• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

a)How might the view of the majority influence a jury when reaching a verdict?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Psychology Revision ? Reaching A Verdict Q1)a)How might the view of the majority influence a jury when reaching a verdict? (10) Juries consist of twelve people, and often their verdicts of guilt or innocence aren?t unanimous. In this case, the view of the majority can greatly influence the minority in reaching a verdict. In a study conducted by Asch ? though not originally a forensic study ? he aimed to show how the views of the minority can be altered by the majority, even when presented with an unambiguous task. The task consisted of line X and comparison lines A, B and C and the five participants (all confederates except one) had to identify which of the lines A, B or C was the same length as line X. ...read more.

Middle

Majority influence, studied by Asch, proved how the majority voice can overpower the minority via use of consistent and confident delivery of beliefs. This, whist never originally a forensic study, can be generalised to courtroom behaviour as the participants used in Asch?s study were strangers that had never met, which reflects the reality of real juries, so it can be considered that the behaviour monitored in the study is similar to what would be observed in a jury. The study was very simplistic and required very little equipment, meaning the cross-cultural replications of the study are available and can increase reliability. However, the study really only pertains to countries or jurisdictions that use the adversarial system of justice in their courtroom; if the courtroom uses an inquisitorial system, then there is no need for a jury and majority influence has no effect. ...read more.

Conclusion

A further influence on courtroom verdicts is primacy effects. Studied by Pennington, who then went on to study the effect of Story Order (chronological) vs. Witness Order, primacy effects were said to influence the jury?s decision in favour of the prosecution because it is the information that is heard first, as opposed to the defence which is heard last. Primacy effects dominate recency effects, and thus the study can be applied to courtroom behaviour because some court cases are very longwinded and go on for months, meaning by the end the attention of the jurors is less active than at the start, and they may miss important pieces of evidence in favour of the defendant. These influences can lower the accuracy of the jury?s verdicts, but they are always present in courtroom and special measures need to be taken in order to cancel them out, though it is not always possible. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Social Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a star student thought of this essay

5 star(s)

Response to the question

This answer consists of two questions for the OCR G543 syllabus. It has one question worth 10 mark for AO1 (knowledge and understanding) and another question carrying 15 marks for AO1 and AO2 (critical evaluation), totally 25 marks altogether. It ...

Read full review

Response to the question

This answer consists of two questions for the OCR G543 syllabus. It has one question worth 10 mark for AO1 (knowledge and understanding) and another question carrying 15 marks for AO1 and AO2 (critical evaluation), totally 25 marks altogether. It is my understanding that there would be four of these 25-mark questions to answer within two hours for the G543 exam.

The candidate easily achieves the full ten marks for Question 1. There is an infallible knowledge of the study by Asch into conformity, and an excellent level of control when discussing the procedure, as it is not a very easy study to explain at all. The results cited are all accurate and these are nicely tied back in to the question focus of how a jury might be influence if there is a clear majority opting for one decision and a minority opting for another.

The second question is much harder, but the candidate's answer is very strong, and would be likely to achieve round about 14-15 marks. The knowledge of empirical evidence is exceptional, and it really aids them in being able to attack this question with flair and confidence. They write with assertiveness and show a good understanding of how to consistently link the analysis back to the question of how studies into majority influence can b e observed in a real life courtroom. My only quandary here (though arguably not a large one) is that there is no balance where the candidate might chance to evaluate a study that does not support the idea of majority influence. However, this does not stop the candidate's answer being confident and accurate.

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is only measure in Question 2. Here the candidate presents a fairly unconventional structure,l which can make the analysis hard to identify, but this does not hinder them whatsoever. The fresh structure may actually be favoured by examiners who, if having seen one too many exam responses with the same prescriptive structure, become bored and don't appreciate the answers properly.

The analysis is in-depth and shows a great level of attention to the empirical evidence provided by the studies cited in the answer. All the information is used well and whilst some maybe be superfluous, this would only hinder the candidate's chances of finishing the exam on time, rather than any of their marks.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication is interesting. Psychology answers like this call for the utmost clarity yet 'purpose-built' language possible. Given that four of these 25-mark questions must be completed within two hours, I recommend the candidate being a little more stark with their language. Whilst there is absolutely no cause for concern with regards to spelling, grammar or punctuation from an English perspective, from a practical perspective using such vocabulary may take too much time and perhaps simple lexes would be a better way of ensuring exam completion.


Did you find this review helpful? Join our team of reviewers and help other students learn

Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 15/09/2012

Read less
Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Social Psychology essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The effect of the Level of Processing on the amount of information recalled

    4 star(s)

    tachistoscope, the participants were presented with a list of preset questions involving structural and semantic words only. One methodological limitation was that the study was a lab experiment. In general, such experiments lack ecological validity. Also in a lab experiment, participants are well aware they are taking part in an experiment and this may have lead to demand characteristics.

  2. Psychology First Impression

    Facebook and MySpace, the effect of first impression might be changed.In order to investigate whether the primacy effect still prevails in today's society. I will be adapting Luchins research and writing my own paragraphs - story 1 & 2(see appendices 1).

  1. An Investigation to see whether the halo effect is present when rating personality ...

    partake in this investigation, the response sheets were given out upside down so that nobody saw what was on it. The standardised instructions were read out after the brief which clearly explained what each participant had to do and how long they had to finish the task given to them,

  2. whether leading questions can affect a person's memory of a question and insert an ...

    of a memory and things that did not occur can be inserted into a person's memory and therefore distort it. Leading questions suggest answers that imply there is a proper answer. Loftus drew on Bartlett's ideas of reconstructive memory and how questioning after an event can effect the reliability of the information being recalled.

  1. Critically evaluate research concerned with decision making in groups. Give attention to minority and ...

    The findings of this experiment may not be surprising but somewhat expected, as being influenced by others judgements is to be expected especially if one is not sure about the stimulus. However it is questioned whether the same results will be attained when the participant is fully aware that the apposing views are obviously in the wrong.

  2. Compare and contrast the effect of minority and majority influence on juror decision making ...

    In comparison, minority influence is when one or two people affect the juror's decision. This could be because of the factors such as age, gender, occupation, status and occupational background. Minority influence is usually based on informational influence, providing the majority with new ideas and information which leads them to re-examine their views.

  1. What is shopping addiction and how can it be treated?

    It seems form the results that addicted shoppers buy more appearence related goods such as clothes and jewellary . They are motivated by image conserns rather than functional ones. Compulsive shoppers have greater self discrepancies and stronger consumption orientated values than non-compulsive ones (Dittmar, Beattie and Friese, 1996)

  2. Analyse the Studies into the Accuracy of Eyewitness Testimony

    Distinctiveness describes the extent to which a stimulus is different from one memory trace to another in the system. Elaboration measures how rich the processing is in term of meaning. Maintenance rehearsal is simple repetition, which is shallow, and elaborative rehearsal is when rehearsal explores meaning and involves deep processing.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work