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Judges' Nonverbal Behavior

Early studies by Martin Orne on demand effects and Robert Rosenthal on experimenter expectancy effects established the impact of a sender's nonverbal communication and the way in which it might alter the behavior of others. In the courtroom, judges'nonverbal behavior (e.g., tone of voice, demeanor) often communicates their expectations (sometimes termed leakage) about the case at hand. Jurors, for instance, may interpret a judge's nonverbal cues as evaluations of evidence, attorneys, and parties. In some circumstances, these inferences may become information that affects jurors' decisions, in ways not recorded in the trial record. One meta-analysis of studies examining the impact of trial judges' nonverbal behavior on juror verdicts found a significant and nontrivial relationship (r = .14). Therefore, depending on the nature and extent of ...

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