skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 148256 Find in a Library
Title: Methodological Issues in Research on Legal Decision- Making, with Special Reference to Experimental Simulations (From Psychology and Law: International Perspectives, P 413- 423, 1992, Friedrich Losel, Doris Bender et al., eds. -- See NCJ-148224)
Author(s): V J Konecni; E B Ebbesen
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: Walter de Gruyter & Co
1 Berlin 30, Germany United
Sale Source: Walter de Gruyter & Co
Genthiner Str 13
1 Berlin 30,
Germany (Unified)
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Language: English
Country: Germany (Unified)
Annotation: Optimistic appraisals of the status of the interface between law and psychology are frequent, although others are skeptical about the value of incorporating psychological theory and empirical simulations in the domain of law.
Abstract: The legal psychology approach favored by the authors consists of a sociosystemic, descriptive-predictive, decisionmaking analysis of law and the development of causal models and a meta-theory of the legal system's operation. Experimental simulations have their drawbacks in the field of legal psychology. An example of the potentially serious consequences of asserting external validity for unvalidated simulations is the "death qualification" of jurors in capital crime cases. Jurors may tend to accept weak or inconsistent results when they support a particular policy position on capital punishment. Evidence is not yet sufficient, however, to support the claim that the death qualification voir dire increases the conviction proneness of juries. The confidence-accuracy relationship in eyewitness testimony and the role eyewitness confidence plays in the legal system are addressed, and the proper role of simulations in legal psychology is explored. 27 references
Main Term(s): Courts
Index Term(s): Capital punishment; Criminal justice research; Criminology theory evaluation; Eyewitness testimony; Jury decisionmaking; Legal system; Psychological research; Psychological theories
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.