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Forensic Psychologist job description provides a free database of job descriptions-medical careers, medical software, doctor jobs

Job Summary

Main responsibilities-Forensic Psychologist job description

Knowledge, Skills and Experience-Forensic Psychologist job description

Forensic Psychologist job description


1. As a qualified psychologist, assumes accountability for own professional actions, exercises discretion in determining how objectives are to be achieved and works independently on a day-to-day basis within the overall framework of relevant organisation/team/service principles, policies and procedures, the professional codes of practice of the BPS and terms and conditions of employment.

2. Provides direct clinical services to clients, their families and other carers, undertaking highly specialist psychological assessments and providing highly specialist individual and group based psychological therapy and intervention as appropriate and

9.   Regularly undertakes applied research and development activities related to the needs of the clients served

      and the Psychology Service as a whole.


10. Participates in supervision, personal appraisal and continuing professional development activities as agreed

      with psychology manager, including general training required in accordance with the policies and

      procedures of the Organisation.


11. In completing duties, draws upon on advanced level specialist knowledge commensurate with a doctoral

      degree in psychology, eligibility for registration as a chartered psychologist and practicing psychologist with the   HPC, and further post qualification specialist training, clinical supervision and experience.


12. In completing agreed duties, plans, organises and prioritises own time, activities and workload (manages

      own clinical caseload, plans group sessions, plans and organises teaching and research activities, organises

      administrative responsibilities, etc).

Principal Duties and Responsibilities (Key Result Areas)




1. Undertakes highly specialist psychological assessments of complex cases, assessing personality, beliefs, attitudes, behaviour, emotional function, and other relevant psychological characteristics and dimensions and factors relevant to the development, maintenance and understanding of the client’s difficulties as appropriate, using standardised psychometric instruments, protocol based assessment tools, self-report measures, rating scales, direct and indirect structured observations and structured and semi-structured interviews as required. Utilises assessment techniques directly with clients and collects information from family members and others involved in the client’s care as appropriate.


2. Undertakes highly specialist assessments of neuropsychological and cognitive function, including attention, intelligence, memory, executive function, aphasia and language, motor skills and sensory function, using specialised neuropsychological tests, materials, equipment and observational and measurement techniques that require precise adherence to standardised administration protocols and that require specific training and appropriately developed physical skills for their proper use (including dexterity and co-ordination when manipulating stimulus materials and demonstrating task requirements, precise timing of stimulus presentations and response times and rates, very high levels of accuracy when measuring responses, high level attention, observation and listening skills when evaluating motor dysfunction or speech deficits, as well as efficient memory skills and concentration.)


3. Scores, collates, analyses, interprets and reports findings of psychological assessments undertaken with clients and others, integrating complex data from multiple sources (obtained using a variety of measures and techniques and collected from a variety of sources) within an appropriate interpretational framework.


4. Develops complex formulations of the client’s difficulties, drawing upon the findings of psychological assessments, relevant aspects of the case history and relevant psychological models, concepts and theory.


5. Develops and implements complex plans for the formal psychological treatment and/or management of the client’s presenting problems, that are based upon highly specialist knowledge and an appropriate conceptual framework, that employ psychological procedures and practices having an evidence base for their efficacy and/or an established theoretical basis for their use and that are provided across the full range of care settings.


Forensic Psychologist job description
















6. Maintains a case load of clients for therapy, the size of which is determined in the light of service needs and objectives and delivers psychological treatments and therapeutic/management interventions to fidelity, protocol guidelines or appropriate professional standards, for individual clients, couples and for families. In providing formal therapy and other psychological interventions i) evaluates and identifies appropriate treatment/intervention options in the light of specialist theoretical and therapeutic models, the findings of assessment and the complex historical and developmental factors that have shaped the individual client and their family, the problem formulation, the evidence base and user characteristics and preferences; ii) employs a range of psychological approaches and techniques individually and in combination as appropriate; and iii) monitors and evaluates clinical progress and reviews and revises the psychological formulation and treatment plan in the light of treatment progress and by reference to differing explanatory models and alternative/reformulated hypotheses.


