BA Psychology: Forensic Psychology Degree Online

Bachelor's Degree in Forensic Psychology Online from SNHU

Is an Online Degree in Forensic Psychology Right
for You?

Obtaining your BA degree in Forensic Psychology online is a flexible way to pursue a career that combines psychology, criminal investigation and law. If you enjoy working with others and dealing with clients or criminal offenders to help solve challenging criminal investigations, this may be the right field for you. The Forensic Psychology online program from Southern New Hampshire University provides the research skills, knowledge of psychology and critical-thinking ability to deal with a variety of issues facing the legal system.

Contact us to learn about the SNHU difference.

Why a Forensic Psychology Degree Online
at SNHU?

As a private, nonprofit, accredited university, SNHU focuses on ensuring you gain the skills you need to succeed.  Whether you enroll in the Forensic Psychology degree program online or at any of our five regional campuses, you will benefit from an SNHU education:

  • High-quality instruction from our Psychology Department Faculty.
  • Quality education at one of the most affordable tuition rates available
  • Choose how you want to learn; online, campus-based or a combination of both.  
  • A traditional university, with over 80 years history of educating successful professionals.
  • 24/7/365 access to class- attend when it is most convenient for you.
  • An opportunity to join the Psych Club. High-achieving students are invited to join Psi Chi, the Psychology International Honor Society.

Message from our Psychology chair.

Forensic Psychology Degree Learning Outcomes:

Our students receive a solid liberal arts foundation for a well-rounded education that supports your study of forensic psychology. Tailor your program with electives focused on your area of interest. Our online format provides a small class environment, enabling our professional faculty to give you the personalized attention you need. Become well-versed in major psychological concepts, human behavior and research methods through our four-year forensic psychology degree online program.

Students study theories such as:

  • How psychologists serve as expert witnesses and advisors in courts.
  • Motives and patterns of criminal behavior.
  • Definitions for insanity.
  • Treatment, rehabilitation and assessments used in corrections and in private practice.
  • Eyewitness memory.
  • Criminal profiling.

Forensic Psychology students will focus on:

Knowledge and Field Application

  • Understand human thought and behavioral concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, trends and ethical issues
  • Demonstrate psychological knowledge, skills and values during experiential learning experiences 
  • Develop insight into behaviors and mental processes and apply effective management and improvement strategies

Research

  • Apply fundamental research methods in psychology: research design, data analysis and interpretation 
  • Optimize research activities using the latest technologies 
  • Use major research methodologies to critique, analyze and interpret results of psychological research

Critical Thinking and Communication

  • Use critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry and the scientific approach to assess and address behavioral and mental process issues 
  • Demonstrate critical thinking abilities gained through experience with the scientific method and research methodologies 
  • Display effective written and oral communication skills, correct use of APA format and acquire extensive computer skills

Multi-Cultural Awareness and Understanding

  • Understand how to work with diverse populations and how culture influences individual beliefs and values

Forensic Psychology Careers

Forensic Psychology degree graduates have a strong liberal arts background to pursue graduate studies in psychology or other social sciences. Graduates have a thorough understanding of psychological principles and how to apply them to social and organizational issues in the real world.

The knowledge you obtain in the Forensic Psychology degree program can be applied in a number of careers in government, criminal justice and the private sector.

Transfer of Credit

If you are a student who wants to transfer to SNHU or if you simply want to finish what you’ve started, we try to make transferring as easy as possible. We will accept up to 90 transferred academic credits and we automatically complete an official credit evaluation as part of the application review process.

Curriculum

Required Core Courses

School of Arts and Sciences Required Courses

BIO-210: Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology
Discussion/comparison of the principles of mammalian form and function. Includes molecular and cellular mechanisms of major processes (such as muscle contraction, neural transmission, and signal transduction) and examines the structure and function of the 11 organ systems of the human body. Laboratory exercises (BIO-210L) to follow lecture topics.

