Brian H. Bornstein

Brian H. Bornstein
University of Nebraska at Lincoln | NU · Department of Psychology

About

207
Publications
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Introduction
Skills and Expertise
Additional affiliations
July 2000 - present
University of Nebraska at Lincoln
August 1992 - May 2001
Louisiana State University
August 1986 - August 1991

Publications

Publications (207)
Article
Judicial stress is an important area of study, as judges' decisions have life-altering consequences for the immediate parties and, sometimes, society in general. Although there are numerous studies of judicial stress, few have specifically investigated the relationship between judicial stress and workplace incivility (i.e., rude or condescending be...
Article
This study investigated the impact of jailhouse informant testimony on mock juries. In addition to allowing for jury deliberations, individual judgments (as measured in most prior research) were examined. Two hundred ninety-one undergraduates, in five- to six-member mock juries, heard a fictional murder trial summary in one of three conditions: jai...
Article
Full-text available
America’s founding fathers believed jury trials to be a critical component of an orderly democracy. Yet, fewer than 5% of America’s cases are decided by juries. We present an interdisciplinary review of empirical, legal, and historical literatures to highlight the significance of the disappearing trial. Without juries, direct participation in the j...
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Full-text available
Objectives This study examined how defendants’ immigrant status and ethnicity interact with evidence strength and mock jurors’ cognitive processing traits to influence decisions in a capital trial. Methods A sample of jury-eligible participants acted as mock jurors and read a trial summary in which defendant immigrant status, defendant ethnicity,...
Chapter
Full-text available
Psycholegal research is, by design, a field devoted to evaluating and addressing issues that directly affect the justice system. At the same time, many scholars in the field have experienced first-hand the frustrations of bridging the divide between research and policy or practice. In this chapter we discuss key issues and challenges involved in br...
Article
Public trust in the criminal justice system, including the jury system, is important for maintaining a democracy that is fair for all citizens. However, there is little research on trust in the jury system generally and even less cross-country comparison research specifically. Trust in the jury system might relate to other legal attitude measures (...
Article
Informants are witnesses who often testify in exchange for an incentive (i.e. jailhouse informant, cooperating witness). Despite the widespread use of informants, little is known about the circumstances surrounding their use at trial. This study content-analyzed trials from 22 DNA exoneration cases involving 53 informants. Because these defendants...
Article
Objectives: High-profile incidents of weapon-involved violence, such as mass shootings, have led to a wave of legislative proposals that often focus on prohibiting individuals with mental illness from obtaining or possessing firearms. Previous literature offers limited insight about the unique experiences, knowledge, and attitudes of individuals wi...
Article
The present study examined the presence of a jailhouse informant (JI) on mock jurors’ perceptions of a sexual assault trial. In two experiments, male and female, jury-eligible community members (recruited from Amazon’s Mechanical Turk) read (via Qualtrics) a fictional trial summary in which a defendant sexually assaulted a 6-year-old child or 25-ye...
Article
Full-text available
Informant testimony is a leading cause of wrongful convictions. The Supreme Court has recognized the questionable reliability of informant testimony but has generally held it admissible while emphasizing the existing safeguards built into the legal system. Psycholegal research has demonstrated the overwhelmingly persuasive nature of informant testi...
Article
Three studies developed and tested a new measure of the perceived trustworthiness of the jury system, the 23-item Jury System Trustworthiness (JUST) scale, and assessed the scale’s convergent and discriminant validity. Study 1 assessed the scale’s factor structure and relation to other relevant constructs. In Studies 2 and 3, the JUST scale was adm...
Article
Jailhouse informants are a leading cause of wrongful convictions. In an attempt to preempt such miscarriages of justice, several states (e.g., Connecticut and California) have mandated that judicial instructions be provided to act as a safeguard against false testimony. This study evaluated the effectiveness of these instructions in helping jurors...
