This course focuses on the psychology of criminal conduct and social psychological explanations of violent crime and its investigation. The course opens by examining criminal behaviour from the point of view of the victims of crime. From this perspective we turn to case studies of criminal behaviour, the crime scene, the classification of crime and principles of investigation. Students are introduced to the process of investigation, crime scene practice for investigators and the problems of offence and offender classification that underlay crime investigation. Theories about the development of criminal behaviour are reviewed and applied to different cases and classes of crime. Topics covered for example, address applied investigative topics and forensic issues as diverse as serial and ‘signature’ killers, stalking, problems of deception and suggestibility in interrogation, the investigative interview, mental disorder and criminal conduct, the role of forensic psychology and criminology and the effectiveness of risk prediction and treatment of violent and dangerous offenders.
A modified problem based learning approach [PBL] is adopted as the teaching method and students are expected to participate in group work and class projects. The PBL exercises culminate in a tutorial class presentation addressing a case based problem and require detailed preparation for a small group or pair of students. PBL focuses on self-learning approached through case studies and problems encountered in practice as well as simulation exercises. Students are involved in the selection of issues and topics covered in tutorials and lectures as these relate to the cases examined throughout the course.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:Upon Successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
- Understand the main theoretical approaches to the study of criminal behaviour and investigative criminology.
- Identify and practice the key elements of the investigative interview and recall the principles and limitations of lie detection.
- Describe the advantages and disadvantages of criminal profiling and behavourial analysis of crimes.
- Execute and demonstrate investigative problem solving with the presentation of a PBL exercise based on a crime event.
- Explain the main behavioural assumptions about offenders in serious and repeat crimes.
Participation in tutorials 10% (LO 1 and 5 )
Problem Based Learning presentation in tutorial of 20 minutes duration: 20% (LO 4)
A one hour short answer exam: 20% (LO 1, 2,and 3)
Major Essay - 3000 words: 50% (LO 1 and 5)
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One 2 hour lecture and 1 hour tutorial for 13 weeks. Students are expected to undertake a further 7 hours of independent study per week during the semester (total of 130 hours).
Requisite and Incompatibility
A selected collection of articles from various sources, combined with a text and a pre-reader is recommended:
Peter B. Ainsworth 2013, Offender Profiling and Crime Analysis (revised edition) Routledge: London
Robert Hare 1993, Without Conscience, Guildford: New York
Laurence Alison, and Rainbow Lew, 2011, Professionalizing Offender Profiling: Forensic and Investigative Psychology in Practice, Taylor and Francis, London.
Peter B. Ainsworth, 1998, Psychology, Law and Eyewitness Testimony, Wiley London
Ron Blackburn 1993, The Psychology of Criminal Conduct, Wiley London
Julian Boon and Lorraine Sheridan Eds, Stalking and Psychosexual Obsession: Psychological Perspectives for Prevention, Policing and Treatment, Wiley London
David Cantor and Donna Youngs, 2008, Applications of Geographical Offender Profiling, Ashgate,
Gudjonsson, Gisli, 2003 ‘The Psychology of Interrogations, Confessions and Testimony: A Handbook’, Wiley, London
Janet L. Jackson and Debra A. Bekerian Eds. 1997, Offender Profiling: Theory, Research and Practice, Wiley, London
Wayne Petherick, 2014 ‘Profiling and Serial Crime: Theoretical and Practical Issues’, Anderson, London 3rd edition ISN 0124059015, 9780124059016
Michael E. Lamb, David J. La Rooy, Lindsay C. Malloy, Carmit Katz, 2011, Children's Testimony: A Handbook of Psychological Research and Forensic Practice, John Wiley & Sons, IISBN 1119996155, 9781119996156
Helen L. Westcott, Graham M. Davies and Ray H. C. Bull Ed., 2003, ‘Children’s Testimony: A Handbook of Psychological Research and Forensic Practice, Wiley, London
Aldert Vrij, 2003, Detecting Lies and Deceit: The Psychology of Lying and the Implications for Professional Practice, Wiley, London
Aldert Vrij, 2011, Detecting Lies and Deceit: Pitfalls and Opportunities, Wiley, London, 2nd Edition
Basic knowledge of introductory criminology or psychology is assumed. Recommended courses are:
SOCY1005 The Criminological Imagination
PSYC2011 Perspectives on Crime from Psychology
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
Offerings and Dates
|Class number||Class start date||Last day to enrol||Census date||Class end date||Mode Of Delivery||Class Summary|
|9663||18 Jul 2016||29 Jul 2016||31 Aug 2016||28 Oct 2016||In Person||N/A|