Predicting jurors' decisions : the effects of repeated expression and forewarning in civil voir dire

Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor's Name

Kevin O ’Neil

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Rebecca Mae Salokar

Third Advisor's Name

Christian Resick

Fourth Advisor's Name

Ronald Fisher

Date of Defense



To help lawyers uncover jurors’ attitudes and predict verdict, litigation experts recommend that attorneys encourage jurors to repeatedly express their attitudes during voir dire. While social cognitive literature has established that repeated expression of attitudes increases accessibility and behavior predictability, the persuasive twist on the method exercised in trials deserves empirical investigation. Only one study has examined the use of repeated expression within a legal context with the results finding that the tactic increased accessibility, but did not influence the attitude verdict relationship. This dissertation reexamines the ability of civil attitudes to predict verdict in a civil trial and investigates the use of repeated expression as a persuasive tactic utilized by both parties (Plaintiff and Defense) within a civil voir dire in an attempt to increase attitudinal strength, via accessibility, and change attitudes to better predict verdict. This project also explores potential moderators, repetition by the opposing party and the use o f a forewarning, to determine their ability to counter the effects of repeated expression on attitudes and verdict.



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