Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version

January 1999


Published in Law and Human Behavior, Vol. 23, No. 1 (1999), pp. 75–91. Copyright © 1999 American Psychology-Law Society, Division 41 of the American Psychological Association. Published by Springer-Verlag. Used by permission.


Despite the need to assess the ecological validity of jury simulation research before generalizing from simulations to the behavior of real jurors, surprisingly little jury research has directly addressed issues of validity. The present paper reviews the extant research on two aspects of the validity question—specifically, research that has compared different samples of mock jurors, and research that has manipulated the medium of trial presentation. In addition, jury simulation research published in the first 20 years of Law and Human Behavior is analyzed with respect to these variables. The majority of simulations used student-jurors and presented the trial in written form. Additionally, the methodology of simulation research has actually become less realistic over time. However, this trend is not necessarily cause for concern, as a review of the literature reveals little research that has obtained differences between different mock juror samples or different trial media.