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School of Psychology

Forensic Psychology

Forensic Psychology Careers

Forensic Psychology careers focus on the interface of clinical psychology and the law. A forensic psychologist brings their clinical skills to assist the courts and triers of fact to render decisions about the mental state of a defendant at the time of a crime, mental competency, jury selection, child custody decisions, criminal sentencing, probation issues, and assessing questions of future dangerousness, among others. Forensic psychology careers open opportunities within a wide range of fields to include legal, correctional, academic, mediation, and research positions. The forensic psychologist draws on both sound clinical training and sound investigative skills enabling them to examine both psychological and legal data from which they examine competing scientifically based hypotheses to develop written and oral reports for presentation to the courts and other members of the legal system. A successful career in forensic psychology blends broad clinical training in psychology with a solid understanding of the law and scientific methodology so that the forensic psychologist can present his or her conclusions to withstand vigorous examination by peers and the adversarial system. Forensic psychology careers bring forensic psychologists to the forefront of social, scientific, and legal issues confronting us today.

Some popular areas of study for forensic psychology careers include: 

  • Expert Witnessing
  • Jury Selection
  • Evaluating for Competency to Stand Trial
  • Evaluating for Mental Status at the Time of a Crime
  • Working with Juvenile Defendants
  • Working with Sex Offenders
  • Evaluating Sexually Violent Predators
  • Child Custody Evaluations

Forensic Psychology Experience

If you are interested in pursuing a forensic psychology career, FIT’s Psy.D Clinical Psychology program offers a forensic experience to help you in your endeavor. Dr. Costopoulos coordinates and teaches courses in the experience.

Courses in the experience include:

  • Fundamentals of Forensic Psychology
  • Clinical Forensic Assessment
  • Forensic Psychology (Psychology & the Law)
  • Multiple options for Forensic Seminars 
  • Multiple Forensic Practicum placements

Forensic Psychology Research

Additionally, Dr. Costopoulos leads a forensic research team to help students in the program who have an interest in forensic psychology careers to gain experience in empirical study related to the topic. Current research topics include

  • Psychopathology, Memory, and Cognition
  • Math Anxiety
  • Mental Health Court
  • Inmate Attachment
  • Jail Re-entry

If you have any questions related to the Forensic experience within the Clinical Psychology Psy.D. program, or questions about forensic psychology careers, please feel free to contact Dr. Costopoulos.