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What is a forensic psychologist?

I've been trying to look it up, but basically everything I find is written in a more professional manner/harder vocabulary words in which I don't understand. If you could please explain it to me in a way easier for high school students to interpret I would be highly thankful. #medicine #law #forensic #forensic-psychology

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Daniela’s Answer

Hi Andrea,

Here it is:

Forensic psychology is the interaction of the practice or study of psychology and the law. Psychologists interested in this line of applied work may be found working in prisons, jails, rehabilitation centers, police departments, law firms, schools, government agencies, or in private practice, to name a few. They may work directly with attorneys, defendants, offenders, victims, pupils, families, or with patients within the state's corrections or rehabilitation centers. Other psychologists interested in forensic psychology focus on the study of psychology and the law. They may work in colleges, universities, government agencies, or in other settings interested in researching and examining the interaction of human behavior, criminology, and the legal system.

Psychologists working in forensic psychology often come from a wide variety of education, training, and work experiences. All hold a doctorate degree in a field of psychology. Some graduate training programs now offer specializations in the field. Some of these psychologists also have education or training in the law or even hold a Juris Doctor - the degree earned by attorneys. Most working in applied settings such as a private practice or prison also hold a license to practice granted from their state's board of psychology following the successful completion of an approved doctoral degree, pre and post doctoral training years, and passing scores on a series of board examinations. The exception to this is that some governmental agencies are considered exempt settings, which allows unlicensed psychologists to practice with supervision for a period of time.

I hope these information can help you. You can read more on:


Good luck!

Thank you! Andrea L.

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Bruce’s Answer

It is a psychologist that specializes in the evaluation of evidence based on their knowledge of pyschology.

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Shawn’s Answer

If you enjoy learning about the science of human behavior and the law, then forensic psychology will probably interest you quite a bit. The field has witnessed dramatic growth in recent years, as more and more students become interested in this applied branch of psychology. However, forensic psychology is about much more than the glamorized views portrayed in television shows, movies and books.

Typically, forensic psychology is defined as the intersection of psychology and the law, but forensic psychologists can perform many roles so this definition can vary.

In many cases, people working within forensic psychology are not necessarily "forensic psychologists." These individuals might be clinical psychologists, school psychologists, neurologists, or counselors who lend their psychological expertise to provide testimony, analysis or recommendations in legal or criminal cases.

For example, a clinical psychologist might provide mental health services such as assessment, diagnosis and treatment to individuals who have come into contact with the criminal justice system. Clinicians might be asked to determine if a suspected criminal suffers from a mental illness, or may be asked to provide treatment to individuals suffering from substance abuse and addiction issues.

Another example is that of a school psychologist. While people in this profession typically work with children in school settings, a school psychologist working in forensic psychology might evaluate children in suspected abuse cases, help prepare children to give testimony in court or offer testimony in child custody disputes.