How can human behavior be explained? What are the contributing factors to a life of crime? How can the rehabilitation of an offender be achieved? These are just a few of the many intriguing issues forensic psychology addresses. The Forensic Psychology program at Bay Path is designed for you to apply the principles and insights of psychology within the criminal justice system. You can become involved in working with gang members, adolescent and adult offenders, victims and perpetrators of crime including domestic violence, sexual assaults, families, court advocacy, substance abuse, individuals with chronic mental illness, and more.
Bay Path is one of the few women’s colleges in the United States to offer forensic psychology as a major! The demand for expertise in this field is rapidly increasing, with multiple career opportunities. As part of the program, guest speakers are scheduled in various classes to help students learn about the different opportunities in the field of forensic psychology.
A sampling of what you will learn:
- What motivates criminal behavior?
- How are the issues of female offenders different from the needs of male offenders?
- What role does mental illness play in relation to crime, and how do the criminal justice and legal systems address the issues?
- Are psychopaths driven by biological deficits or societal influences?
- How are families affected by incarceration?
- What contributes to offender rehabilitation and effective re-entry back into the community?
- What ethical considerations must be considered when the legal system, criminal justice system, and the mental health system are all involved with a case?
- What is the psychological impact on both perpetrators and victims of a crime, and how are they different?
- What is meant by the school to prison pipeline?
Bay Path’s dedicated faculty bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the courses they teach, featuring the most relevant and up-to-date information in the field. Bay Path values experiential learning. As a student in the Forensic Psychology program, you will have the opportunity to work with the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department and the Department of Youth Services as part of your required coursework. Additionally, students are required to complete an internship in their senior year, and there are also opportunities to complete a competitive Community Based Co-operative Experience and a sophomore level internship. Potential sites include battered women’s shelters, courts, male and female correctional facilities, probation, Department of Youth Services, working with gangs, law enforcement, and substance abuse agencies to name a few.
A sampling of courses in the Forensic Psychology Program include:
- Survey of Forensic Psychology
- Psychology of Criminal Behavior
- Psychology of Female Offenders
- Advanced Seminar in Forensic Psychology
- Physiological Behavior
- Abnormal Psychology
- Introduction to the American Legal System