As a forensic psychology professional, you need to critically analyze statutory and case laws related to psycholegal issues and correctly apply the knowledge from your analysis in your work. The individual research course projects will provide you with the opportunity to analyze the landmark cases related to psycholegal issues.

Fieldwork Observation: Overview

In this course, you will experience a fieldwork placement designed to introduce you to professionals and to specialized practices in the field of forensic psychology. This assignment will help you learn how to apply the knowledge learned in this course in the real world as well as develop and polish your networking skills.

In Module 1, you will investigate and develop a list of potential fieldwork locations for observing and talking with forensic psychology professionals. Develop a list of at least three potential placements. There is a wide range of professionals who work within the legal and correctional systems. Your interaction with these professionals can be face-to-face, as with a tour of a facility or an interview, or it can occur over the phone when face-to-face meetings are not practical.

You have three fieldwork-related assignments in this course.

To prepare for your fieldwork, perform the following tasks:

  • Develop a plan in Module 2 in which you identify options and develop time lines for the fieldwork you will complete throughout the course.
  • Document plans for specific days and times for the observation and conversation scheduled for fieldworks to be conducted.
  • Actively plan, reconfirm, and conduct fieldwork activities; however, the actual scheduling of these activities may be staggered to accommodate fieldwork practitioner’s schedules.
  • Develop alternate plans in the event one or more scheduled activities might be cancelled.

Your fieldwork observation should include the following:

  • Name of the professional
  • Affiliation of the professional
  • Degrees and licensure
  • Types of training in forensic psychology (if applicable)
  • Primary job responsibilities
  • Client population served
  • Any ethical conflicts the professional routinely encounters
  • Recommendations to a graduate student in forensic psychology
  • Other observations as deemed appropriate
  • Reflection on what you learned from the fieldwork experience

By Module 2, you should have a schedule for conducting your fieldwork assignment so that you can submit a fieldwork plan in M2 Assignment 1. You will report on the fieldwork experience in M3 Assignment 2 RA 1.

It is crucial to contact individuals this week in order to arrange a time to meet or converse with them as many of them may have busy schedules and will need advance notice.

Identify Potential Fieldwork Locations

In this module, you will investigate and identify options for observing and discussing with professionals on various aspects of forensic psychology at work in the legal system. The fieldwork observation can occur at a variety of facilities and with a range of professionals, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Forensic psychology professionals in private practice
  • Forensic psychology professionals working in a correctional setting
  • Mental health professionals in facilities providing forensic services such as community-based treatment for offenders or crisis centers accepting involuntarily admitted patients
  • Attorneys who work with forensic psychology professionals as in family law, personal injury for psychological damages, or with issues of competency and criminal responsibility
  • Police departments

Note: Some police departments may only use psychology professionals on a consulting basis. Therefore, it would be helpful to inquire at the local police agency about whether it has a psychology professional among the staff or whether it uses one as a consultant for preemployment evaluations. You may also want to speak with polygraph administrators who assess offenders.

  • Mental health professionals at juvenile detention centers and mental health professionals who provide services to victims of abuse and sexual assault in public and private agencies
  • Polygraph administrators who assess offenders
  • Mental health professionals who work with children and adolescents involved in the legal system, such as juvenile courts

Tasks:

In a minimum of 250 words, respond to the following:

  • Develop a list of three potential fieldwork locations.
  • Describe why each might be of interest and value. Also, include any additional information gathered about each location.

All written assignments and responses should follow APA rules for attributing sources.

Submission Details:

By Saturday, November 19, 2016

Assignment 2: Individual Research Task

Individual Research: Overview

As a forensic psychology professional, you need to critically analyze statutory and case laws related to psycholegal issues and correctly apply the knowledge from your analysis in your work. The individual research course projects will provide you with the opportunity to analyze the landmark cases related to psycholegal issues.

In Module 1, identify at least one landmark legal case or court decision for each of these important psycholegal areas: CST, criminal responsibility (MSO), the right to mental health treatment, the right to refuse psychiatric treatment, coercion to mental health treatment, and participation in treatment and civil commitment of sex offenders.

Critically analyze the essence of the selected cases.

You may be asking what it means to discuss the “essence” of a court decision. The essence of a court decision involves two things: (1) the issue under dispute and (2) how the court decided that issue. You can usually summarize this information in one or two paragraphs. Remember that you need to identify the final decision by the highest court. Landmark cases are almost always the cases that have been appealed to higher courts for a ruling on an issue of law.

Looking Ahead

Through Modules 2 and 3, you should continue to conduct research on professional literature to find additional information regarding the selected cases to create a case report. Note that professional literature may include the Argosy University online library resources, relevant textbooks, peer-reviewed journal articles, and websites created by professional organizations, agencies, or institutions (.edu, .org, and .gov).

You may refer to the following links for additional information:

In M4 Assignment 2, you will create and submit a case report for each case related to competency and criminal responsibility right to treatmentright to refuse treatmentcoercion, and participation in treatment and civil commitment of sex offenders. You are highly encouraged to work on these case reports on a weekly basis and not wait until Module 4 to complete. Write each case report in 2–3 paragraphs, providing your analysis and interpretation of the case. In addition, analyze the roles and responsibilities of a forensic psychology professional in the circumstances presented in each case.

Click here to view a sample case report, which you will use as a template in your M4 Assignment 2 to write your case reports.

Note: Remember that you do not need to use the sample report in this assignment. You only need to write about the essence of the case. You will utilize the sample case format in Module 4.

Landmark Case Selection

In this assignment, you will research specific cases, describe the essence of each case, and critically analyze how each relates to the practice of forensic psychology.

Click here to view a list of landmark cases.

Tasks:

  • Select one case for each of the following six legal areas:
    • CST
    • Criminal responsibility (MSO)
    • Right to receive mental health treatment
    • Right to refuse psychiatric treatment
    • Coercion to mental health treatment
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