Module PPP-4028:
Applied Forensic Psychology

Module Facts

Run by School of Psychology

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Simon Viktor

Overall aims and purpose

The module will provide students with an understanding of the applied and theoretical issues that are central to some of the more complex aspects of the human psyche and behaviour, criminal activity and forensic psychology. You will develop your understanding of applied forensic psychology by studying a structured framework that addresses professional and applied topics such as ethics, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation, and restorative justice before focusing in on specific types of criminally-related behaviours and activities: Crisis negotiation, terrorism, cyberterrorism, dark personality, interpersonal violence, genocide and hate crimes etc. The module will also integrate perspectives from diverse and sometimes opposing areas of psychology (e.g., cognitive, behavioural, biological, social, personality and so forth).

Course content

This module covers a number of core topics over the semester: Ethical issues in forensic psychology; screening and assessment in forensic psychology, restorative justice, Interpersonal violence (Domestic violence/abuse etc.) and cybercrime etc.

Assessment Criteria

good

Reasonable coverage of the topic area. Shows a reasonable level of clarity of synthesis, evaluation, argument and expression. Demonstrates a reasonable level of depth of insight into theoretical and treatment issues. Shows a reasonable level of background reading and study. A reasonably focused answer that is reasonably structured and written in the required academic/APA manner/style. Some grammatical and punctuation errors. Shows some level of original thought, interpretation and deliberation. Shows some synthesis and evaluation of the evidence base presented, rather than just being a shallow over-view. Has a reasonable evidence base (Grade level: B- to B+).

threshold

Shows a weak coverage of the topic area. Has poor clarity of synthesis, evaluation, argument and expression. Demonstrates a weak insight into theoretical issues. Shows limited background reading and study. A poorly focused answer that is unstructured and not written in the required academic/APA manner/style. Many grammatical and punctuation errors. Fails to show any original thought, interpretation and deliberation. Fails to synthesize and evaluate the evidence base presented, it is just a shallow over-view without any depth of understanding or meaning. Has a weak evidence base (Grade level: C+ to C-).

excellent

Shows a comprehensive and accurate coverage of the topic area. Shows good clarity of synthesize, evaluation, argument and expression. Demonstrates depth of insight into theoretical and treatment issues. Shows extensive background reading and study. A highly focused answer that is well structured and written in the required academic/APA manner/style. Few grammatical and punctuation errors. Shows original thought, interpretation and deliberation. Synthesizes and evaluates the evidence base presented, rather than being a shallow over-view without any depth of understanding. Has a good evidence base (Grade level: A- to A*).

Learning outcomes

  1. Show an analytical understanding of forensic psychology and offender behaviour.

  2. Be able to critically evaluate the professional, theoretical and applied issues of forensic psychology (from person-specific factors, to models and treatments).

  3. Clearly show a considered, developed and integrated understanding of the scope, depth and breadth of forensic psychology

  4. Develop skills that promote the understanding of how theoretical models of criminal behaviour, interventions and treatments within both the criminal justice system and society facilitate offender rehabilitation.

  5. Be able to synthesize, evaluate and summarize the evidence base from peer-reviewed literature.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
EXAM Final exam

Students will be able to select three long-answer (LAQs) questions from a bank of questions that will be based on and derived from the module core content.

50
ESSAY Essay

Students will be able to select one essay topic from a list of five topics that will be based on and derived from the module core content.

50

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Lecture

The module will be delivered through weekly lectures that run over the course of the semester.

36
Private study

Private based study to allow for the: (1) Reading of core textbook(s), (2) Literature searching and reading, (3) Planning, structuring and writing course work assessment, (4) Attending module drop-ins and (5) Revising for the final exam.

164

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Caring - Showing concern for others; caring for children, people with disabilities and/or the elderly
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others

Subject specific skills

  • Understand the scientific underpinnings of psychology as a discipline.
  • Apply multiple perspectives to psychological issues and integrate ideas and findings across the multiple perspectives in psychology.
  • Communicate psychological concepts effectively in written form.
  • Communicate psychological concepts effectively in oral form.
  • Be computer literate for the purpose of processing and disseminating psychological data and information.
  • Retrieve and organise information effectively.
  • Handle primary source material critically.
  • Be sensitive and react appropriately to contextual and interpersonal psychological factors.
  • Use effectively personal planning and project management skills.
  • Work effectively under pressure (time pressure, limited resources, etc) as independent and pragmatic learners.
  • Problem-solve by clarifying questions, considering alternative solutions, making critical judgements, and evaluating outcomes.
  • Reason scientifically and demonstrate the relationship between theory and evidence.
  • Comprehend and use psychological data effectively, demonstrating a systematic knowledge of the application and limitations of various research paradigms and techniques.
  • Employ evidence-based reasoning and examine practical, theoretical and ethical issues associated with the use of different methodologies, paradigms and methods of analysis in psychology.
  • Be aware of ethical principles and approval procedures.

Resources

Resource implications for students

Possible purchase of copies of the core textbooks and some additional costs for printing peer-reviewed articles should they choose to print them rather than read them from the screen.

Reading list

Additional peer-reviewed articles will be provided when required to supplement core textbook readings (to be identified).

Courses including this module

Optional in courses: