Forensic Psychology - Main Campus
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
Students of forensic psychology apply the principles and insights of psychology to the fields of criminal justice and law in order to better understand criminal and human behavior.
Graduates from the program embark on a variety of career paths working with adolescent and adult offenders, court advocacy, domestic violence, families, gang members, sexual assault victims or perpetrators, and persons dealing with substance abuse or trauma. Some students enter the workforce upon graduation, while other students go on to pursue master's and doctoral degrees.
Getting Out of the Classroom:
The hallmark of the forensic psychology program is the experiential learning opportunities embedded as requirements in the coursework. Students don’t just read books - they participate! Bay Path has a unique program that allows students to gain experience, network, and explore career opportunities throughout their academic career.
- The RISE-UP Program (Hampden County Sheriff’s Department) - This is a unique integrated learning experience that combines female residents in the Western MA Recovery & Wellness Center with undergraduate students from Bay Path University in a positive, collaborative learning environment. The program focuses on students and offenders working together on issues related to self-esteem, relationships, and addiction.
- Book Club with Incarcerated Youth (DYS/Center for Human Development) - Students participate in a book club with adjudicated incarcerated male youth at the Community Adolescent Treatment Program, a DYS funded juvenile justice program.
- Community Accountability Board (Hampden County Sheriff’s Department) - Students actively participate in the Community Accountability Board meetings, a restorative justice program that helps offenders gain insight into the consequences and effects of their actions as the first steps towards making amends with the community prior to release.
- Neighborhood Watch (Hampden County Sheriff’s Department) - Students attend community meetings that include law enforcement, task forces, community members, and the Sheriff’s Department as they combine efforts to combat crime through the sharing of information and community involvement.
- Addiction Services (Hampden County Sheriff’s Department) - Students will have an opportunity to participate in activities geared towards addiction and recovery. Students may participate in the Western MA Parent Support Group, Phoenix House groups (drug and alcohol treatment for adults), or attend monthly Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery meetings.
- Through Her Eyes Conference (Center for Human Development) - Students in our Psychology of Female Offenders course are able to attend the Center for Human Development's annual Through Her Eyes Conference. The conference is held every year to address the issues facing girls and young women at risk of personal and social dangers in our culture.
The best part of the Forensic Psychology program is the experiential learning opportunities because I got to work with offenders in the high risk re-entry program at the Hampden County Sheriff's Department for my internship, and participate with female offenders in treatment for addiction as part of the RISE-UP program. As part of my coursework I also had an opportunity to work with offenders in the Sheriff’s Department Community Accountability Board, a restorative justice program that helps prepare them for re-entry into the community." - Amber, Forensic Psychology Major
As a Forensic Psychology major, you will:
- Learn the motivations of criminal behavior
- Study the roles of gender, society and mental illness in criminal activity
- Explore ethical considerations that arise when the legal, criminal justice and mental health systems are involved in a case
- Understand how crime and incarceration affects victims and families
- Gain real-world experience through internships at a wide variety of sites including law enforcement agencies, Department of Youth Services, courts, correctional facilities and substance abuse agencies
- Have the opportunity to complement your major with a minor or pursue an ABA-approved Certificate of Advanced Paralegal Studies.
I was able to participate in a book club with incarcerated youth as part of my Psychology of Criminal Behavior course. It was very eye-opening to see how they opened up to us over time and this experience confirmed my interest in wanting to work with youth." - Isatu, Forensic Psychology Major
Other Out-of-Class Learning Opportunities:
- Co-operative Education Program: Students are able to participate in this highly selective program, which melds theory and practice. Students earn 3 credits and $1,100 for 100 hours of training at a local human service organization and community partner.
- Internships: Students gain real-world experience through internships (optional in the sophomore year, required in the senior year) with Bay Path’s Community Partners or other organizations including law enforcement agencies, shelters, courts, correctional facilities and substance abuse agencies.
I have had the opportunity to network with the most amazing people and attend very inspirational and educational conferences like the Center for Human Development's Through Her Eyes Conference." - Alissa, Forensic Psychology Major