Forensic Mental Health

Forensic Mental Health is one of the fastest growing areas of specialization in mental health and criminal justice. As more cities and states recognize the expanding demand for programs, services, planning, and supervision of clients who have both mental health needs and criminal justice involvement, professionals to address these needs are in high demand.

These professional boundary spanners provide specialized expertise across the many social systems these clients utilize including the criminal justice, mental health, substance abuse, and social service systems.

This 39-credit graduate program will prepare you to be an effective professional in your area of specialization by providing an exciting cross-disciplinary program that includes clinical and non-clinical course work in social science research, law, psychology, criminal justice, substance abuse, and victimology.  You will learn about (a) the many issues facing agencies, individuals, and families who are affected by the forensic mental health system and (b) evidence-based solutions to these complex issues. The development of cultural competency and critical thinking skills are evident throughout the curriculum.

Degree Requirements

  • Completion of all required and elective courses (36 credits)
  • Completion of a 240-hour externship in a forensic mental health setting (3 credits). Field placements are arranged after completion of 30 credit hours of graduate study, including successful completion of FMH 505, PSY 575c, FMH 515, FMH 520

 

Course Requirements

The 13-course sequence in the M.S. Forensic Mental Health Program includes the following course work:

  • SOC 550 Research Methods in the Social Sciences
  • FMH 505 Introduction to Forensic Mental Health
  • FMH 510 Victimology and Victim Services
  • FMH 515 Evaluation and Treatment of Adult Offenders
  • FMH 520 Evaluation and Treatment of Court-Involved Youth
  • FMH 525 Introduction to US Law for FMH
  • FMH 527 Family & Juvenile Law
  • FMH 540 Externship
  • FMH 535 Mental Health Law
  • PSY 575c Abnormal Psychology
  • FMH/PSY 592 Substance Abuse
  • FMH/PSY/LAW elective or Thesis, upon advisement
  • FMH/PSY/LAW elective, upon advisement

 

Elective Course Work in Forensic Mental Health

Elective course work varies from term to term. Examples of elective courses include:

  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Assessment in Counseling
  • Community Mental Health
  • Community Psychology
  • Correctional Mental Health
  • Counseling a Culturally Diverse Population
  • Counseling Skills
  • Court Room Evidence
  • Criminal Procedure
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Elder Law
  • Family Counseling
  • Group Counseling
  • Suicide Prevention, Intervention, Postvention
  • Theories of Counseling

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Upon Completion of the graduate program in Forensic Mental Health, successful students will be able to:

1. Apply appropriate legal analysis to the discipline of Forensic Mental Health.

2. Exhibit mastery of the history, systems and policies integral to the discipline of Forensic Mental Health.

3. Apply key Forensic Mental Health concepts, policies and interventions to persons in the community and institutional settings.

4. Demonstrate cultural competence in Forensic Mental Health interactions.

5. Illustrate the role of evidence and research methods in the development of evidence-based practices.

6. Develop exemplary core competencies in communication, ethics, critical thinking, and team work for professional practice.