Article
The present study explored whether the successful detection of a jailhouse informant's ulterior motives, inconsistencies in testimony, and knowledge of privileged crime details would influence verdict decisions. Undergraduate participants (N = 381, 218 females) listened to a trial transcript in which a jailhouse informant's testimony was manipulate...
Book
This volume consists of up-to-date review articles on topics relevant to psychology and law, and will be of current interest to the field. These topics are currently attracting a great deal of research and public policy attention in the U.S. and elsewhere and will be relevant to researchers, clinical practitioners, and policy makers. Topics include...
Chapter
Münsterberg acknowledges the relationship between hypnosis and suggestibility and addresses popular misconceptions about hypnosis, individual differences in hypnotizability, and the relationship between hypnotism and crime. In the contemporary literature, there is little dispute that hypnosis is a useful mnemonic technique in some respects, but tha...
Chapter
The deception detection method Münsterberg advocates is grounded on principles of association. Although this approach derives partially from a Freudian view of the unconscious, it is not terribly dissimilar to more modern, physiologically based lie detection methods. In recent years, deception detection has become a major focus within psychology an...
Chapter
This chapter focuses on using suspects’ subtle emotional displays as an indication of their veracity. Münsterberg mentions several physiological indicators of an unconscious emotional reaction, such as changes in pulse, breathing, and galvanic skin response. The sorts of physiological measures described by Münsterberg foreshadow the polygraph, whic...
Chapter
As the preceding chapters show, Münsterberg was incredibly prescient in his view of what psychology could offer the law. Nonetheless, he neglected to include a number of topics that are currently of great concern to forensic psychologists, the criminal justice system, and policymakers. For example, at the time Münsterberg wrote On the Witness Stand...
Book
The German American psychologist Hugo Münsterberg’s 1908 book, On the Witness Stand , is widely regarded as “founding” the modern field of psychology and law. The purpose of the present volume is twofold: first, to summarize the chapters and conclusions of On the Witness Stand , making Münsterberg’s insights available to a new generation of scholar...
Chapter
Although Münsterberg introduces this chapter with a clinical case study involving posthypnotic suggestion, the focus is on suggestibility and reconstructive memory processes broadly, including the role of individual differences (e.g., age, gender) and alcohol intoxication, which he supports with both experimental evidence and anecdotal observation....
Chapter
In this chapter, Münsterberg describes a number of cases and experiments that illustrate the vagaries and unreliability of human perception and memory, producing what he refers to as “illusions.” This chapter focuses on the illusions of unconscious transference, change blindness, and the confidence–accuracy relationship. Unconscious transference oc...
Chapter
Here, Münsterberg emphasizes the importance of doing field studies as opposed to laboratory experiments. Contemporary eyewitness researchers have, until recently, largely ignored Münsterberg’s advice to study naïve witnesses. Rather, they have tended to favor well-controlled laboratory studies. This approach has yielded a wealth of useful data, but...
Chapter
In his final chapter, Münsterberg moves from the psychological questions of earlier chapters to the questions of how to prevent crime and whether criminals are “born” or “made.” The psychology of crime, with its implications for prevention, treatment, and punishment, is a large question that continues to be of interest to psychologists, sociologist...
Chapter
Münsterberg frames this chapter by discussing a notorious Chicago case where he received considerable criticism for arguing that the defendant—who was subsequently convicted and executed—had confessed falsely. He presents a number of reasons why suspects might confess to crimes they did not commit, such as instrumental efforts to obtain promised re...
Book
This newest volume in the Advances in Psychology and Law series offers a review of topics critical for forensic practitioners. It covers a variety of topics that have been shown to be of prime interest to those in the field, especially those that impact new research and public policy. Common themes include criminal suspects (interrogations, alibis,...
Chapter
An examination of publication patterns in scholarly journals is one way of gauging what is going on in a particular field. The present study examined 7 years of articles in three leading law-psychology journals (Psychology, Crime & Law; Psychology, Public Policy, & Law; Legal & Criminological Psychology) to determine the substantive topics and type...
