Careers in forensic psychology involve the intersection between psychology and criminal justice. Forensic psychologist are the most commonly licensed psychologist and can find a engaging careers in a variety of settings. according to Psychology Today. Here are five career paths that you can take as a forensic psychologist:
1. Victim Advocate
A career in forensic psychology could lead you to becoming a victim’s advocate. Victim advocates are specifically trained to assist victims of crimes and their families. Victim advocates are full service providers that contribute a wide range of support options. As a victim advocate, you would provide the victim with emotional support as well as information and resources on the criminal justice process. You may also attend court hearings with the victim, help find shelter and transpiration, and referrals to social service programs. You may work as a victim advocate in a police station, court, prison, or a nonprofit organization.
2. Investigative Researcher
Forensic psychologists who work as an investigative researcher service attorneys directly. As an investigative researcher, you collect and analyze evidence of criminal behavior to aid in the attorney’s case. You may have to interview witnesses, conduct legal research, draft reports, and prepare exhibits for trial.
3. Expert Witness
Forensic psychologist are often called upon to provide expert testimony about the nature of a criminal defendant and the alleged crime. In order to be consider an expert, you have to have certain qualifications and expertise that you gain through years of experience in your career as an forensic psychologist. As an expert witness, you will be hired by either prosecutors or defense attorneys. You could be asked to testify as to the defendant’s competency to stand trial, his or her sanity, and the motivations behind the crime. Forensic psychologist can also serve as experts in child custody cases and provide evidence as to the emotional state of the parents and children.
4. Crime Analyst
A career in forensic psychology goes hand in hand with law enforcement. Police need to be able to understand and spot patterns of criminal behavior so that they can combat crime. As a crime analyst, you would work directly with law enforcement officers to provide demographic, socio-economic, and other data analytics of potential criminal behavior. This information allows police to identify the who, what, when, and where of crime.
5. Forensic Case Manager
Forensic case managers work with incarcerated youth and adults in order to prepare them for life success after they get out. As a forensic case manager, you would identify specific recovery goals of individual inmates, create recovery plans, and connect inmates with support systems outside of jail. You may also provide victim counseling, substance abuse counseling, anger management counseling, and conflict resolution.
Related Resource: 5 Professional Organizations for Forensic Psychologist
Forensic psychology is a rapidly growing field that boasts many different career paths. Apart from researching or teaching for a school or college, you can work with law enforcement, attorneys, crime victims, incarcerated persons, and non-profits. A career in forensic psychologist can be a rewarding way to apply your expert knowledge to improving the lives of others and aiding your community.