Gomez_Jury_Rough_Draft1 - Gomez 1 Katherine Gomez...

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Gomez 1 Katherine Gomez Experimental Psychology Jury Paper Influence of a Defendant and Victim’s Attractiveness on a Jury’s Decision for Jail Time Introduction In a court trial, the jury makes the decision for whether or not the defendant is guilty, and if they are, how many years they will get in jail or prison. This is why it is crucial to understand what factors sway the jurors from deciding in an unbiased way. For years, psychologists have been interested in the influence of personal characteristics of the defendant or the victim on a jury’s court decision of making them guilty or innocent. Research by Crawford and Christensen (1995) has shown that their characteristics do indeed have an influence on their decisions including whether or not they are innocent and how many years in jail if they are undoubtedly guilty. Psychologists have made several ways to study the jury decision- making influences (Crawford and Christensen, 1995). They have made jury stimulation research with questionnaires and or asking participants to serve as an experimental jury where they view tapes of real or artificial court cases. One other way they have found is to have participants in the study have been jurors, or who have been jurors recently. One particular factor that influences a jury’s decision making is the attractiveness of the defendant and the victim (Crawford and Christensen, 1995). The defendant was given the most amounts of years when he was unattractive and the victim was attractive. This lead me to believe that the defendant should be given the least amount of years when the defendant is attractive and the victim is unattractive. My independent variables are whether the defendant is attractive or unattractive, and my two levels for each are whether the victim is attractive or unattractive. My
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Gomez 2 dependent variable is how many years the defendant is given in jail. Handing out surveys to college students from the City College of New York was how this was tested. Method Participants The participants for this experiment were randomly selected college students from the City College of New York. There were a total of 112 participants in this experiment. The given ages ranged from 14 to 50. The mean age was 21.95 ± 5.11. Both men and women were included with this experiment with almost a 1 to 1 ratio respectively. Specifically, there were 55 females and 47 males in this study. They were all recruited from the City College campus. There were no
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Gomez_Jury_Rough_Draft1 - Gomez 1 Katherine Gomez...

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