Tentative thesis. 

Crime scene shows are changing the public’s expectation in the criminal justice system.


Reality is the power of things as they actually exist and it is often contrasted with what is imaginary. The truth refers to what is real, while falsity refers to what is not. Hollywood directors have made a huge contribution with making truth and falsity blur together. We are all familiar with the long list of programs that have focused on crime and law enforcement, such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Cold Case, and Bones. These television shows typically feature a team of forensic scientists who try to solve and investigate mysterious deaths through the latest technology. In the end the investigators end up deciphering who killed the victim and the cause of death.

Series of questions 

Is it that simplistic in actual reality?

Can television programs affect the way people decide in a case?

What’s real life forensic science like?

Is there statistical evidence to prove it?

My strategies & Framing 

Who? An attorney of New Jersey, Bob Conty.

I am going to be presenting information from Bob Conty, an attorney from New Jersey, a good friend of my fathers. He is the son of the longest standing judge in the state, and has a strong voice in this particular situation.  I will use his voice to support the research I have done on the subject, to strengthen my perspective.


I plan to use multiple methods in developing my ideas. Including statistical facts, scholarly journals and a case where a person was affected from the CSI Effect. I would like to compare the case to what the CSI affect is and how it can change a course in someone’s life. I will be using real life examples, but not personal connections because I have not been affected first hand.

Why this project? 
 I began to look into this topic because it fascinates me to no end.  I want to bring up this phenomenon that really seems to be affecting our justice system in a negative way. I feel as though people should be more aware of the influence Hollywood programs have on real life scenarios.  I really hope to enlighten those who are less educated on the topic. This topic is really significant in the way our Justice System runs. 

1.     Donald , Shelton E.. "The 'CSI Effect': Does It Really Exist?" Office of Justice Programs . March 17, 2008 . National Institute of Justice . <http://nij.gov/journals/259/csi-effect.htm>.

Donald Shelton, an honorable well-known felony trial judge, in his article, "The 'CSI Effect': Does It Really Exist?” claims that the advancement in technology in criminal investigation television programs has extensively impacted the jurors decision in trial.  Shelton supports his implications by presenting empirical evidence on how jurors expect more forensic evidence in cases in which they watch criminal justice programs, commonly known as the CSI Effect.  His purpose is to make readers aware of large amount of influence this phenomenon has had on society in order to help the public come to the realization as to the actuality behind forensic analysis. He establishes a well thought out formal and highly analytical ton with the way he presents the information to his audience of sophisticated readers and knowledge searching citizens.

2.     "The "CSI Effect": Juries Demand More Evidence | LegalZoom. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Mar. 2013 <http://www.legalzoom.com/everyday-law/courtroom/csi-effect-juries-demand>.

Mariah Wojdacz, a writer for Legal Zooms, in her article, “The "CSI Effect": Juries Demand More Evidence” assists that “The CSI Effect” in the United States has affected the forensic laboratory’s and the toll they have taken on in the increase in workload. She supports her claim by illustrating a broad horizon of prosecuting attorneys, forensic scientists and judges opinions in the way jurors see the need for forensic evidences, manly focusing on DNA. Her purpose is to make her readers more aware of the constant demand for more evidence is unrealistic in order to drive in the point that laboratories cannot always come up with an abundant amount of evidence to present. Wojdacz establishes a highly informative tone with her answer seeking, but still sophisticated audience.

3.     Mancini, Dante E.. "The CSI effect reconsidered: is it moderated by need for cognition?" IP research and communities . 03/01/2011. march 16,2013 <http://www.freepatentsonline.com/article/North-American-Journal-Psychology/249058080.html>.

A highly respected Psychologist, Dante Mancini in his article "The CSI effect reconsidered: is it moderated by need for cognition?" suggests that “The CSI Effect” programs have had on jurors and the reasoning behind wanting more evidence  can be reinforced with need for cognition.  He supports his implications by describing a mock trial done on undergraduates by illustration how this showed the need for cognition influenced evidence flaws. Dante’s apparent purpose is to show other ways of supporting how forensic shows have skewed jurors perception in order to help them examine all possibilities that this phenomenon has had on society. He builds a highly bold tone with the audience, attracting the middle classes eyes.  

4.     J. Winter, Ryan. "The 'CSI Effect': Now playing in a courtroom near you?" Judicial Notebook. June 2007. American Psychological Association . march 16,2013 <http://www.apa.org/monitor/jun07/jn.aspx>.

Florida’s International University, PhD, Ryan Winter, in his article, "The 'CSI Effect': Now playing in a courtroom near you?" shows that the “CSI Effect” really does change the way a trial goes. Winter supports his implication by addressing a particular case where evidence or lack of made a huge difference. His purpose is to drive the concept of the need for an abundant amount of evidence out of his reader’s heads in order to help the corrupted justice system. Winter establishes a highly analytical, informative tone with her audience of educated readers.


            The topic I am looking into is "The CSI Effect" and how it skews jurors decisions in the court room.In the popular television series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, highly trained forensic scientists use the lasted technology to solve a crime. In the end they end up deciphering who killed the victim and the cause of death in matter of days, but is it that simplistic in actual reality? Is it true that crime scene shows are changing the public’s expectation in the criminal justice system? Can these shows affect the way people judge a criminals sentence, whether or not their guilty. I plan to focus on and highly analyze  the way the CSI Effect has altered the criminal justice system.  I will be  emphasizing on how prosecutors are pressured to provide more evidence to the jury simply because that’s what they expect due to the perception they receive from criminal law programs. So far I have tried the American Psychological Association Judicial Note-book, Network TV Press Releases on the original series, TV description on CBS, a scholarly article on the Innocence Project, USA Today, National Institute of Justice- journal section, and a few articles from the Library web-sight. Keywords I used to search where The CSI Effect, Criminal justice system, Innocence Project, and real forensic science. I would like to know a little bit more about how to find more information on my topic, I had to keep going back to find primary sources. I plan to solve my problems by researching more in depth.


The nature vs. Nurture debate really concerns the importance of a person's individualism.  What concept controls a person's life? Is it one or the other, or could it be both.  Can a genetic background determine who you are as a person today or is it the upbringing of your childhood that shapes you. Does every experience you go through make your personality you? Can someone who is adopted be the same as their biological parents, or are they more in comparison to their  adopted ones. Are the studies about twins separated at birth true. I really want to compare the two and research others opinions on the matter.I don’t doubt that genes exert a powerful influence, but I  personally think that nurture does play a huge part in forming personality, The debate has been a huge controversy for a long period of time and i like to put my opinion into the debate.

My goal for this issue is to state both sides opinions on the debate, to claim my opinion on what side has the upper hand.