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Forensic Psych Week 2 Class Notes

by: Rebecca Sumrow

Forensic Psych Week 2 Class Notes PSY BEH 161C

Rebecca Sumrow
GPA 3.9

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This week's notes cover Assessment, treatment, and consultation is forensic psychology as covered in chapter 2 as wells as Expert Testimony and the Role of the Expert Witness as covered in 3 of our...
Class Notes
Psychology, Forensic Psychology, assessment, treatment, Consultation, Expert Testimony, witness
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Rebecca Sumrow on Sunday October 16, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY BEH 161C at University of California - Irvine taught by N. SCURICH in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGY in Psychology And Social Behavior at University of California - Irvine.

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Date Created: 10/16/16
Forensic Psychology – 10/5/16 Class Notes Week 2 Assessment Treatment, and Consultation in Forensic Psychology. Class notes: 10.5.16 Haney’s Taxonomy: different ways that psychology interacts with the law. • Psychology and law o Eyewitness, juror’s decisions, confessions. o Folk psychology: presumptions that people will act some way that they wont for example: confessing to crimes that they didn’t do. o Psychology and law involves researchers studying if people will confess to things they didn’t do. • Psychology of law o Why do people stop at red lights when there is no one watched? Research about why things happen. • Psychology in law: o Where psychologist don’t do research to reform the law but instead involved in the proceedings. (this class will focus on this, clinicians terrifying in court about a legal issue. They are informing the fact finder –judge jury- about an issue.) • What is forensic psychology? o Terms is Latin, means of the forum. Before there was a court of law there was a forum. o The APA is comprised of multiple types of psychologists. o In the 50’s a clinician in UCLA got together with another clinician and wanted to know what other psychologists in his field were doing. They formed a group that would get together before a conference and talk about what they are doing. They wanted to be recognized by the APA. There were about 100 clinicians participating in it at that time. They voted and “psychology and law” won by 3 votes. o Under the official definition, any psychologist who works in the law is considered a forensic psychologist. • Clinical vs. Non-clinical forensic psychology. o Brigham proposed that there should be subsets in legal psych. He wanted clinical psychologists to be called something else within the law. o Clinicians deal with individuals. o Clinical psychology is concerned with alleviating the condition. o Clinicians are also licensed. o Non-clinicians work with data meaning many people. o Everyone else who isn’t a clinician is non-clinical: social psychologists (jury selection), cognitive psychologists (eye witness identification), developmental psychologists (how people change over life). • Clinical vs. Non-clinical forensic psychology. o Clinical § Advantages: their training is standardized in course work, techniques, licensing regulations by the state. When you adopt the more specific definitions you get more congruent training and consistent outcomes. § Disadvantages: having some clinical and some non-clinical causes divisions between psychologists. o Non clinical § Advantages: the training would be more specific to that training. Forensic Psychology – 10/5/16 Class Notes Week 2 Assessment Treatment, and Consultation in Forensic Psychology. § Disadvantage: things like insanity, competency are subjects that non-clinicians would study. • How do I become a forensic psychologist? o The standard response you will get from professors, is that PsyD is not as strong as PhD. o PsyD is research light but more applied psychology. Hands on therapist. o Masters is geared towards being an effective counselor. o PhD programs are on a spectrum but Phd programs at a top research school is competitive (moreso than med school). You have write a doctoral dissertation, defend the dissertation, publish dissertation, conduct research, learn clinical practice. o Comparison between PhD and PsyD: PsyD is a cost (about 120K) but phd is free and you can even be paid. Both make the same money in practice. Some PsyD and MFT programs don’t have to take the GRE. (need strong scores to get into a good program). For clinical PhD, the two things that matter are GRE and experience in research. GPA matters very little because everyone has good GPAs. o Practicum: supervised clinical work. Sitting in with a clinician on therapy. Classes for the 1st 4 years and work on research. 5th year is internship at a psycho hospital. 6th year you finish your dissertation. o Supervised hours must be completed before you graduate (1500 hours) o After phd you have to do another 1500 hours of supervised training. o Board exams to practice : the EPPP & CPSE o For forensic psych you have to do a post doctoral fellowship (USC has a 2 year program and you must be licensed to do it). End of section one • Intro to the legal system o Clinical psychologist is bound by the law and rules of the law. § Types of law: • Criminal law violation of the law that is punishable by imprisonment or a fine. • Civil law is a dispute between two parties and the government is assisting in the resolution of the dispute. o The US is a federation where each state make up their own laws but the constitution is the basis of those. o Statutory law comes our of disputes. o Case law is when courts look at cases and apply precedent. o Stare decisis means that lower courts are bound by what higher courts decide. • Rules of the game: The law • Types of Crimes o Misdemeanors you can go to county jail for up to a year. o Felonies you go to a state prison. § Capital punishment is the death penalty. § Forensic psychologists testify in these cases. o