Article
Because judges experience a myriad of occupational stressors, they are at risk of experiencing secondary trauma, burnout, negative mental/physical health, poor job performance and low job satisfaction. These experiences might not be uniform, however, as gender and social support might mitigate such stress-related outcomes. Judges from two states in...
Article
Full-text available
Prior research has shown that primary confession evidence can alter eyewitnesses’ identifications and self-reported confidence. The present study investigated whether secondary confession evidence from a jailhouse informant could have the same effect. Participants (N = 368) watched a video of an armed robbery and made an identification decision fro...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined a knowledge-centered theory of institutional trust development. In the context of trust in water regulatory institutions, the moderating impact of knowledge was tested to determine if there were longitudinal changes in the bases of institutional trust as a function of increases in knowledge about a target institution. We hypothe...
Data
Slopes-as-outcomes model 1: Dispositional and governmental trust predicting institutional trust. (DOCX)
Data
Slopes-as-outcomes model 4: Trustworthiness predicting institutional trust. (DOCX)
Data
Slopes-as-outcomes model 2: Dispositional and governmental trust predicting trustworthiness. (DOCX)
Data
Slopes-as-outcomes model 3: Dispositional and governmental trust predicting distrustworthiness. (DOCX)
Data
Slopes-as-outcomes model 4: Distrustworthiness predicting institutional trust. (DOCX)
Chapter
The Federal Rules of Evidence (FRE) mandate the manner in which jurors receive information about the cases presented. This chapter focuses on the FRE and their psychological implications for jurors’ decision-making processes and verdict outcomes. Many of the Rules were enacted based on the belief that they would protect against certain flaws in dec...
Chapter
The right to trial by jury granted by the Constitution is one of the cornerstones of American democracy. Jury trials allow the public to participate in the judicial process, which prevents the process from being unfairly used by the government. Without properly understanding the relevant law, jurors are unable to carry out their duties effectively,...
Article
Attorneys suffer from high rates of stress, alcoholism, and mental health problems that are costly for the legal system and impair their abilities to serve their clients. There is some indication that these problems begin in law school. The present study assessed a cohort of law students at an American law school for their reported levels of stress...
Article
Full-text available
Dear Senator Fischer and Senator Sasse, We write this as citizens, but we all teach at the University of Nebraska College of Law. We hold different political viewpoints and disagree frequentIy with each other on political and legal issues. As law professors, however, we share a deep commitment to the rule of law and an impartial judiciary. We there...
Article
Full-text available
Using confirmatory factor analyses and multiple indicators per construct, we examined a number of theoretically derived factor structures pertaining to numerous trust-relevant constructs (from 9 to12) across four institutional contexts (police, local governance, natural resources, state governance) and multiple participant-types (college students v...
Article
Contemporary natural resource management (NRM) emphasises the role of the public in general and land owners in particular as voluntary participants in the process. Understanding the role of trust in voluntary cooperation is therefore critical, but the current state of the relevant literature is such that it fails to systematically address a few imp...
Book
The purpose of this volume is to consider how trust research, particularly trust in institutions, might benefit from increased inter- or transdisciplinarity. In this introductory chapter, we first give some background on prior disciplinary, multidisciplinary, and interdisciplinary work relating to trust. Next, we describe how this many-disciplined...
Chapter
Full-text available
The purpose of this volume is to consider how trust research, particularly trust in institutions, might benefit from increased inter- or transdisciplinarity. In this introductory chapter, we first give some background on prior disciplinary, multidisciplinary, and interdisciplinary work relating to trust. Next, we describe how this many-disciplined...
Chapter
The movement toward greater team-based research reflects a larger movement among both universities and funding agencies—within the USA and globally—to promote interdisciplinarity. The goals of interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, and transdisciplinary research are defined. A discussion of the pros and cons of interdisciplinary work in general, fol...
Book
As with its esteemed predecessor, this timely volume offers ways of applying psychological knowledge to address pressing concerns in legal procedures and potentially to reduce criminal offending. In such areas as interrogations, expert testimony, evidence admissibility, and the “death qualification” process in capital trials, contributors offer sci...
