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Outline and discuss persuasion techniques used within the courtroom

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Psychology The aim of this paper is to outline and discuss persuasion techniques used within the courtroom. The courtroom has been one of psychologists' most preferred places when researching the different aspects of criminal psychology. Three pieces of work will be examined and evaluated. The first piece of evidence is by Foley, L.A & Pigott, M.A who conducted an experiment in 2000 called "Belief in a just world and jury decisions in a civil rape trial". The main aim of the study was to see how much rape victims would be held responsible for the harm done to them and how much compensation they would receive for damages, taking into account that this is a just world. This was done by testing two hypotheses: Hypothesis 1: younger plaintiffs and older plaintiffs will be held equally responsible for rape. Hypothesis 2: Older women will be awarded more compensation than younger women. The independent variable was the age of the rape victim, the dependant variables were the percentage of responsibility attributed to the victim and the amount of compensation they received. ...read more.


The main aims were to examine the testimony given by a group of children in the course of a sexual abuse investigation, assess the level of support for the allegations made and the extent of abuse for the children who made no allegations. The participants were four girls aged 8, 13, 14 and 15. They testified about sex exploitation that involved eight adult men. The girls' testimony was compared with several hundred photographs and audio taped records of the abuse The results showed that for about 80% of the allegations there was supportive evidence, but more specifically: 85.6% of alleged sexual acts (kissing, fellatio, intercourse). 42.9% of coercive acts (paying or promising to pay for sex, paying for photo sessions). 82.5% of alleged preparatory acts (girls posing for photos, the arranging of sex sessions with men). The percentage of the results was very high but would have been higher still if there wasn't a problem with transcribing the tapes meaning that it was not always possible to identify what sexual acts were happening. ...read more.


The results showed that an incorrect answer was given 36.8% of time by a true participant. There were several possible reasons for them to yield, some said that they were wrong and the majority were correct, some thought that the majority were victims of an optical illusion and some believed that they were in someway deficient and wanted to hide this from the others. We can, therefore see that conformity is considered so normal that people give an incorrect answer even if they know they know the right one, this put into situation how we educate in this country. Also, all the participants agreed that being independent was preferred to conforming, a lot didn't however. Conformity is one of the most famous persuasion techniques that exist mainly because it's so easy to create, seen in every day life and invisible to the naked eye. When outlined and examined we can see that the three pieces evidence each have something to do with persuasion techniques in their own way, two of the studies were not, however, based in a courtroom but they did remind us of a group in a similar to the position of a jury. ...read more.

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