18 terms

Forensic and legal psychology

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adversarial system
a system of justice in which opposing parties present competing versions of the evidence in an effort to win a favorable judgment. In the U.S., a trial is an adversarial proceeding because lawyers compete to win a verdict in their favor. The American legal system assumes that truth will emeerge through a contest between adversaries who present opposing interpretations of the evidence to a neutral fact finder (a jury or judge)
amicus curiae brief
(friend of the court) a written document submitted into the court by parties with no direct involvement, but a strong interest in the case. The American Psychological Association has submitted such briefs to summarize relevant research and to clarify the overall meaning of a set of findings.
Brandeis Brief
A legal, argumentative document submitted by Louis Brandeis to the 1908 U.S. supreme court in Muller v. Oregon. The brief incorportated medical, scientific, and government reports that favored a particular party in the litigation. this document set a precedent for the courts to consider research in their decisisons.
brief
written documents submitted by parties to a judge or panel of judges. typically, a brief offers interpretations of relevant law and summarizes facts and argumetns for a party to the dispute.
Code of Professional Responsibility
a set of ethical rules, developed by the American Bar Association, governing the conduct of lawyers. it requires lawyers to "represent their clients zealously within the bounds of the law." It focuses on the legal efficacy of an argument as opposed to its veracity.
culture
a set of shared basic assumptions about the relative importanct of competing goals, how disputes should be resolved, and what procedures to follow in striving for goals
Daubert trilogy
three specific court cases-Daubert v Merrel Dow Pharm. Inc (1993); General Electric Co. v. Joiner(1997); and Kumho Tire Ltd. v Carmichael (1999)-that expanded the role of the judge as gatekeeper. together their precedents delegated authority to the trial judge for evaluating the validity and relevance of proposed expert testimony and determining its admissibility in court
empirical legal studies
an early 21st century movement in law schools in which law is studied through data collection and research analysis
evaluation research
an empricial assessment of a program's effectiveness in achieveing its intended goals. for example, reserach designed to determine if a specific legal practice should be continued, abandoned, or modified.
experts
people who have acquired specialized knowledge through significant education or relevant experience. expert witnesses are usually allowed to provide an opinion in court pertaining to thier specialized field.
forensic psychology
the use of psychological knowledge or research methods to advise, evaluate, or reform the legam system
gatekeeping role of judges
as determined in the U.S. Supreme Court case Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharm. Inc. (1993), judges must asses the scientific validity of potential testimony before allowing it to be heard at trial
legal realism
an early 21st centruy movement that attempted to redefinethe purpse of law. it was based on the idea that socal policy goals and research evidence should play a major role in judicial decisions
precedent
a past judicial decision that guides judges in making future decsions about similar legal issues
stare decisis
"let the decision stand" -the principle that furture judicial decisions should be based on precedent
suborning perjury
the criminal act of persuading or purposefully allowing another person to lie about a material issue while under oath
trial consultants
advisors hired to provide expertise in the service of litigants. they use psychological knowledge to influence trial processes such that they produce favorable outcomes for the client. psychologist hired as trial consultants help attorney with jury selection, witness preparation, and/or trial startegy
trier of fact
the person(s) given responsibility for evaluating the evidence presented at a trial and rendering a verdict. In a jury trial, the jury acts as thefact finder while the judge determine which evidence is admissible and the relevant law to be applied.
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