7. Plans, develops, co-ordinates and delivers therapeutic groups as appropriate, including for example group approaches to the management of stress, anxiety and depression and the enhancement of self esteem and social skills, psycho-educational group approaches to the understanding and self-management of symptoms and problems, and other protocol based or semi structured group interventions. Acts as therapist or co-therapist (with other qualified psychologists, Assistant Practitioners, or other designated clinicians) as appropriate.


8. Together with other team members as appropriate, provides support and advice to the families and natural carers of people with mental health and psychological problems referred to the team/service area, offering behavioural family therapy or systemic family therapy where appropriate and supporting and enabling the delivery of intervention programmes by relatives/carers as appropriate.  


9. Undertakes risk assessments from a psychological perspective and provides psychologically based programmes of risk management for individual clients, and provides advice to other professions on psychological aspects of risk assessment and management.


10. In completing clinical duties, exercises autonomous professional responsibility for the psychological assessment and treatment, and discharge from psychological care, of referred clients and other clients whose problems are managed by psychologically based care plans.


11. When completing clinical duties, receives, obtains and communicates highly complicated, extremely sensitive and highly contentious assessment, formulation and treatment related clinical and personal information, sometimes in emotionally charged, hostile or otherwise challenging circumstances, where there may be constraints on the engagement, motivation, cooperation, acceptance, tolerance or understanding of the service users involved or their families.


12. Collaborates with other members of the MDT in case and care reviews in the context of the Care Programme Approach and other relevant clinical systems applying in inpatient, day patient or outpatient settings.


13. Acts as CPA care coordinator in referred cases where psychological assessment and intervention represent the principle and preferred treatment of choice.

14. Attends and contributes to appropriate multi-disciplinary assessment meetings, case conferences, reviews, etc, providing specialist psychological advice and guidance in relation to problem formulation, diagnosis, treatment and individual care planning and other clinical matters as necessary and providing a psychological perspective or psychological information as required.

15. Directly and indirectly promotes and supports a psychologically informed and evidence based approach to the understanding and management of the problems and needs of all clients across all settings within the service area covered.














16.   Undertakes, if appropriate and agreed with psychology line manager, evidence informed project work in

       respect of a special clinical need, clinical group or clinical problem of relevance to the MDT and service as a    

       whole. In this respect identifies the scale of local need in relation to the clinical problem in question,    

       collaborates with colleagues in planning relevant psychological interventions and solutions and to assist in

       service dissemination and the maintenance of quality standards via the development of protocols, training  

       and networking.


Teaching, training, supervisory, consultative/advisory-Forensic Psychologist job description

1. Delivers in-service training workshops, seminars and lectures on psychological topics for members of the MDT or other professionals within the Organisations (the focus of which will be determined by reference to the team’s service priorities and skills required to meet clients’ needs). As required, plans and organises lectures and workshops, prepares teaching content, materials (including handouts) and aids (including computer assisted), directly provides presentations and evaluates teaching initiatives using appropriate measures.

2. As appropriate, provides occasional presentations on relevant areas of work, relevant clinical or research topics, external training events attended, etc, to members of the Organisation Psychology Service.

3. As appropriate, contributes with other members of the Organisation Psychology Service to the doctoral course in Clinical Psychology and to other University based professional training courses in clinical psychology, counselling psychology and forensic psychology.

4. Provides professional and clinical supervision to Psychology Assistant Practitioners, graduate volunteers and undergraduates on attachment as required. Provides supplementary supervision to Trainee Psychologists in support of primary supervisor, and further to completion of appropriate training, supervises Trainee Psychologists on an independent basis.

5. Provides highly specialist psychological advice, consultancy, guidance and where appropriate supervision to other members of the MDT (e.g. nursing staff) who are involved in client assessment and who provide direct intervention in individual cases and with groups of clients. Supports other member of the MDT in the appropriate identification and use of psychologically informed assessment methodologies and treatment interventions as part of a client’s agreed care plan and as appropriate designs programmes of assessment and intervention for implementation by others. As appropriate, works jointly with other team members in the provision of individual and group based programmes.


6. Provides advice, consultation and training to staff working with the client group to enable team members to incorporate informed psychological practice within their day-to-day work with clients. In this respect, supports other members of the MDT by the development of ‘shared formulations’ of the clients presentation and needs, and advises on psychologically based assessment and intervention techniques that might at a systems level be incorporated within the Team’s operational policy.  


