Student Work & Research in Forensic & Legal Psychology

Study of the Prevalence of Pedophilia in the General Population

Under the supervision of a faculty member, several students are collaborating to replicate an earlier study exploring the prevalence of pedophilic sexual interest in a college student sample. The project emerged from in-class discussion. It is hoped that results can enhance understanding of paraphilic disorders and inform efforts to reduce sexually abusive behavior.

spcaLA Court Diversion Program for Youth Evaluation Study

Under the supervision of a faculty member, students are conducting a program evaluation of the Los Angeles Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (spcaLA) Court Divrsion/Humane Education Program (conducted in coordination with the Juvenile Offender Intervention Network and the Office of the Los Angeles County District Attorney). Preliminary results suggest increases in prosocial responses, empathic development and a reduction in antisocial behavior in the youth participants.  The expectation is that the aforementioned results will continue to engender prosocial behavior in the youth participants post-program completion as well as result in decreased recidivism rates which positively impact the youth, their families and communities and society as a whole.

Combatting Terrorism with Psychology

A faculty member is leading a team of intelligence concentration students on research that will be presented at the inaugural Intelligence Studies Consortium at Marymount. The team will present findings on predictive behaviors of extreme violence. It combines intelligence analysis tradecraft with psychological evaluations. Twenty five cases were selected to meet the criteria; several will be presented at the conference.