Don't be Happy, Worry: Positive Mood, but not Anxiety, Increases Stereotyping in a Mock-Juror Decision-Making Task

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3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Moods and emotions have the potential to influence the decisions made by jurors. Two theories predict that when people are anxious they will rely more on stereotypes when evaluating other people. However, research results have been equivocal as to whether anxiety increases the use of stereotypes in evaluations of other people. Study 1 (N = 127) and Study 2 (N = 279) used a juror decision-making task to examine whether anxiety would increase the application of stereotypes; it did not. However, the same task in Study 3 (N = 195) detected increased stereotyping by happy participants. These findings support conclusions that anxiety may not increase stereotyping in social judgements to the extent previously believed. Because of this, there is little cause for worry on the part of those involved in the legal system that anxiety experienced by jurors will lead them to make biased judgements based on social stereotypes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)686-699
Number of pages14
JournalPsychiatry, Psychology and Law
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes

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