Policy, Service Development, Service/Resource Management, Recruitment and Professional Leadership


1. Contributes to the development, evaluation and monitoring of the team’s operational policies and services, by attendance at meetings at which service developments are planned and discussed and through the deployment of professional skills in research, service evaluation and audit.


2. Contributes to service development initiatives and to the design, implementation and evaluation of service development and governance projects within the psychology service or MDT.


3. Implements new or revised psychology policies or procedures in own area of work and proposes changes and developments in local psychology practices and procedures as appropriate.


4. Draws the attention of professional line manager and other service managers to unmet needs and shortfalls in the availability of psychological services, offers suggestions about service initiatives and developments and advises managers on other aspects of the service where psychological and/or organisational matters require attention.


5. Supports psychology line manager in the co-ordination and day-to-day management of the workloads of Assistant Practitioners, graduate psychologists and undergraduates on attachment and provides professional and clinical supervision to Assistants, graduates and students on as required.


6. Is involved, as appropriate, in the short listing and interviewing of Assistant Practitioner grade and graduate psychologists.


7. Responsible for careful and responsible use, transport and storage of material resources as allocated (including test materials and equipment, books, stationery and IT equipment).


8. Draws to the attention of the psychology manager shortfalls in the material resources necessary to fulfil the post-holder’s expected professional functions or the objectives of the psychology service of which they are part, including test materials, books and relevant equipment.




Research and Service Evaluation-Forensic Psychologist job description


1. Draws upon evidence-based treatment literature, other relevant clinical and experimental research findings and established theoretical models to support evidence based best practice when working directly with clients and their families and when working with and through other members of the MDT.


2. Regularly undertakes R&D activity of benefit to the Team and service as a whole, including where appropriate work evaluating current psychological practice, work related to the development of innovative psychological assessment and intervention procedures and work related to the better care of people within existing care systems. Designs, implements and evaluates research and projects as agreed.


3. Undertakes project management within the Team/service as required, including complex audit and service evaluation with MDT colleagues that enhances the Team’s service provision.


4. Where appropriate, advises team colleagues on matters related to experimental design and methodology and collaborates in research programmes organised by others within the Organisation.


5. As appropriate, co-ordinates and supervises the work of Assistant Practitioners and psychology students undertaking research on a delegated basis.


6. Participates in such systems of clinical audit, quality assurance and governance review as may be agreed in respect of psychology services.


7. Contributes to the development and implementation of governance initiatives and quality assurance systems for use by the MDT as a whole, including for example the development of systems for assessing outcomes, for evaluating user satisfaction with services received etc. In this respect, undertakes specific project management in accordance with agreed work plan.  


8. Analyses data and produces audit and research reports, using advanced statistical procedures and advanced IT skills. Uses complex statistical software (e.g. SPSS) and other information technology and software (including word processing, spreadsheet and databases) as appropriate.


9. Keeps adequate records of service operation in accordance with agreed Team/ Psychology Service/Organisation information systems and ensures the security of confidential data.


10. Collates and submits information to the Directorate Lead Psychologist to assist in the preparation of annual reports on the psychology service provided to Team and Directorate.



Information Technology responsibilities -Forensic Psychologist job description


1. Uses information technology to record client contact information (including the Organisation’s patient data information system, EPEX), to complete data display and analysis, to prepare teaching and training materials and deliver presentations, to prepare reports (including written, graphical and visual material) and to communicate via e-mail. Uses word processing, spreadsheet, data base, statistical, presentational, and desk top publishing software and software for the scoring and interpretation of psychometric and neuropsychological tests.  



Professional Development and Practice

1. Observes professional codes of practice of the British Psychological Society (including the BPS ‘Code of Conduct, Ethical Principles and Guidelines’, 1998, Organisation policies and procedures and terms and conditions of employment.

2. Responsible for working within limits appropriate to qualifications, competence and experience and for professional self-governance in accordance with professional codes of practice and Organisation policies and procedures.  

3. In common with all applied psychologists, receives regular clinical and professional supervision from an appropriately experienced Chartered Psychologist (and if appropriate other senior professional colleagues), in accordance with the BPS Code of Conduct, DCP professional practice guidelines and Organisation Psychology Service policy.