Even though California has death penalty, we have not exercised it in a long time and it is in moratorium. Forensic Psychology – 10/5/16 Class Notes Week 2 Assessment Treatment, and Consultation in Forensic Psychology. • State Courts o Trial courts: limited jurisdiction: small claims, speeding tickets. o Trial court: more than 10k and criminal cases (superior court of CA) o Intermediate Appellate: o State Supreme Court: you can appeal to the feds that you are being detained in error or constitutional deficiency. You can only appeal on the bases that rules were not followed. • Federal Courts o Since this is a federation, the states can craft their own laws in line with the constitution. o Judges are appointed by the president and confirmed by the senate. They cannot be fired within reason. o The jurisdiction of each circuit court is only to that circuit. o They are required to take cases that states think are unconstitutional. o Writ of certiorari means: I want to come before you and for you to hear my case. Only about 1% are granted by a vote of 4 out of 9 justices. • The Conflict between Law and Psychology o Psychology is descriptive in that psychologists describe why and under what conditions people will behave certain ways. Law is prescriptive in that it is how you should act. o Where psychology is empirical and always changing, the law is hierarchical and cannot change what court is above you. o Psycho is nomothetic which concerns the group whereas idiographic describes the group. o Psychology is dedicated to finding truth whereas justice actually has policies that obstruct truth. Justice involves admissible evidence, and proof beyond a reasonable doubt. End of section two • Expert Testimony o They are afforded certain abilities that non-experts are not. o Direct examination is pleasant and they talk about your accomplishments. o The cross examination is adversarial and there are three areas of attack: credentials (question how valid your credentials are), bias (they as how much you are being paid, how often do you testify for prosecution and defense. Usually experts testify for one side more than the other.), validity and reliability. • Testimony Process • Example of cross examination o Redirect. • Testimony Process • Example of cross examination • Testimony Process • Fact witness o Only allowed to describe what you saw. Firsthand observations only. Not opinions, no conjecture. o Therapists can be facto witness only if they testify what they did or documented during therapy. o No hearsay. An assertion: an intentional communication. And an unintentional communication isn’t hearsay. • Expert witness Forensic Psychology – 10/5/16 Class Notes Week 2 Assessment Treatment, and Consultation in Forensic Psychology. o Experts do not need first hand knowledge. o They can provide opinion testimony. o They can provide the ultimate opinion (opinion on the issue at hand). o There is a bar on insanity testimony by expert witness due to the Hinkley assassination attempt trial. “It is my opinion that at the time he committed the crime, he was suffering from schizophrenia and couldn’t understand the nature and quality of the act he was doing.” • Who is an expert? o Experience doesn’t always denote expertise. o The knowledge beyond that of a layperson is too broad and oftentimes not significant enough. • Frye v. United States 1923 o In the 20’s the polygraph was progressive. o Standard for admissibility: it is “generally accepted in the field” and based on scientific standard. o Reason: because judges aren’t scientists and cannot determine soundness of proposed “science.” • Problems with Frye o It is hard to measure acceptance if there are no published articles or field statistics that support what is generally accepted. o It takes time for some new science to take hold and become accepted due to resistance to new findings. o Have to ask in “what field is this accepted?” • Federal Rules of Evidence (FRE) o Most states have crafted their own rules to follow the Federal Rules on the state level. o Efficiency: keep costs down and time down. o Reliability: consistency. o Overall fairness: they don’t maximize truth but they maximize fairness. • FRE 702 o Evidence only has to be relevant to an issue of the case. This is in contrast to Frye because in that, it only has to be generally accepted. • Daubert v. Merrel Dow Pharmaceuticals (1993) o The Supreme Court decided to hear the appeal even though it wasn’t required to. The result was to change rule 702. • Amended FRE 702 o They added the IF clause to 702. o In this opinion, the justices read a lot in “scientific” and felt that the expert testimony had to be the product of the scientific method. • The Daubert standard o Only that is follows the scientific method, not weighing validity. o 4 flexible factors § Has it actually been tested, not capable of being tested. § Consider the error rate. Written by Blackman because he is a math major. He spoke as if there is only one error rate, not false positive and false negative. § Peer review and publication § General acceptance Forensic Psychology – 10/5/16 Class Notes Week 2 Assessment Treatment, and Consultation in Forensic Psychology. • Daubert implications o Frye asks is it generally accepted o FRE asked is it reliable o Daubert o California is a Frye state. • Role(s) of the Expert o Are you a neutral expert? This has been a topic of enormous debate. o Three approaches: § Seymour Pollack: believed objective neutral party to educate the court about knowledge and facts from within the field. Should work for both sides and speak neutrally. § Bernard Diamond: only testify for one side – the defense. Psychologists should have no interest in the state and fed’s attempt to punish defendants and complying with that is a violation of obligations of psychologists. He said it was impartible to be neutral. • Both Pollack and Diamond: should be able to give “ultimate opinion.” § Hired gun: goes against APA ethics.


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