JSB174 Week 1 Notes.docx

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Queensland University of Technology
Professor Kerry Carrington

Week 1 Notes (collated) - Focused on the psychological part of understanding and investigating crimes - Unit introduces the overlap between psychology and the law - Brigham (1999) two types of forensic psychology: 1. application of clinical psychology to forensic setting e.g. determine if fit to stand trail 2. application of psychological principles to understand issues by the legal system e.g. psychological principles applied to broaden understanding of what makes witnesses identifications accurate, jury influences - These aspects can be described in three ways: 1. psychology of the law (practice of psychology in legal system) 2. psychology by the law (effect of law on the practice of psychology) 3. psychology of the law (research and scholarly inquiry as applied to legal system - Psychology: focuses on objectivity, lack unity and no single shared theoretical framework, low in ecological validity, different explanations and perspectives for one phenomena, evaluates evidence with probability - Law: focuses on advocacy, evaluates evidence with greater certainty - Both focus on individual and predict/explain behaviour (Carson 1995) - Explain causes of behaviour differently, different approaches to knowledge, methodology  Forensic Linguistics – evaluation of language to profile offenders or determine if writings from same author  Forensic anthropology – identification of skeletal/ decomposed human remains  Forensic pathology – branch of medicine concerned with diseases an disorders of the body that relate to questions that might be asked in court (both go hand in hand)  Forensic entomology – study of insects – specialty becoming increasingly important in civil and criminal investigations o Questioned document examination or analysis – handwriting, signature
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