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PSYC 167. Psychology and the Law. 4 Units.

The course examines the contribution of psychology to the judicial system. Students explore both the role of forensic psychologists in criminal cases and applied psychological research designed to assist police and courts in their functions. Case studies illustrate forensic issues, such as examining serial killers and the uses and abuses of police interrogation in criminal cases. Topics include insanity and incompetency of defendants; psychopathy; problems with eyewitness testimony; issues involved with sentencing (including the death penalty); the mistreatment of children and adolescents by the justice system; and false confessions. Students visit actual course trials early in the semester. Not recommended for first-year students. (GE1A)