Book
This first volume of an exciting annual series presents important new developments in the psychology behind issues in the law and its applications. Psychological theory is used to explore why many current legal policies and procedures can be ineffective or counterproductive, with special emphasis on new findings on how witnesses, jurors, and suspec...
Article
Full-text available
The purpose of this volume is to consider how trust research, particularly trust in institutions, might benefit from increased inter- or transdisciplinarity. In this introductory chapter, we first give some background on prior disciplinary, multidisciplinary, and interdisciplinary work relating to trust. Next, we describe how this manydisciplined v...
Article
In the legal system, jurors serve as a reflection of community sentiment. Jurors’ task is to "find facts" and apply the law to those facts, but in the course of doing so, they necessarily make moral judgments about how bad a crime or criminal is when they render verdicts. This process allows jurors to express their own sentiments, which are reflect...
Article
Trust in institutions—also known as institutional trust—is essential to a variety of matters, ranging from the functioning of democracy to assuring the effective operations of the courts to agreeing to cooperate with the police to deciding whether to patronize a business. Although trust in institutions is inextricably intertwined with trust between...
Article
Full-text available
The own-race bias (ORB) suggests that recognition for faces of one's own race is superior to recognition of other-race faces. A popular explanation for the ORB is amount of interracial contact, which may have cohort effects for older and younger adults. We compared White younger and older adults on the ORB utilizing a hybrid facial recognition and...
Article
Full-text available
Previous eyewitness research has aimed to understand when age differences occur in eyewitness memory; however, few studies have explored the underlying social constructs that may explain why older adults sometimes perform more poorly as eyewitnesses. The current research examines stereotype assimilation and age-based rejection sensitivity as potent...
Book
This volume explores the various ways that trust is thought about in contemporary society and studied by social scientists. Specifically, it focuses on the role of trust as a major contributing factor in compliance with authority. Cross-disciplinary research findings by leading experts link new ways of looking at trust and its measurement to emergi...
Article
The court unification movement has progressed in fits and starts over the decades. Recent proposals have been put forth that attempt to continue the move toward a state court structure that utilizes a more coherent approach to governance. Drawing on a survey of court personnel who were asked about a set of proposed governance principles, this artic...
Article
Full-text available
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Article
Full-text available
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Article
Full-text available
The cross-race effect (CRE) is the tendency to have better recognition accuracy for same-race than for other-race faces due to differential encoding strategies. Research exploring the nature of encoding differences has yielded few definitive conclusions. The present experiments explored this issue using an eyetracker during a recognition task invol...
Article
Trying to remember something now typically improves your ability to remember it later. However, after watching a video of a simulated bank robbery, participants who verbally described the robber were 25% worse at identifying the robber in a lineup than were participants who instead listed U.S. states and capitals—this has been termed the “verbal ov...
Chapter
Full-text available
People who are in powerful positions (e.g., government officials, employers, parents) often decide how to allocate goods to other people. Indeed, control over resources is precisely one of the things that confers power. This chapter provides a brief overview of distributive justice theory, which deals with fairness standards for allocating some lim...
Article
Full-text available
The revelation effect is a robust episodic memory phenomenon where individuals are more likely to report that they recognise an item when it is judged after an interpolated task than when it is not. Westerman and Greene proposed a global-matching model explanation of the effect, according to which the recognition bias results from the interpolated...
Article
Full-text available
Although researchers have consistently demonstrated the importance of confidence in public institutions like the courts, relatively little attention has been paid to understanding what confidence itself really is. This article presents data from two samples of community members, thereby building on and extending a preliminary investigation that sou...
Article
Full-text available
The cross-race effect (CRE) is the tendency for eyewitnesses to be better at recognizing members of their own race/ethnicity than members of other races/ethnicities. It manifests in terms of both better discrimination (i.e., telling apart previously seen from new targets) and a more conservative response criterion for own-race than for other-race f...
