PY0678 - Working in and with the Criminal Justice System

What will I learn on this module?

In this module you will learn how research in forensic psychology is applied in practice.
You will understand how research impacts professional practice, including working with offenders and survivors in a range of contexts (e.g., prison, probation). You will also recognise the wide variety of careers within the Criminal Justice System. Discussions will examine the contribution made by forensic psychology research to the criminal justice system and cultural beliefs/practices.

How will I learn on this module?

You will attend weekly interactive lecture sessions that will provide the framework for the development of understanding based on wider reading. Invited guest speakers will provide first-hand accounts of how forensic psychology is applied in the Criminal Justice System. Weekly discussion boards, along with directed and independent learning will support learning.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

The module tutor will support you by making a variety of resources linked to the lectures and assessments available on the e-learning portal (e.g. PowerPoint slides, lectures handouts) along with links to resources to encourage further exploration of specific research topics. A discussion board on the e-learning portal will be available for students to pose and respond to questions among peers and to the module tutor. This enhances collegiality and also means that support is available to all students. Technology enabled learning will be implemented through the use of Panopto recording software, online submission and marking of the summative assessment.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• MK1 You will be expected to demonstrate critical understanding of a range of applications in forensic psychology by sourcing, critiquing and reviewing a range of peer reviewed research publications
• MK2 You will be expected to demonstrate a critical understanding of how evidence can be applied to construct and evaluate arguments, and reason scientifically on psychological issues.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• MIP1 You will build employability through demonstration of critical appreciation of academic knowledge applied in the real world through evaluation of alternate solutions to problems and show awareness of ethical principles and considerations in the application of forensic psychology
• MIP2 You will be able to understand the role of the module in enhancing your employability skills and its role in career development in your psychology pathway.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• MPV1 You will value research skills to contribute to knowledge generation and dissemination to diverse audiences and so reinforce your Northumbria Psychology Graduate Attributes.

How will I be assessed?

Formative Assessment will be made through discussion based tasks where you will consider questions relating to the communication of science to academic, judicial, social policy and general public populations (MK1, MK2, MIP1, MIP2)

Summative Assessment
Will be through 1) An assignment (3500 words) that requires communication of sourced scientific information to two different audiences: a) A professional (but not forensic psychology expert), and b) the general public (MK1, MK2, MIP1, MPV1). This will be worth 90% of the module mark.

2) The second assessment is a self-reflective account in which you will be asked to consider how this module has impacted on your employability and future career (MIP2). This will be worth 10% of the module mark.

Formative Feedback
Verbal group formative feedback will be provided during and following these discussions.

Summative Feedback
Individual written feedback will be provided on the electronic submission of assessment one. As a minimum, these will identify a strength, a weakness and an area for improvement.

You will be required to arrange a tutorial with your Personal Guidance Tutor for formal feedback on your reflection.





Module abstract

This module focusses on how research in forensic psychology is used when working both in, and with, the Criminal Justice System. Approached from an applied perspective, the focus will be on published research and its impact on professional practice, including careers which work with offenders and survivors in a range of contexts. Discussions will examine the contribution made by forensic psychology research to the criminal justice system and cultural beliefs/practices. Your assessments will require you to provide a written communication of sourced scientific information to two different audiences and to give a reflective review of how the module fits into the pathway you are working toward and how it has impacted on your employability and career.

Course info

UCAS Code C800

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years Full Time or 4 years with optional study abroad year

Department Psychology

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


Useful Links

Find out about our distinctive approach at

Admissions Terms and Conditions

Fees and Funding

Admissions Policy

Admissions Complaints Policy