What is forensic psychology? It is the application of psychology in law and law enforcement. For example, it is used in treating mentally ill offenders, providing expert testimony in court, and also in analyzing a criminal’s mind and intent. So to prepare for this work students need to take criminal justice and civil legal courses as well as psychology courses. And this is what a typical forensic psychology masters program covers.
If you are interested in becoming a forensic psychologist, then you will need a masters degree. This page tells you more about these programs, where to find them, and also associated programs in criminology and justice studies.
What do you study in these programs?
In a forensic psychology masters program, you learn how its principles are applied in a range of settings from correctional institutions to court systems to community-based programs. You also learn to provide psychological services within the criminal justice and civil legal systems. For example, you are trained to evaluate the psychological fitness of individuals who must stand trial. You must state and defend your psychological evaluations in court, so you need to be quick-witted and have good communication skills, as well as having the required psychological and legal knowledge.
Courses covered would include: epidemiology of mental/behavioral disorders; risk factors for violence and criminality; profiling and patterning; psychological testing, prediction and intervention measurement; assessment; criminal and civil law and procedures; forensic treatment and intervention skills; interpersonal skills, communication skills, and, professional standards and ethics. Usually you can select electives that will build your knowledge of how forensic psychology professionals work within an area that interests you, e.g., law enforcement, legal and organizational consultation, and program analysis.
What are the opportunities with a forensic psychology masters?
Forensic psychology research work, consultation and clinical practice have grown considerably over recent years and this growth is expected to continue over the next ten years. There are now various sub-fields that a graduate with a masters in forensic psychology can work in, including: clinical-forensic psychology, developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, criminal investigative psychology. But graduates with a forensic psychology PhD have more career opportunities than those with only a forensic psychology masters degree.
Remuneration is good – in the US, a forensic psychologist salary is around US$70,000 (PayScales.com).
List of schools and programs
- Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
- Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
- Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
- Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
- Forensic Psychology (MA) (Online)
The Chicago School is a not-for-profit, regionally accredited institution with more than 4,285 students at campuses across the country (Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.) and online. TCSPP has been an innovator in the field of psychology and related behavioral science for more than 30 years. TCSPP offers more than 20 degree programs and a wealth of opportunities for international experiences.
- M.A. in Forensic Psychology: Non-Licensure Track
- MA Behavioral Economics
- M.A. Psychology
- And more...
You believe a better world is possible, and you want to be part of it. We share your vision.
Adler University educates students to engage the world and create a more just society. Established in 1952 to build on the pioneering work of Alfred Adler, the first community psychologist, the University offers master’s and doctoral degree programs for social change. Students enroll and complete degree programs at our urban campuses in downtown Chicago and Vancouver.
- Master of Arts in Counseling: Specialization in Forensic Psychology
Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education. Eligible students can receive college credit for prior military experience and coursework—up to 75 percent of the credit needed for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.*
- MS in Psychology - General Psychology
- MS in Psychology
- MS in Psychology - Applied Behavior Analysis Specialization
University of Valley Forge was founded in 1939 and is part of an international network of Assemblies of God colleges and universities.
A private university with undergraduate, graduate and lifelong learning programs, our mission is to prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world.
- MS - Psychology