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Witness Uncertainty and Its Effect on Jurors' Decisions
DeFranco, Rachel

2012, BA, Kent State University, College of Arts and Sciences / Department of Psychology.
Many studies have shown that jurors are heavily swayed by highly confident eyewitnesses, even when their testimony is inaccurate. This study aimed to examine whether mock jurors are similarly sensitive to testimony provided with uncertainty. My study had three goals: (1) examine whether mock jurors would distrust testimony provided with uncertainty more than information provided without doubt, even if presented by the same witness; (2) assess how sensitive mock jurors are to testimony provided with low confidence, by eliminating a high confidence comparison, and (3) examine whether mock jurors would be more sensitive to some indicators of uncertainty than others. Participants listened to a fictionalized eyewitness interview containing six neutral confidence items and five critical items, of which each varied in degree of uncertainty. After a cover task, participants rated their confidence that each item mentioned by the witness had actually happened. The results showed mock jurors were distrustful of information presented with uncertainty even if the witness had been confident in previous answers, that mock jurors were sensitive to low confidence even when there was not a high confidence comparison, and that both overt and less overt indicators of uncertainty had comparable effects on mock jurors’ belief in the testimony’s veracity.
Maria Zaragoza, PhD (Advisor)

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DeFranco, R. (2012). Witness Uncertainty and Its Effect on Jurors' Decisions. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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DeFranco, Rachel. "Witness Uncertainty and Its Effect on Jurors' Decisions." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Kent State University, 2012. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 30 Mar 2015.

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DeFranco, Rachel "Witness Uncertainty and Its Effect on Jurors' Decisions." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Kent State University, 2012. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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