Forensic Psychology is basically a subdivision of psychology that is integrated with law and criminal justice. Forensic psychologists use their psychological knowledge and apply it on studying the mental states of criminals and assisting on issues like child custody, discrimination, dispute resolution, civil damages etc.
The field of forensic psychology has gained popularity in the recent years and has experienced interest and rapid growth. There are plenty of schools in California for students to receive high quality education and training in forensic psychology.
Alliant International University is located in San Diego and is the largest forensic psychology school in the state. The degree programs offered focus on combining classroom learning with practice in the field. The degree programs include PhD and PsyD in Clinical Forensic Psychology, Bachelor’s in Criminal Studies and Master’s in Applied Criminology. California Baptist University offers a Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology, which focuses on psychosocial and biblical understanding of psychopathology, law and psychology, and police psychology. The courses offered in this program include criminal law, theories of criminal behavior, social psychology, human development etc.
Holy Names University in Oakland also offers Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology with similar courses and a focus on counseling psychology. Students who complete this program are eligible for state licensure as Marriage and Family therapists for those who are interested. The Chicago school of Los Angeles does not only offer Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology, but also Psy.D in Clinical Forensic Psychology for students who are interested in a broad range of applied and real-world learning experiences within communities. This degree also prepares students for the important national licensure exam in clinical psychology and the California Board of Psychology exam.
Several schools offer internships and co-op experience, which gives students opportunities to start off their career while getting training from experienced faculty members. Graduates from forensic psychology programs can work in rehabilitation centers, law firms, prisons, schools, government agencies and even police departments.
Related: How to become a Forensic Psychologist.