Article
Full-text available
Appeals for the Ninth Circuit noted several factors utilized by the circuit in order to determine whether the defendant's Sixth Amendment rights had been violated when the jury consulted extraneous material (i.e., the Bible): (1) whether the extraneous material was actually received, and if so, how; (2) the length of time it was available to the ju...
Chapter
Jury nullification, which refers to the jury's intentional disregard of the law as presented in arriving at its verdict, is an important policy concern for the legal system. Despite the well-settled law regarding the issue, the legal field is entrenched in a decades old debate regarding its merits and problems, with proponents arguing that courts s...
Article
This conclusion chapter summarizes, compares, and contrasts the ideas presented across the previous chapters and provides recommendations for areas of future research. The chapter also discusses two populations that come into contact with the legal system that likely experience stressors as a result of their involvement, but have yet to be studied:...
Chapter
The notion that the law should be used as a therapeutic agent has become increasing popular among social scientists and legal professionals. This chapter provides an overview of the ways in which the courts can promote individual wellbeing using therapeutic jurisprudence. Specifically, it describes how legal professionals can apply therapeutic prin...
Chapter
Empirical evidence regarding high levels of attorney distress indicates that lawyers and law students suffer from depression, alcoholism and drug abuse at rates significantly higher than the general population and other professionals. This chapter begins by summarizing the research that has revealed how attorney distress is expressed through depres...
Article
Full-text available
In the present study, we conducted two separate meta-analyses in order to quantify the influence on facial identification accuracy of two variables related to initial memory strength for an unfamiliar face, specifically, length of exposure at the time of encounter and encoding operations as manipulated via stimulus processing instructions. Proporti...
Article
It would be ideal if we knew the best ways to structure the judicial system, the best processes to use to ensure fairness for litigants, and the best incentives to ensure compliance with the law. Unfortunately, as all of us who work in or with the system and those of us who study such issues well know, we do not. So what should we do? As social sci...
Article
This article examines the effectiveness of using different kinds of written reminders to reduce misdemeanor defendants' failure-to-appear (FTA) rates. A subset of defendants was surveyed after their scheduled court date to assess their perceptions of procedural justice and trust and confidence in the courts. Reminders reduced FTA overall, and more...
Article
One of the most important things a judge does when presiding over a jury trial is instruct jurors on the law. No doubt judges themselves are well-versed in the law, and the language of jury instructions is the source of much pre-deliberation wrangling on the part of the attorneys. Yet once judges settle on proper instructions, how effectively do th...
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Full-text available
Two experiments examined how mock jurors’ beliefs about three factors known to influence eyewitness memory accuracy relate to decision-making (age of eyewitness and presence of weapon in Study 1, length of eyewitness identification decision time in Study 2). Psychology undergraduates rendered verdicts and evaluated trial participants after reading...
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This introduction describes what the co-editors believe readers can expect in this Special Issue. After beliefs and expectancies are defined, examples of how these constructs influence human thought, feeling, and behavior in legal settings are considered. Brief synopses are provided for the Special Issue papers on beliefs and expectancies regarding...
Article
Jurors' decision-making processes are often influenced by extra-legal factors, including judgments of defendants and plaintiffs. Two studies comparing the decisions of university students with those of community jurors sought to determine if extra-legal factors such as individual differences (including identity as a student or juror participant), t...
Article
As the challenge of maintaining adequate water quantity and quality mounts worldwide, increasing attention is being paid to the role individual behavior plays in water resources management. Yet water resources management has attracted very little scholarly attention by psychologists. This chapter identifies how selected theories and methods from so...
Chapter
Full-text available
Cases that come to trial in the civil litigation arena typically involve two broad ­decisions by jury or judge: liability or fault, and compensation for injury or loss (there may be punitive damages as well, but these are rare, occurring in only 5% or so of civil trials with winning plaintiffs; see, e.g., Langston & Cohen, 2008; Eisenberg, Goerdt,...