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Forensic Psychology 2017/2018

  • 5 ECTS
  • Taught in Portuguese
  • Continuous Assessment


Acquire knowledge about the historical and conceptual framework of forense psychology as a specific area of psychology and its relationship with the law.
Identify the forense psychology application, contexts and associated areas, featuring the forms of professional practice, the actors and practical characteristics;
Acquire and apply knowledge about the specifics of forense psychological evaluation process, through the study of practical cases

Recommended Prerequisites

Do not exist.

Teaching Metodology

Classes will include lecture and discussion, but students’ participation will be strongly encouraged. Mandatory and complementary readings for each class will be indicated as teaching and learning method will stress students’ active role. Practical exercises will be provided during classes. A team work data colection and analysis’ project will be conducted extra-classes by students in order to materialize skills developed.

Body of Work

1.Introduction to Forense Psychology:
1.1 historical and conceptual background
1.2 Specificities and object of study
1.3 Practice areas
1.4 The expert in curt

2. Applications for Forense Evaluation:
2.1 Caracteristics and specificities
2.2 Technical problems
2.3 Ethical Issues

3. Psychological Assessment for Criminal Procedure aggressors and victims

4. Psychological Assessment in Civil Procedure and parental responsibilities

5. Evaluation of Risk

6. Forensic report

7. Case Studies

Recommended Bibliography

Agulhas, R. & Anciães, A. (2014). Casos práticos em psicologia forense. Lisboa: Edições Sílabo
Cordeiro, J. C. D. (2011). Psiquiatria forense. Lisboa: Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian
Gonçalves, R. A. (2011). Manual de psicologia forense. Braga: Psiquilíbrios.
Fonseca, A. C. (2009). Psicologia e justiça. Coimbra: Almedina.

Complementary Bibliography

Fonseca, A. C., Simões, M. R., Taborda Simões, M. C., & Pinho, M. S. (2006). Psicologia forense. Coimbra: Almedina.
Gonçalves, R. A. (2010). Psicologia forense em Portugal: Uma história de responsabilidades e desafios. Análise Psicológica, 1(28), 107-115.

Weekly Planning

1. Presentation of the syllabus, assessment methodology and recommended bibliography. Organization of working groups.
2 - Introduction to Forensic Psychology: Historical and conceptual framework; Specifics and object of study
3 - Introduction to Forensic Psychology: Practice Areas; The court expert.
4 - Holiday
5 - Process Forensic Assesment: Characteristics and specificities; Technical problems; Ethical of state of the art.
6 - Assessment test + Introduction to Psychological Assessment in Criminal Procedure about aggressors and victims.
7 - Mini-test correction + Psychological Assessment in Criminal Procedure about aggressors and victims.
8 - Psychological Assessment in Civil Process and parental responsibilities.
9 - Risk Assessment and forensic report.
10 - Open class:"Victims of Domestic Violence and Homicide".
11 - Case Studies presentation.
12 - Assessment test
13 - Case Studies presentation.
14 - Assessment test correction + balance of the semester.

Demonstration of the syllabus coherence with the curricular unit's objectives

Through the acquisition of theoretical knowledge exposed, in particular the historical and conceptual framework, specific and object of study and practice areas, the student will be able to identify the forensic psychology application contexts, featuring the forms of professional performance, the actors and specific practices.
In classes of practical cases studie, the student will be able to apply knowledge about the specifics of forensic psychological assessment process.

Demonstration of the teaching methodologies coherence with the curricular unit's objectives

Through expository methodology, the student will acquire theoretical knowledge that will apply in the discussion of practical cases studie.

relevant generic skillimproved?assessed?
Achieving practical application of theoretical knowledgeYesYes
Adapting to new situationsYes 
Analytical and synthetic skillsYesYes
Balanced decision makingYesYes
Bargaining ability  
Commitment to effectivenessYesYes
Commitment to qualityYesYes
Cultural awareness  
Ethical and responsible behaviourYesYes
Event organization, planning and managementYesYes
Foreign language proficiency  
Information and learning managementYes 
Initiative and entrepreneurship capabilityYes 
IT and technology proficiencyYesYes
Problem Analysis and AssessmentYesYes
Relating to othersYes 
Research skillsYesYes
Understanding multiculturalism and valuing diversity  
Written and verbal communications skillsYesYes
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