Criminal profiling/criminal invest. psych./forensic psych.

My sister’s looking into becoming a person who does criminal profiling - finding motives and stuff. What area would that be in?

From what I have been able to gather so far, it would be criminal profiling in criminal investigative psychology in forensic psychology. But as far as college education goes, is this under forensics or psychology? What courses would one take? How long would it take? Can one get a doctorate in this?

What are the differences among criminological psychology, criminal psychology, and criminal investigative psychology?



There are no criminal psychologists/forensic psychologists/criminal profilers or the like here? Or none that want to share their world?


We are saddened. Yea, we weep with tears and shred Our clothes in misery for We remain in ignorance.

WRS - aweeping with tears and ashredding with clothes and aremaining with ignorance.

Former FBI profiler John Douglas wrote that the FBI’s behavorial science department is made up of people promoted from the FBI rank and file on the basis of their good investigative track records. They are not necessarily people with forensic/psychologiy backgrounds who joined the FBI expressly to become a profiler. Unfortunately, I cannot remember which one of Douglas’s books this is from, and I am paraphrasing wildly.

From what I can remember, there really is no recommended academic program for criminal profiling, in part because the concept is still very young, and in part because profiler-type jobs are very few indeed. Your sister’s best bet may be to follow the career track of an ambitious homicide detective/investigator while studying criminal psychology.

I know that’s not much help, but although you remain in ignorance, perhaps this is cause to cease ashredding your clothing, if not reason enough to halt aweeping your tears.

Thank you, sugaree. This really helps, believe it or not. My sister will be very happy to get this info.

We have stopped aweeping and atearing.

WRS - now to find something untorn to wear.

I predict that after the huge popularity of The Silence of the Lambs, The X-Files, and now CSI, (and many other dramas left unmentioned) the FBI is going to be inundated with a horde of applicants who think they want to be criminal profilers and forensic psychologists…

… and who will only find out that the job is nothing like what they expected, and/or that it requires training and experience that are not what they bargained for.

I’m not dissing your sister, Sauron, but she should make sure she learns about the job and its training/experience requirements from real sources and persons, not fiction… if she hasn’t already.

I love watching “Body of Evidence” on Court TV, starring Dayle Hinman.
Here’s a link to her biography, which might be of interest to your sister.

Thanks for your comments, bughunter. This is why my sister asked me to find out stuff about it, so she gets the Straight Dope®™©, as it were.

I don’t watch TV, so I don’t know anything about the shows you mentioned. (She watches TV, but probably not those shows.)