as much as 96% of the time, when the polygraph examiner is using a validated technique such as the Utah Zone of Comparison Test (UZCT).  Over the past forty years, hundreds of experiments, research projects and articles have been published all over the world.  Many of these appear in some of science’s most prestigious journals.  A partial list of these publications includes:

  • The Journal of Applied Psychology
  • Journal of General Psychology
  • Journal of The Forensic Sciences
  • Journal of Research in Personality
  • Law and Human Behavior
  • Psychophysiology
  • Polygraph
  • Nature


The scientific community supports the use of polygraph tests in court.

Two surveys of the membership of the Society for Psychophysiological Research (SPR) reveal that the vast majority of these informed scientists (all of whom are Ph.D.s and M.D.s) believe that polygraph tests are valid indicators of truthfulness and deception.

Dr. Rovner’s own lie detection research has been published in the journals Psychophysiology and Polygraph, and has been cited widely in other scientific studies and papers.  In this research, he showed that people who have learned about polygraph techniques and try to “beat” the test using countermeasures are still detected at a rate of 96%.

Here are a few websites I found that may be of some help to you in your research.

Scientific Validity