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Midterm Lecture material (all lec 1-5)

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William Huggon

Psy328: PSYCHOLOGY OF LAW MIDTERM NOTES Lecture 1-5 LECTURE 1: PSYCHOLOGY AND LAW Psychology Human behavior lies at the heart of psychology and the law. Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes in an attempt to understand, predict, and in some cases control human behavior (Kassin, 1998). -prediction of behavior from attitudes and personality traits Psychology is the scientific study of behavior. anything an animal or human does, feels, or thinks. Psychology is a science firmly based in empirical research. Psychology has broad application. The Law -trying to govern regulate and control human behavior -intersects with psychology -look at psychology behind why the law is made The legal system is comprised of a body of laws, rules, regulations, and procedures. The legal system is designed to govern, regulate and control human behavior (Ogloff & Finkelman, 1999). Psychology and the Law -we made this law because we want to get rid of bias, but does it work? -if you dont study/test the law, it could be completely wrong Concerns issues arising out of the relationship between human behavior and the law, legal system, and legal process (Weiner, 1997) Psychologists working in law and psychology study empirically the assumptions about human behavior that underlie the operation and functioning of the law. Social scientists assess the reasonableness and validity of the evidence -need to look at reasonableness and validity to continue on -but psychologists can only suggest it show evidence and probabilities Differences between Law & Psychology -knowledge, methodology, epistemology, criteria, nature of law, principles, latitude LAW VS PSYCHOLOGY stare decisis: should do if at all possible creativity: innovation, doing new things the same thing that we did before -based on foundations of previous -same case happens later with similar studies circumstances, sentence the same way -decide cases the same way with the same manner -we should try to do in similar to how we did it before because if we do I different it will be the new legal precedence Psy328: PSYCHOLOGY OF LAW MIDTERM NOTES Lecture 1-5 . hierarchical: idea that the empirical: only bound by empirical data laws/governing laws in Canada are -consistent supporting evidence needed bound by the higher court system -this is what the data says, and this is m -i.e. provincial courts have to do interpretation of the data everything the courts above them say to -interpretation needs to be supported by do proving methods were reliable and valid -laws, absolutes, theories -law or absolutes are not done, but theories! adversarial: 2 sides fighting to win and experimental: experimental research, the winner is our new version of the bias, error truth -we want to find an objective truth if at -whoever is the better debater may win all possible -the truth comes form what weve got -the real truth from the evidence so never know 100% for sure prescriptive: telling someone how to descriptive: describing how someone is behave behaving/predicting idiographic: deciding on a case by case nomothetic: based on general principles basis -in general, this is what it is -decided on the specific facts in the particular case certainty: person is guilty or not probabilistic: in psych it would be -then stamped with that label something like 89% its a guilty verdict, never 100% -probability of how guilty a person is on a scale of 0-100 reactive: when something different proactive: imagines any scenario and do comes out, we have to create a new law some research on it -i.e. when the internet came out had to -proactively look at it make new laws operational: applied for real world use academic: how you can apply results to real world Psychology IN the law -explicit and conventional use of psych in the operation of law -the law uses psychology as a tool to further the ends of law -i.e. lawyers use a prejudice measure in a challenge for cause before they get the jury to screen out all the bias jurors -explicit use of some form of psychology (usually a technique) in law Psychology AND the law -psychology research evaluating the assumptions being made in law -psychologists empirically look at the assumptions of the law Psy328: PSYCHOLOGY OF LAW MIDTERM NOTES Lecture 1-5 -jury bias: take a look at the difference between the race and alibi witness and see if theres any differences in bias in the verdict for the defendant why is there a difference and is there a way to remove it Psychology OF the law -the study of law itself -correlational -i.e. when and why people will obey laws -studying the law more along the line of a correlational/archival study The Law in Canada Canada is a common law country What does that mean? Lets look at some history, plus the differences between Common and Civil law Common Law: based on the British system history: kings in England need others to do their job person complaining and defendant would just ague it out and then someone will just decide Civil law: most common law statutes laws written out and inquisitorial Common vs Civil Law Common Law Stare decisis adversarial Civil Law statutes inquisitorial Common law: Most British countries, North American Based on stare decisis or precedence Basically law is created by cases, ultimately by judges who decide these cases Adversarial system of litigation -idea that we have our law system (rules) are based just on previous cases -this is extreme common law -i.e. R V Parks -adversarial: fight it out, whoever shows the most proof, argues the evidence the best will win the case then defendant found guilty or not guilty -this could lead (in extreme) to less getting at the truth and more to winning cases -judge just makes sure everything is going fairly Psy328: PSYCHOLOGY OF LAW MIDTERM NOTES Lecture 1-5 Civil Law: Most European countries Based on statutes Inquisitorial system of litigation developed out of roman body -code -based on statutes -extreme cases, every single law is written down -inquisitorial: the judge is an active participant can ask questions -based more on trying to get to the bottom of the matter difference between the 2: not just codification as the difference, but also better way to separate is the methodological approach to the codes/statutes o -we still do have statutes in common law o -but its briefer and more our main overlying laws to get us to think a certain way when it comes to something more general -the main difference drawn between the 2 is that common law draws abstract rules form specific cases (ie the R V Parks has black defendant, and lawyer said they were worried because of the prejudice that exists in the system) and allowed further cases to cite this previous case and have a wider interpretation (abstract rules from specific case); civil law instead starts with abstract rules and then the judge applies them to specific cases in front of them How Does Canada Fit In? Common law But with statutes for criminal law but not for private or civil (civil with a small c) law Based on stare decisis -criminal system is federal -common law -statutes in Canada are our basis and abstract generalized rule and start creating precedents/stare decisis to cases -statutes are interpreted through precedence and stare decisis -our non criminal law, civil law, we only have common law for that only case laws Quebec has a criminal system; non criminal law is Civil, capital C, for their non criminal law -in Quebec everything is actually written out The Constitution The Constitution Act (1867) B.N.A. Division of Powers Federal vs. Provincial responsibilities s. 91- enacting criminal law and procedures, maintaining federal penitentiaries S. 92 administration of justice, maintaining prisons and jails, property and civil rights
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