Select two of the following:

JUS-101: Introduction to Criminal Justice
This course covers the nature, scope and impact of crime in the United States, independent and interdependent operations and procedures of police, courts and corrections, and introductory theories of crime and delinquency. The course introduces the justice model in a systematic way whereby students delve into the numerous components of the justice system including law enforcement, legal and judicial process and correctional operations. Career opportunities will be fully covered throughout the course.
JUS-325: Law, Justice and Family
A full-fledged review of the justice system's response to the establishment and maintenance of family in the American culture. How the family is defined, its heritage of rights and protections and the differentiated roles of parent and child are central considerations. Further review includes a look at family dissolution, divorce, custody and support disputes and the ongoing problems of visitation. The emerging problems of spousal and child abuse will be keenly analyzed and how the legal systems provide protection from these abuses will be closely scrutinized.
JUS-468: Crimes Against Children
This is a course that examines criminal activity targeted against children. The course will focus on the physical and sexual abuse, neglect, kidnapping, and sexual exploitation of children. Students will explore methods of identifying victims, investigating offenders, and court presentation of criminal cases. Special attention is focused on the dynamics of the relationship between victims and offenders and how that is a factor in the investigation and prosecution of criminal acts.
JUS-485: Forensic Law
An interdisciplinary course covering law, criminal justice, science, and technological issues in the evidentiary arena. Coverage in the course provides a broad-based assessment of expert witnesses, microanalysis, pathological evidence, admissibility and investigatory practice, ballistics, fingerprints, vascar/radar, and photographic techniques. Contrasted with criminalistics, subject matter of this course is primarily evidentiary. More particularly, the course will delve into the rules of evidence, which guide the admissibility of forensic evidence in a court of law. Examination includes threshold tests for reliability and admissibility, qualification of witnesses competent to testify, scientific rigor required for admission and case law determinations on the use and abuse of scientific evidence.
POL-210: American Politics
This course offers a broad introduction to the structure and function of the American political system at the national level, including the roles played by the president, Congress, the courts, the bureaucracy, political parties, interest groups and the mass media in the policy- making and electoral processes. This course places special emphasis on how the efforts of the framers of the Constitution to solve what they saw as the political problems of their day continue to shape American national politics in ours.
POL-306: The American Legal Tradition
This course offers a broad introduction to the American legal tradition, including the structure and function of the courts, the legal profession, legal education, and the politics of judicial selection. As an introduction to what it means to "think like a lawyer" in the United States, students learn how to write parts of a predictive legal memorandum of the type that first-year law students learn how to write, in which they analyze a legal issue of concern to hypothetical clients by applying the reasoning and conclusions in selected judicial opinions to the facts of the clients' case.
Prerequisites:
GOV-110 or POL-210
SCI-215: Contemporary Health
This course exposes students to the three major dimensions of health -- physical, emotional and social. Health, nutrition, substance abuse, infectious diseases and stress management are among the issues that will be discussed. Students will learn to intelligently relate health knowledge to the social issues of our day. For students on program plans/catalogs prior to 2012-13; this course does not satisfy the university core science requirement.
SOC-213: Sociology of Social Problems
Students in this course analyze contemporary social problems in America and other societies. Issues include economic limitations, class and poverty, race and ethnic relations, sexism, ageism, and environmental and population concerns. Offered every year.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112
SOC-317: Sociology of the Family
This course is a sociological examination of the family institution in America and other societies. Traditional and nontraditional family patterns are studied to provide students with a structure for understanding sex, marriage, family and kinship systems. Offered every other year.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112
SOC-320: Sociology of Gender
The examination of gender in society. Students will explore the social construction of gender, gender identity development, sexuality and power, and other aspects concerning the meanings and implications of being 'male', 'female', or 'transgendered'.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112
SOC-326: Sociology of Deviant Behavior
This course is a sociological analysis of the nature, cause, and societal reactions to deviant behavior, including mental illness, suicide, drug and alcohol addiction and sexual deviation. Offered every other year.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112
SOC-328: Sociology of Aging
Students in this course examine the basic social processes and problems of aging. Social and psychological issues and issues involved with death and dying are discussed. Offered every other year.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112

Major Courses

PSY-108: Introduction to Psychology
This course provides students an introduction to the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Students prepare for more advanced concepts in upper-level Psychology courses by learning the basics of how to evaluate research and exploring various areas of specialization within the discipline. Offered every semester.
PSY-223: Research I: Statistics for Psychology
How do psychologists organize, summarize, and interpret information? Students in this course study applications of statistical methods in psychological research and practice. The emphasis of the course is on the conceptual understanding of statistics so that students can read and conduct psychological research; those skills will be applied to students' original projects in Research Methods II: Methodology & Design. Computation of tests will be conducted on the computer. Students will build upon statistical knowledge and develop an in-depth conceptual and practical understanding of hypothesis testing, tests of significance, standardization, correlation, and analysis of variance in a wide variety of psychological uses. Students will learn the theory of statistical decisions, practical application of statistical software, and how to analyze journal articles. This course typically should be completed during the first semester of the sophomore year.
Prerequisites:
MAT-240
PSY-224: Research II: Scientific Investigations
Students in this course will develop an understanding a variety of research methods, including experimental, survey, correlation and case-history techniques. They will become aware of the strengths and weaknesses of each method and understand when each method is best used. Offered every year. Writing intensive course.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H and MAT-240 or MAT-245
PSY-444: Senior Seminar in Psychology
This capstone course integrates previous classroom and practical experience with a focus on current issues in psychology. This course likely will include cross-cultural aspects of psychology, ethics, recent career trends in psychology and other topics dictated by current events in psychology. Coverage may change over time, but the basic focus on integrating the past and anticipating the future for psychology seniors will be the major concern. Offered every year. Writing Intensive Course.
Prerequisites:
PSY-224 and three from: PSY-211, 215, 216, 257, 300 or 305

