Introduction to the Assessment of Criminal Court Competencies

3.5 CE Credits - $70

Instructor: Jason Dana, PsyD

Course Description

This course is designed as an introduction to the specialty field of Forensic Psychological Assessment. The seminar is designed for the novice professional interested in developing a forensic practice. Through a structured review of the ethical guidelines for forensic psychology, Dr. Dana will introduce the foundational concepts, key issues, and seminal court decisions that are the bedrock of this specialty professional practice. The course will introduce the various types of forensic assessments commonly requested by Federal, State, and County courts. Each of these assessments will be discussed with emphasis on the functional capacity required of the defendant. The attendee will learn specific legal standards and constructs pertaining to the field of forensic psychological assessment, as well as their impact on the profession.

Professional integrity and the importance of an objective assessment approach will be highlighted and the novice forensic evaluator will be introduced to various literature sources. At the conclusion of the seminar, attendees will have been exposed to the basic tenets of the profession and be able to confidently pursue more complex forensic concepts on the way to acquiring the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to provide forensic assessment services to the criminal justice system.

Elevate You CE is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Elevate You CE maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

The great news is that most states allow Licensed Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists to gain credits from APA approved sponsors. If you are unsure if your state does, just reach out and we will let you know.

Educational Objectives

  1. Define and differentiate three types of criminal competency assessments.
  2. Identify two legal statutes related to competency assessment.
  3. Demonstrate fundamental legal knowledge regarding court cases that have shaped the profession by identifying three seminal legal decisions that impact forensic assessment.
  4. Discuss the importance of professional objectivity and integrity in forensic practice.
  5. List two sources of professional ethics for the field of forensic assessment.


First Half

  • Introduction to the field of forensic assessment.
    • Differentiate the practice of forensics from clinical practice
    • Ethical considerations for forensic practice
    • Identify various types of competency assessments
  • 15 Minute Break
  • Discuss the value of forensic assessment to the legal system
  • Introduce various legal standards for competency assessment

Second Half

  • Assessment process
  • Collateral data collection
  • Behavioral observations
  • 15 Minute Break
  • Writing the Report
    • Statutory requirements
    • Answering the Court’s question
    • Addressing components of forensic assessment
  • Q&A

Developed by: Jason Dana, PsyD

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Course Dates

Jason Dana

Instructor Bio