4. Participates in annual personal development/appraisal reviews with the psychology line manager.

5. Completes Organisation MAPPA training course covering physical restraint, de-escalation and breakaway techniques.


6. In accordane with HPC and DCP or DFP Guidelines for CPD and Organisation Psychology Service policy, undertakes such programmes of internal and external CPD, personal development and training as may be agreed with the post-holder’s professional manager at the beginning of the appointment and at subsequent appraisal reviews, ensuring thereby that the post-holder develops and maintains the highest professional standards of practice when fulfilling their duties and responsibilities and that they contribute to the development and articulation of best practice in psychology across the service.

7. Maintains active engagement with current developments in the field of and forensic psychology and related disciplines, gains wider experience of professional psychological practice, continues to develop skills of a reflexive and reflective scientist practitioner and further develops skills and competencies that assist in the performance of current duties and prepare for future duties and responsibilities, through attendance at training events, attendance at special interest groups and relevant clinical forums, reading relevant research and practice literature, visits to other service settings, etc, as well as through regular professional supervision and appraisal.

8. Develops further skills in the area of professional post-graduate teaching and training.

9. Develops skills in clinical supervision via completion of relevant programmes of training, thereby achieving eligibility to independently supervise Trainee Psychologists.  

10. Maintains the highest standards of clinical record keeping (including electronic data entry) and report writing in accordance with professional codes of practice and Organisation policies and procedures.

11. Attends and contributes to Directorate Psychology Meetings and such other Organisation wide psychology service meetings as may be organised.

12. Advises psychologists to whom post-holder is managerially and professionally accountable of any changes in their circumstances that might jeopardise their fitness to practice or their compliance with the Society’s Code of Conduct (including criminal convictions incurred subsequent to completion of Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks).

13. Advises officers to whom they are accountable if post holder believes they have been allocated responsibilities that exceed their level of competence or experience, if they have been allocated a workload they consider unreasonably excessive, if they identify CPD needs relevant to duties they are asked to undertake, or if they otherwise require support.

14. Notifies professional lead and/or the Organisation Director of Psychology Services should post-holder believe that another psychologist’s fitness to practice, or adherence to the Society’s Code of Conduct, has been compromised or breached.


Forensic Psychologist job description

Training and qualifications

The Graduate Basis for Registration (further to completion of an honours degree in psychology accredited by the British Psychological Society, or, in the case of courses that are not accredited or where the first degree is not in psychology, by completion of the Society’s Qualifying examination, or completion of a Society accredited Conversion Course).


Satisfactory completion of a British Psychological Society accredited Doctoral Level postgraduate professional training course in clinical/forensic psychology  completion of which includes the study of models of psychopathology, psychometric and neuropsychological assessment, two or more distinct psychological therapies and lifespan developmental psychology.


Eligibility for entry onto the Register of Chartered Psychologists and to register as a practising psychologist with the HPC.


(Candidates for Clinical Psychology posts who i) possess a qualification in clinical psychology obtained oversees, that does not fully meet UK training requirements; ii) are seeking lateral transfer from another branch of applied psychology; or iii) hold a research degree in a clinical subject, must provide evidence that they have obtained a Statement of Equivalence in Clinical Psychology awarded by the BPS Committee for the Scrutiny of Individual Clinical Qualifications (CSICQ), further to the satisfactory completion of such additional training as is required by the CSICQ.)




Experience of specialist psychological assessment and individual and group based treatment of clients across the full range of care settings, including primary and secondary/ specialist care and inpatient/residential, outpatient and community team settings.

Experience of working with a wide variety of client groups, with clients of all ages across the lifespan and of wide-ranging presenting problems that reflect the full spectrum of clinical complexity and severity.



Experience of teaching, training and/or supervision.

At least one year’s relevant post qualification experience and training, enabling the post holder to provide supplementary supervision to clinical psychology trainees at the discretion of the primary supervisor.


Has further specialist post qualification training, has gained further clinical experience and has received of a minimum of 50 hours clinical supervision whilst working as a qualified clinical psychologist over a minimum of 18 months to 2 years.


Or for a Band 7, experience of specialist psychological assessment and individual and group based treatment of clients across the full range of care settings, including primary and secondary/ specialist care and inpatient/residential, outpatient and community team settings.


