What Can I Do With a Degree in Forensic Psychology?
When you decide to earn an MS in Forensic Psychology, you can position yourself for a variety of career opportunities. That’s because a high-quality master’s in forensic psychology program can help prepare you with the skills and insight you need to excel in a number of nonclinical roles within the criminal justice system. Also, as the U.S. aims to improve upon the policies and practices that impact vital aspects of the criminal justice system—such as crime and incarceration rates—qualified and trained professionals will continue to be sought after to make further contributions to the field. Here are a few interesting positions you might consider as you pursue an MS in Forensic Psychology.
Probation or Parole Officer
Professionals serving in these roles provide the social services that are essential to rehabilitating offenders who are in custody, on probation, or on parole. The duties of a probation officer center on supervising offenders who have been put on probation in lieu of serving jail time. Probation officers typically work with adults or juveniles, writing reports that detail a treatment plan and a probationer’s progress to ensure they do not pose a danger to society.
A parole officer has similar responsibilities; however, they supervise individuals who have been released from prison and are now on parole. They aid parolees in rehabilitation by providing the resources that are necessary to successfully re-enter society, such as counseling, job training, and substance abuse treatment.
Both roles require regularly scheduled contact with the individuals under supervision, including phone calls, home visits, work visits, and in-office appointments.
Sometimes referred to as correctional treatment specialists or correctional counselors, these professionals develop rehabilitation plans for parolees and probationers to follow. Often, they will evaluate inmates via psychological testing and various questionnaires as they work with parole officers and other key staff to design release plans. They are responsible for developing case reports that detail an individual’s criminal history and potential for recidivism. Once a course of action has been determined, they go over the conditions and terms of the plan with the specific inmate or parolee. Caseload can depend upon the agency the case manager works for as well as other variables, including the needs and risks associated with the individuals under their supervision.
A victim advocate typically works with individuals who have experienced traumatic events, such as domestic violence and sexual assault. In this role, advocates work to ensure that victims understand their case details and rights, supporting them as they undergo the various underpinnings of the legal process, such as hearings and depositions. Victim advocates can work in a variety of settings, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and private organizations. Though professionals serving in this position play a key role in guiding and advocating for victims by providing vital resources and information, they do not directly tell individuals what they must do and need to be able to function in a strictly supportive capacity.
Advance Your Career by Earning a Forensic Psychology Degree
In Walden University’s MS in Forensic Psychology program, you will examine how criminal behavior is impacted by biological, psychological, and social factors, as well as the various psychological approaches that are used to effectively treat offenders. In addition to a General Program, you can choose from 10 specializations—including Cybercrimes, Family Violence, Terrorism, and Police Psychology—to tailor your program to your personal interests and professional goals. And at Walden, an accredited university, you can even earn your degree in forensic psychology while working full time, because you have the power to take your classes at whatever time of day works best for you, from wherever you have internet access.
Walden University is an accredited institution offering a suite of psychology programs online, including an MS in Forensic Psychology. Expand your career options and earn your degree using a convenient, flexible platform that fits your busy life.
Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of this degree program.
Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.
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