Select four of the following:

PSY-211: Lifespan Development
The purpose of this course is to engage students in meaningful exploration of theories, basic concepts, and research methodologies in psychological development. Students will gain an understanding of patterns of human development from conception through death, including the biological, cognitive, and social-emotional development and the interplay between these areas. This course will also explore the roles of environmental and genetic factors, culture and history, continuity and change in development. Offered every semester.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-215: Abnormal Psychology
This course offers students an opportunity to better understand human behavior. It also studies the similarities and differences between normal and abnormal reactions to environmental stimuli. Offered every year.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-216: Psychology of Personality
Personality is studied using theories, applications, and individual and group patterns of behavior formation. Offered every year.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-257: Social Psychology
Social psychology is an interesting, dynamic study of how people's thoughts, feelings and actions are affected by others. Issues discussed include prejudice, conformity, interpersonal attraction and violence. The scientific methods of studying such phenomena are emphasized. Offered as needed.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-300: Biopsychology
This course explores how the brain influences our behaviors, thoughts, and feelings. Topics include: evolution, genetics, anatomy and function of the nervous system, psychopharmacology, brain dysfunction, neuropsychological testing, sleep and circadian rhythms, neuroplasticity, emotions, and mental illness.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-305: Cognitive Psychology
Cognitive psychology focuses on mental processes; we explore research and theory relating to memory, thinking, problem-solving, and language. Applied topics will include learning skills to help improve memory, accommodating memory/language disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and dyslexia, and understanding how brain scanning techniques can be used to understand memory.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H

Psychology Electives

Choose four (4) 200/300 level PSY electives

or

Choose one (1) concentration

Forensic Psychology Concentration Courses

The following two courses should be taken in place of the psychology electives:

PSY-205: Forensic Psychology
Students will learn how psychology, as a science and a practice, applies to questions and issues relating to law and the legal system. Emphasis will be placed on witness testimony and the social psychology of the courtroom. Topics will include recovered memories, adolescent violence and murder, strategies for interviewing witnesses, expert testimony, and factors influencing the credibility of witnesses, victims and offenders.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-310: Criminal Psychology
This course will provide the student with insights about crime from a psychological perspective. Specifically, the course will focus on how a criminal offender is influenced by multiple systems within the psychosocial environment. This course examines and evaluates the role of psychological factors in understanding the motives behind antisocial acts. Throughout the course, students will acquire knowledge and practice in the application of psychological methods to understanding criminal behavior.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108

Select Two of the Following:

PSY-257: Social Psychology
Social psychology is an interesting, dynamic study of how people's thoughts, feelings and actions are affected by others. Issues discussed include prejudice, conformity, interpersonal attraction and violence. The scientific methods of studying such phenomena are emphasized. Offered as needed.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
PSY-315: Counseling Process and Techniques
This course examines the history and philosophy of specific helping professions in the fields of psychology, sociology and human services. Several broad theoretical perspectives will be studied and applied in role-play situations. Offered as needed.
Prerequisites:
PSY-108 or PSY-108H, and PSY-216
SOC-324: Sociology of Crime and Violence
The course examines the nature, causes, and consequences of crime and violence to a society. Applying a legal and sociological perspective, the course examines: 1) the structure of the law and the criminal justice system; 2) the nature and causation of criminal behavior; and 3) the various types of crime and criminality.
Prerequisites:
SOC-112

Free Elective Credits: 30

Total Credits: 120

SNHU's online degree programs meet the needs of today's students while ensuring educational quality and real-world applicability. Contact us to learn more about the SNHU difference.

Contact Us
 
Admission

Phone: 888.327.SNHU
Email: enroll@snhu.edu