Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

David P. Biros, PhD


Deception aims to affect a decision-making process in a way that somehow benefits the deceiver. More knowledge is desired in the area of purely text-based scenarios. Thirty-seven graduate students at the Air Force Institute of Technology participated in an experiment in order to gain an initial understanding of how people determine whether text has been manipulated, and to identify specific areas that may be more closely investigated in future research. Excerpts were drawn from editions of a current-events newsletter that the participants receive on a weekly basis as part of their enrollment in the graduate program. Some of the excerpts were manipulated, and others were not. Participants were shown a set of these excerpts and were asked to give ratings of their perceived familiarity with the subject of the excerpt, their perception of the relevance of that subject to themselves, and their perception of whether they believed that the excerpt had been manipulated. As part of their manipulation answers, participants were allowed to indicate heightened confidence in their answers by selecting a version of the answer that included the word "definitely." Analysis of the responses showed support for associations between familiarity, relevance, and definite answers. Analysis further showed support for an association between definite answers and increased rate of accuracy in determining whether an excerpt was manipulated. The analysis did not show support for an association between familiarity and accuracy, nor did it show support for an association between relevance and accuracy.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number