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Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology

A two-year, full-time program, the Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology is designed to prepare students to provide assessment and treatment services in a forensic setting, or further training at the doctoral level. Students will be trained in clinical assessment and psychological testing, the diagnosis of psychopathology, treatment planning, individual and group interventions, research design and statistical analysis and program evaluation.

Internships and practica are available at a variety of forensic sites including court clinics, sex offender treatment programs within a secure prison setting, juvenile detention and treatment facilities and community-based mental health settings working with persons with mental disorders who are involved with the criminal justice system. Clinical training are emphasized in the areas of clinical and risk assessment, diagnosing mental disorders, treatment and risk management planning, individual and group psychotherapy, sex offender treatment and risk reduction, and reentry planning and community services. Research-based internships are also available.

Academic Program

The Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology curriculum is arranged in two tracks: (1) Non-Thesis/Practitioner (for students seeking specialized training in psychology prior to entering the work force as master’s level forensic practitioners), and (2) Thesis (for students seeking master’s level training in psychology as preparation for future study toward a doctoral degree in psychology). The nine-course core sequence provides students with the breadth and depth knowledge and competencies needed to be an effective forensically/legally-informed master’s level clinician and/or researcher. Students then select four electives from various areas within Forensic and Legal Psychology. Finally, students take six credits of Thesis or Practicum according to their track, for a minimum of 45 credits. Students pursuing six credits of thesis can enroll in up to six credits of practicum as elective credits.

The Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology seeks to:

  • Prepare graduate students for careers in civil and criminal justice systems as master’s level clinicians
  • Prepare graduate students for further academic training at the doctorate level in forensic and legal psychology
  • Provide students with training in research design and statistical analysis
  • Provide students with training in the areas of forensic assessment, intervention and risk management
  • Provide students with practicum and internship experiences that will promote and develop the professional skills and competencies required in the specialty areas of forensic psychology
  • Provide students with the requisite skills to design and analyze quality research projects.

Applying to the Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology Program

Applicants should have an undergraduate degree in Psychology, Criminal Justice, or related field, and must have satisfactorily completed undergraduate courses in Statistics and Research Methods. To apply, students must submit the following items to the Office of Graduate Admission:

  1. Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate records
  2. Personal statement (two double-spaced pages maximum) describing your interest in Forensic Psychology, career goals, and how you can positively contribute to the graduate program at Roger Williams University
  3. Official report of Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores sent directly by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). The ETS School Code for Roger Williams University is 3729
  4. Three letters of recommendation attesting to your academic accomplishments and potential to succeed in graduate school
  5. If your first language is not English, an official report of TOEFL or IELTS results
  6. Completed application form accompanied by the $50 application fee
Applications are accepted for Fall start only; the application deadline is March 15th.

Requirements for the Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology Program
(All courses are three credits unless otherwise indicated)

A. Required Courses: 27 credits

PSYCH 501 Research Design  
PSYCH 502 Quantitative Methods I  
PSYCH 503 Forensic Psychology  
PSYCH 504 Psychology and the Law  
PSYCH 505 Introduction to Clinical Assessment  
PSYCH 532 Diversity in Psychology  
PSYCH 550 Ethics in Professional Psychology  

An additional assessment course (choose from the following)

PSYCH 506 Assessment in Criminal Law  
PSYCH 507 Assessment Issues in Civil Law  
PSYCH 512 Child Assessment  

A psychopathology course (choose from the following)

PSYCH 520 Developmental Psychopathology  
PSYCH 521 Adult Psychopathology  

B. Advanced Electives: 12 credits selected from the following:

PSYCH 508 Forensic Report Writing  
PSYCH 525 Psychology of Criminal Behavior  
PSYCH 509 Methods of Psychotherapy I  
PSYCH 510 Quantitative Methods II  
PSYCH 511 Children, Adolescents and the Law  
PSYCH 512 Child Assessment  
PSYCH 513 Vocational Training  
PSYCH 515 Introduction to Group Counseling  
PSYCH 519 Methods of Psychotherapy II  
PSYCH 530 Special Topics in Psychology  
PSYCH 531 Family Violence  
PSYCH 533 Law and Mental Health  
PSYCH 534 Advanced Developmental Psychology  
PSYCH 535 Group Dynamics: Methods and Design  
PSYCH 540 Advanced Personality Psychology  

C. Thesis/Practicum: 6 credits selected according to the student's track:

Practicum students take: PSYCH 598: Practicum twice for total of 6 credits.

Thesis students take: PSYCH 597: Thesis twice for total of 6 credits. Students pursuing six credits of thesis can enroll in up to six credits of practicum for elective credits

(Minimum of 45 credits)