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Emma Finch

Investigating The CSI Effect


Discipline/professional area
Forensic Psychology

Outline of research project

The CSI Effect is defined as frequent viewing of Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) or other forensically based television (TV) programmes resulting in a false sense and unrealistic expectation of scientific methods used during forensic investigations (Mancini, 2011). The aim of this thesis is to investigate The CSI Effect, within the UK, to report the consequences, if any; this may have on the criminal trials. I will be investigating if the following, when coupled with The CSI Effect, have an impact on jury decision making: The media / Evidence type / Personality type / Individual differences / Need for closure / Perceived Forensic knowledge Vs actual Forensic knowledge.

Key references

Baranowski, A. M., Burkhardt, A., Czernik, E., & Hecht, H. (2018). The CSI-education effect: do potential criminals benefit from forensic TV series? International Journal of Law, Crime and Justice, 52, 86-97.

Shelton, D. E. (2008). The'CSI Effect': does it really exist? National Institute of Justice Journal, 259.

Shelton, D. E., Kim, Y. S., & Barak, G. (2006). A study of juror expectations and demands concerning scientific evidence: does the CSI effect exist. Vanderbilt. Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law, 9, 331.

Tyler, T. R. (2006). Viewing CSI and the threshold of guilt: managing truth and justice in reality and fiction. Yale Law Journal, 115, 1050.

Director of studies
Dr Kate Whitefield

Dr Jennifer Drabble

Expected Completion date

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