A Misconception about polygraph does exist among certain individuals, which needs to be addressed.
It is important to understand what a polygraph examination entails:

  • A polygraph instrument will collect physiological data from at least 3 systems in the human body.
  • A typical polygraph examination will include:
    1. A period referred to as a pre-test
    2. A chart collection phase
    3. A test data analysis phase

In the pre-test, the polygraph examiner will complete required paperwork and talk with the examinee about the test. During this period, the examiner will discuss the questions to be asked and familiarize the examinee with the testing procedure.

During the chart collection phase, the examiner will administer and collect a number of polygraph charts.

Following this, the examiner will analyze the charts and render an opinion as to the truthfulness of the person taking the test. The examiner, when appropriate, will offer the examinee the opportunity to explain physiological responses in relation to one or more questions asked during the test.

It is important to note that the polygraph does not include the analysis of physiology associated with voice, which is being dealt with as a completely separate entity. Instruments claimed to record voice stress are not polygraphs and have as yet not shown any scientific support.