Document Type


Publication Title

Current Research in Social Psychology

Publication Date



Published in: Current Research in Social Psychology, January 3, 2022.


In the current study we examined the influence of case complexity and pretrial publicity (PTP) through an information processing framework. Dual process models suggest that individuals can process information in a systematic or heuristic manner. We explored the effects of defendant PTP (negative v. positive), language complexity (moderate v. high), and image complexity (moderate v. high) on participant-jurors’ verdicts, damages, and information processing style. Results indicated participants exposed to highly complex language utilized PTP as a heuristic to determine damages. Language and image complexity interacted to predict jurors’ understanding of trial information.