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The CSI effect at university: Forensic science students' television viewing and perceptions of ethical issues

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Although the so-called 'CSI effect' has received attention in the literature for the influence of forensic science television on jurors' expectations of evidence admitted into trials, less research explores the influence of such television programs on university students enrolled in forensic science degrees. This paper describes the quantitative and qualitative results of a study of forensic science students regarding the forensic-related television programs they watch, such as CSI, Bones and Dexter. We asked students to share their impressions of the accuracy, ethics, professionalism and role models in the programs. The results show that forensic science students are almost universally disparaging about the realism of these programs and have mixed impressions of how the programs portray forensic science professionalism and ethics. Most students believed that the programs gave an unrealistic representation of the profession to the public; yet students were also able to identify positive elements for recruitment and education purposes.

Publication Date


  • 2012

Citation


  • Weaver, R., Salamonson, Y., Koch, J., & Porter, G. (2012). The CSI effect at university: Forensic science students' television viewing and perceptions of ethical issues. Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences, 44(4), 381-391. doi:10.1080/00450618.2012.691547

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84887827376

Start Page


  • 381

End Page


  • 391

Volume


  • 44

Issue


  • 4

Place Of Publication


Abstract


  • Although the so-called 'CSI effect' has received attention in the literature for the influence of forensic science television on jurors' expectations of evidence admitted into trials, less research explores the influence of such television programs on university students enrolled in forensic science degrees. This paper describes the quantitative and qualitative results of a study of forensic science students regarding the forensic-related television programs they watch, such as CSI, Bones and Dexter. We asked students to share their impressions of the accuracy, ethics, professionalism and role models in the programs. The results show that forensic science students are almost universally disparaging about the realism of these programs and have mixed impressions of how the programs portray forensic science professionalism and ethics. Most students believed that the programs gave an unrealistic representation of the profession to the public; yet students were also able to identify positive elements for recruitment and education purposes.

Publication Date


  • 2012

Citation


  • Weaver, R., Salamonson, Y., Koch, J., & Porter, G. (2012). The CSI effect at university: Forensic science students' television viewing and perceptions of ethical issues. Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences, 44(4), 381-391. doi:10.1080/00450618.2012.691547

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84887827376

Start Page


  • 381

End Page


  • 391

Volume


  • 44

Issue


  • 4

Place Of Publication