The Division of Forensic Psychology promotes the professional interests of forensic psychologists and aims to contribute to the ongoing development of psychology as a profession and as a body of knowledge and skills.
The Division of Forensic Psychology is the largest network of Forensic Psychologists in the UK, collectively representing the profession and associated professionals within the field.
- We aim to be responsive in supporting and advising members around professional practice issues
- We are the professional voice for forensic psychology
- We promote forensic psychology in policy development
- We provide continuing professional development opportunities for members
- We publish research and documents on key issues of relevance to our stakeholders
What is Forensic Psychology?
Forensic Psychology is the application of psychology within the legal system to create safer communities and to assist people to find pathways away from criminal behaviour.
Forensic Psychologists work across many settings including, HM Prison and Probation Service, Hospitals, secure children’s homes, police forces, Courts and Universities.
In practice this means Forensic Psychologists assess, formulate and intervene in those engaging in harmful behaviours, provide advice and expertise to other professionals, and develop and facilitate training and knowledge in forensic settings, all with the ultimate goal of contributing to the development of a safer society.
Chair's messageShow content
I feel very honoured to be elected to the Chair of the executive committee of the Division of Forensic Psychology (DFP) and help take forward the vision for this vital profession. I support the promotion of Forensic Psychology Nationally and Internationally with the intention of raising the profile of the work. Also, the application of forensic psychology into a full range of settings in line with the skills and competence.
I have been a Forensic Psychologist for many years and enjoy the wide variety of the roles it offers as a practitioner, researcher and lecturer. I have been a member of the executive committee for many years in varied roles. Each has taught me a great deal. The annual conference, CPD events and publication, Forensic Update provide the opportunity to showcase our work. We are raising to the challenge of the current Covid-19 pandemic and continued to work through the use of digital technology.
As I take on the role of Chair there are a number of challenges ahead. These include:
- Making our division more diverse and inclusive and to aid in this an Expression of Interest have been sought for a person to join the committee to drive this forward
- Increased input from all those we work with in our various settings
- Discussion on the subject of prescribing rights for Psychologists, which as we already know has the potential to be divisive
- Highlighting the impact of Covid-19 on issues such as increased rates of Interpersonal Violence, stalking and so forth
- Assessment, Diagnosis and Formulation, where there may also be some potential for disagreement
- Assistant Psychologists and Recruitment by Competence
- Forging the relationship with the HCPC.
The committee exists for the membership and so all suggestions and views are welcome. Every member can participate in the work of the DFP. Please keep in touch and contact with ideas and responding to shaping the work of this.
Honorary Professor Dr Geraldine Akerman
AFBPS, Chartered and Registered Forensic Psychologist, Europsych, C.Sci.
Strategic PlanShow content
The DFP committee continually review the Divisional strategy and have identified five core strategic aims for the next three years. This is not about writing another plan, but it is about consolidating our achievements over the past several years and trying to place the Division (and our members) in a position to meet current and future challenges and opportunities. To this end, the current strategic plan seeks to focus on: communication with members and external stakeholders; engaging with our members to support mutual learning; developing skills amongst our membership in order to enhance practice and service delivery; collaborating and engaging with our stakeholders to inform policy and practice; and disseminating knowledge pertaining to forensic psychology amongst members and wider forensic psychology community.
DFP Strategic Priorities
The strategic plan should be owned by all members of the Division and as Chair, I invite you to link in with the Committee to share ideas or to support some of the board’s projects and initiatives. Likewise, I ask you to become active participants, using the opportunities that you have in your own professional lives to help support and further these strategic aims whether this be by showcasing your work at conferences, publishing articles, informing government, organisations or policy, or sharing good practice from your own field relating to service delivery.
Together we can further the field of forensic psychology and champion the discipline in the UK and internationally and hopefully this update to the Divisional strategic plan provides the impetus for this.
You can access the full Strategic Plan using the link below (please note: you must be signed-in to access this file):