Sample Criminal Law Coursework Paper Summary on Errors in Decision Making

Errors in Decision Making

Decision making is an intensive process that requires great input. Sound decision making is based on the accessibility of sufficient information that can be used for decision making. The entire process is founded on information accessibility and can be either successful or result in failure. The decision making process follows specific strategies that include problem identification, problem representation and subsequently analysis and decision making in light of the problem in question. The decision making process may also be erroneous based on different reasons. For instance, aspects such as problem misrepresentation can result in decision making errors (Hardman, 2009).

Problem misrepresentation takes various forms. When there is an indefinite number of parties in a discussion, problem misrepresentation is one of the most possible errors in decision making. Through failure to find a clear problem definition and its scope, decision making can be marred. The effects of misrepresentation on the decision making process are immense. For example the re-sitting of conventions and other groupings has been planned previously due to the effects of problem misrepresentation (Mintz and Derouen, 2010).

The use of analysis and analogies in decision making is another aspect that often results in erroneous decision making. Analogies are used through comparisons between different factors. This is a negative aspect particularly when used in criminal justice. Through analogies, comparisons have led to errors in decision making where it is referred to as precedent judgment. In some cases, the principle behind precedent judgment is based on the availability of sufficient information in support of the same. On the other hand, analogy rarely takes into consideration the factual information that is present for use. This is what causes errors in decision making. Counterfactual reasoning where alternatives to real life situations are developed when there is need for decision making.



Hardman, David. Judgment and decision making (Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009), 19.

Mintz, Alex, and Karl R. DeRouen. Understanding foreign policy decision making (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 59.


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