Forensic psychology is the science of using psychology in the field of criminal investigations and law. In recent years, forensic psychology has become extremely popular and the credit for this should go to television serials and movies, which may not always be accurate in their depiction of forensic psychology.
Usually entertainment media show forensic psychologists as profilers who are responsible to deduce the killer's next move. However, the reality is a lot different. Forensic psychologists actually practice psychology in the criminal justice system and civil courts.
Forensic psychologists are actively used in custody trials, insurance claims and other lawsuits. Some psychologists work with family courts where they are responsible for doing child custody evaluations, investigate child abuse, assess visitation risks and offer psychotherapy services to families and children.
Those psychologists who work in civil courts are responsible for giving psychotherapy to crime victims, review competency and give second opinions. While forensic psychologists working in criminal courts have to assess juvenile and adult criminals, work with child witnesses and evaluate mental competency of offenders to see whether they are fit to stand trials.
Many people want to become forensic psychologists without knowing anything about forensic psychology and college to attend. They are completely brainwashed by television and movies and think of the career as something glamorous and thrilling.
The good news for these people and those who are serious about having a career in forensic psychology is that many colleges are now offering degrees that are specifically aimed at forensic studies which combine both psychology and law. To become a forensic psychologist, a person needs to have a Ph.D. in psychology, usually clinical or counseling psychology.
Once a person earns his doctoral degree in psychology, he has to undergo training and get relevant experience. Thereafter, he has to apply for a certification from the American Board of Forensic Psychology. In fact, the board is trying to help forensic psychologists by offering a certificate that certifies them as Diplomat of Forensic Psychology.
If you are interested in law and psychology, forensic psychology may be the right career choice for you and you should check out schools that are offering forensic studies in order to embark on your career.
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