Experience of working with a wide variety of client groups, with clients of all ages across the lifespan and of wide-ranging presenting problems that reflect the full spectrum of clinical complexity and severity.


Knowledge and skills-Forensic Psychologist job description

Highly developed theoretical and practical knowledge of the field of clinical psychology, consistent with doctoral level professional training and further post qualification study, training and supervised experience during a minimum of 18 to 24 months as a Specialist Clinical Psychologist.  


Well developed specialist knowledge in the field of clinical psychology commensurate with completion of professional training at Doctorate level.


For all applicants:


Skills in the use of complex methods of psychological assessment commensurate with doctoral level training, including specialist clinical interviewing, behavioural observation, complex psychometric testing and specialist neuropsychological testing.

Able to use psychometric tests and psychological equipment in accordance with standardised timing, stimulus presentation and response monitoring requirements.

Skills commensurate with doctoral level training in the formulation of problems from a psychological perspective and in the implementation of highly specialist psychological therapies, interventions and management techniques that are appropriate for use with complex presenting problems. Able to deliver established/evidenced based psychological therapy to fidelity.

Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills (written and verbal) including the ability to empathically, sensitively and effectively communicate clinical and condition related information to clients, their families, carers and professional colleagues (within and outside the NHS) that is extremely complicated or technical; extremely sensitive and potentially distressing to the recipient; or that is extremely contentious or challenging.

When communicating with patients, carers and colleagues, has the high level interpersonal skills necessary to obtain and convey highly complex, sensitive or contentious information in emotionally charged and extremely emotive settings, in a manner that addresses and overcomes psychological resistance, hostility, antagonism, and problems of motivation and engagement, as well as barriers to understanding arising from cognitive, cultural or linguistic factors.


Ability to respond safely to physical aggression and to promote personal safety and the safety of others, drawing on MAPPA and other relevant training where provided.


Skills in providing consultation and advice from a psychological perspective to members of other professional and non-professional groups.


Doctoral level knowledge of research methodology, research design and complex, multivariate data analysis as practiced within the clinical fields of psychology.


Ability to provide teaching and training on relevant psychological topics, using a variety of complex multi-media materials suitable for presentations within public, professional and academic settings.


Awareness and understanding of the differential needs of people from black and minority ethnic groups and of the service issues arising within a multicultural urban area.


Evidence of continuing professional development consistent with expected standards of the British Psychological Society and relevant subdivisions (Division of Clinical Psychology, Division of Counselling Psychology).


Familiarity with the ethical and professional standards expected of Clinical Psychologists as laid down in the collated BPS ‘Code of Conduct, Ethical Principles and Guidelines’ (1998).



Personal Ability to interact effectively with staff from all disciplines.


Ability to interact and to build and sustain relationships with people with mental health problems and associated disabilities.


Is a ‘team player’ and has demonstrated ability to work and deliver to team and organisational objectives


Ability to maintain a high degree of professionalism, and to reflect on and manage own emotions and those of others, when faced by highly distressing material, problems and circumstances (e.g. when dealing with family breakdown, sexual abuse) on a frequent basis.


Ability to maintain a high degree of professionalism, and to reflect on and manage own emotions and those of others, when faced by challenging behaviour, including frequent verbal abuse and occasional threatened physical abuse.


Ability to work independently, reliably, consistently and with initiative in circumstances where has discretion to work within defined team/Trust policies, service principles, professional codes of practice and other appropriate parameters and to determine how objectives agreed with manger are best achieved.



6. Supervises Assistant Practitioners and other attached graduate psychologists and contributes as agreed and appropriate to the supervision of trainee psychologists in relation to individual cases. Supervises trainee psychologists independently further to appropriate training and experience.


7. Undertakes governance, audit and clinical administrative activities, collecting, collating and analysing data, writing and presenting reports and undertaking project development and implementation as appropriate.  


8.   Uses IT equipment and software as required, including statistical, database, spreadsheet and presentational.

3. Facilitates the dissemination of effective evidence informed psychological practice within the team and service by supporting psychologically informed protocols, guidelines and procedures implemented by other members of the MDT.


4. Provides teaching/training sessions/programmes in psychological principles and practice for other members of the MDT.


5. Provides supervision and ‘liaison-consultation’ services to enable and support client related work undertaken by other members of the MDT.