For more than two decades, I have had continuous funding from the National Science Foundation for my research on jury decision-making and eyewitness identification. Specifically, I conduct research on legal decision making about scientific evidence and the social psychology of voir dire and jury selection. My research in the area of eyewitness identification has focused on the influence of single-blind lineup administration on rates of mistaken identifications.
I am a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, the American Psychological Association, the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI), the Society for Experimental Social Psychology, and the American Psychology-Law Society. I received the 1994 APLS Dissertation Award, the 2000 Saleem Shah Award for Early Career Achievement in Psychology and Law and the 2004 Outstanding Teacher and Mentor Award, all from the American Psychology-Law Society (APLS/Division 41 of the American Psychological Association). My most recent book, The Psychology of Juries, received the 2018 APLS Book Award. I am a past-President of APLS and a past Secretary/Treasurer of SPSSI. I also served as the Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Law and Human Behavior (2012-2018).
I regularly serve as an expert witness on the reliability of eyewitness identifications and as a jury consultant, primarily on issues related to change of venue motions.
- Attitudes and Beliefs
- Law and Public Policy
- Persuasion, Social Influence
- Social Cognition
Research Group or Laboratory:
- Bottoms, B. L., Kovera, M. B., & McAuliff, B. D. (Eds.). (2002). Children, social science, and the law. New York: Cambridge University Press.
- Cutler, B. L., & Kovera, M. B. (2010). Evaluating eyewitness identification. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Kovera, M. B. (Ed). (2017). The psychology of juries. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
- Kovera, M. B. & Cutler, B. L. (2013). Jury selection. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Austin, J. L., & Kovera, M. B. (2015). Cross examination educates jurors about missing control groups in scientific evidence. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 21, 252–264. doi: 10.1037/law0000049
- Cass, S. A., Levett, L. M., & Kovera, M. B. (2010). The effects of harassment severity and organizational behavior on damage awards. Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 28, 303–321. doi: 10.1002/bsl.886.
- Crocker, C. B., & Kovera, M. B. (2010). The effects of rehabilitative voir dire on juror bias and decision making. Law and Human Behavior, 34, 212–226. doi: 10.1007/s10979-009-9193-9
- Greathouse, S. M., & Kovera, M. B. (2009). Instruction bias and lineup presentation moderate the effects of administrator knowledge on eyewitness identification. Law and Human Behavior, 33, 70-82.
- Greathouse, S. M., Sothmann, F. C., Levett, L. M., & Kovera, M. B. (2011). The potentially biasing effects of voir dire in juvenile waiver cases. Law and Human Behavior, 35, 427–439. doi: 10.1007/s10979-010-9247-z
- Kovera, M. B., & Evelo, A. J. (2017). The case for double-blind lineup administration. Psychology, Public Policy and Law, 23, 421–437. doi: 10.1037/law0000139
- Levett, L. M., & Kovera, M. B. (2009). Psychological mediators of the effects of opposing expert testimony on juror decisions. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 15, 124-148.
- Levett, L. M., & Kovera, M. B. (2008). The effectiveness of educating jurors about unreliable expert evidence using an opposing witness. Law and Human Behavior, 32, 363-374.
- McAuliff, B.D., & Kovera, M.B. (2012). Do jurors get what they expect? Traditional versus alternative forms of children’s testimony. Psychology, Crime and Law, 18, 27–47. doi: 10.1080/1068316X.2011.613391.
- McAuliff, B. D., & Kovera, M. B. (2008). Juror need for cognition and sensitivity to methodological flaws in expert evidence. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 38, 385-408.
- McAuliff, B. D., & Kovera, M. B. (2007). Estimating the effects of misleading information on witness accuracy: Can experts tell jurors something they don’t already know? Applied Cognitive Psychology, 21, 849-870.
- McAuliff, B. D., Kovera, M. B., & Nunez, G. (2009). Can jurors recognize missing control groups, confounds, and experimenter bias in psychological science? Law and Human Behavior, 33, 247-257.
- Otis, C. C., Greathouse, S. M., Kennard, J. B., & Kovera, M. B. (2014). Hypothesis-testing in attorney-conducted voir dire. Law and Human Behavior, 38, 392–404. doi: 10.1037/lhb0000092
- Zimmerman, D. M., Chorn, J. A., Rhead, L. M., Evelo, A. J., & Kovera, M. B. (2017). Memory strength and lineup presentation moderate effects of administrator influence on mistaken identifications. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 23, 460–473. doi: 10.1037/xap0000147
- Kovera, M. B., & Borgida, E. (2010). Social psychology and law. In S. T. Fiske, D. Gilbert, & G. Lindzey (Eds.), Handbook of Social Psychology (5th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.
- Attitudes and Social Behavior
- Experimental Social Psychology
- General Psychology
- Introduction to Social Psychology
- Legal Psychology
- Proseminar in Social Psychology
- Psychology of Juries
Margaret Bull Kovera
Department of Psychology
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY
524 West 59th Street
New York, New York 10019
- Phone: (212) 484-1112
- Fax: (212) 237-8930