Published on Thursday, March 8th, 2012 at 4:14 pm and is filed under Psychological Science
What Does Forensic Psychology Study?
Forensic psychology is a science and practice, a fusion of general and applied social psychology at the crime. Forensic psychology is a deviant behavior that is deviating from the moral rules, especially legal rules from a culture. The object of forensic psychology is study and analysis of behaviors implied in the judicial process.
This domain has enjoyed a huge growth lately, because as more students become interested in this branch of psychology. Famous movies, TV programs and books increased this domain, often illustrating genial heroes who solve vicious crimes and detect criminals, basing on psychology.
The Role of Forensic Psychology in Justice
Forensic psychology plays an important role in the criminal justice system, which is very interesting for students who want to apply psychological principles in the legal system.
Normally forensic psychology is defined as an intersection between psychology and law, but forensic psychology can have many roles, so its definition can vary. In this case people who work in forensic psychology aren’t always forensic psychologists. They can be clinical psychologists, school psychologists, neurologists, criminologists, counselors, who offer analysis, advice on legal and criminal cases, by their psychological experience.
What does forensic psychologists ?
For example, a clinical psychologist can provide services such as mental health assessment, diagnosis and treatment for people who come in contact with the criminal justice system. Clinicians may be asked to determine if a suspect has a mental illness or they may be asked to prescribe treatments for people who are addicted of substance abuse.
Another example are the school psychologists. While people from this field who work with children on school issues, those who deal with forensic psychology, can assess cases of child abuse, prepare children to testify in court or give testimony in cases of child custody.
Deviance and delinquency
Deviance refers to violations of social norms: it doesn’t limit to legal laws, encompassing all possible deviations. This phenomenon can be understood only in a social context. Besides negative aspect, it can be a regulator of social life (Emile Durkheim). Deviance strengthens compliance and certifies normality.
Delinquency refers to the violation of legal norms, written laws. It has a statistical dimension, legal, sociological, psychological, economic and cultural outlook. Delinquency can be of three types:
- Real: known as the dark number of crime. It refers to all acts and antisocial actions prohibited by law, whether discovered or punished.
- Discovered: only those facts that are discovered.
- Trial: only that punished according to law.