A Mock Trial is a single or multi-day trial simulation where lawyers present the case to mock jurors who are demographically representative of jury-eligible residents from the trial venue. Trial graphics are utilized, when appropriate, throughout the proceedings. Following the case presentation, jurors are given abbreviated jury instructions, complete questionnaires and are divided into jury panels, with each panel deliberating to a verdict. The primary research objective of a mock trial is to assess how a jury will likely decide the case (i.e., verdict outcome and associated damages, if applicable). Other research objectives include examining jury receptivity to openings and closings, assessing how jurors evaluate the credibility and likeability of witnesses as well as the persuasiveness of their testimony and providing lawyers with an opportunity to rehearse their case in front of a jury while assessing jury reaction to attorney presentation style. Because the results of a mock trial are often a significant factor when deciding whether or not to proceed to trial, it is typically recommended that a focus group be conducted beforehand so that the optimum case strategy is being presented during the mock trial for testing.
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