Writing Reports For Court: An International Guide For Psychologists Who Work In The Criminal Jurisdiction by Jack White

Writing Reports For Court: An International Guide For Psychologists Who Work In The Criminal Jurisdiction

byJack White, Andrew Day, Louisa Hackett

Paperback | February 24, 2015

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Psychologists are increasingly being asked to give evidence in court as expert witnesses, yet for some it can be a harrowing experience. Writing Reports for Court provides essential support for psychologists when preparing a court report and giving evidence. A well prepared report underpins an effective court presentation. The credibility of a psychologist called upon to prepare a report for court will be questioned if the document presented is viewed poorly. The court will place little weight on the report and the psychologist''s professional reputation will be placed at risk. This book offers guidance on the content and structure of reports, highlights the importance of assessments that directly address the legal questions under consideration, and includes detailed descriptions of relevant law and practice in Australia, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Singapore. Featuring several comprehensive case studies, this book serves as an excellent resource for any working psychologist who may find themselves in a criminal court as well as any psychologist or student considering a career in forensic work.
Jack White is the principal of White & Associates Psychologists, a specialist forensic psychology practice based in Adelaide. He has a Doctorate Degree in Psychology from the University of Adelaide and is a Fellow of the Australian Psychological Society. He received the 2008 Award of Distinction from the Australian Psychological So...
Title:Writing Reports For Court: An International Guide For Psychologists Who Work In The Criminal Jurisd...Format:PaperbackProduct dimensions:176 pages, 8.5 X 5.5 X 0.68 inShipping dimensions:176 pages, 8.5 X 5.5 X 0.68 inPublished:February 24, 2015Publisher:Australian Academic PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1922117404

ISBN - 13:9781922117403

Appropriate for ages: All ages

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Read from the Book

This book has been written to help psychologists to present the results of their assessments as evidence in court. The report is the most important way in which he or she can communicate the outcomes of a psychological assessment. It is the report that is submitted as evidence, and a poor quality report can have negative implications not only for the individual psychologist but for the profession as a whole. Although the chapters that follow identify a range of issues that are relevant to report writing across a number of different countries, it is immediately apparent that high quality reports have many things in common. A good report will, for example, clearly examine psychological issues that are of direct relevance to the legal decision-making, taking account of the germane local legislation. Indeed, it is legislation that provides definition and direction for the report. The psychologist brings together in a good report general factual and clinical material and considers its relevance to the legal issues under consideration, with the aim of providing a coherent and logical opinion for the court. Good reports follow a logical structure which clearly documents the reasons for the referral, the nature of the assessment, and the opinion of the expert. The chapters that follow describe an approach that provides such a structure, as well as guidance on how to use a range of psychological tools/methods that can inform an opinion. While psychological reports can be prepared to address a wide range of legal questions that arise in different courts and tribunals, our focus here is solely on those reports that are prepared for the criminal court. What makes forensic reports different from general clinical reports has mostly to do with their content and style. The content is often dissimilar from that contained in general psychological reports because of the over-riding need to address forensic questions. The style differs because forensic reports are written to meet the demands of legal forums, non-expert readers and decision-makers. Unlike reports that seek to communicate with like-minded professionals, the court report is written for the lay person and should, therefore, be written in a manner that is readily understandable and free from jargon. The use of legal terminology, with moderation, will however increase the credibility of the report. A series of case examples are used in this book to illustrate these differences. Finally, this book considers how to effectively give oral evidence in court based on the report and how the psychologist might prepare him or herself to do this professionally.

Table of Contents

Foreword Preface About the Authors Chapter 1 Introduction Difference Between a Witness of Fact and an Expert Witness Guidelines for Expert Witnesses The Report Structure The Introduction Background Material Current Legal Matter Chapter 2 The Psychological Assessment Behaviour During the Assessment Essential Elements of Psychological Tests Performance Based Tests Availability of Treatment or Rehabilitation Impression Management and Malingering Psycho-Legal Tests Chapter 3 Opinion Court Report: Mr Jack Jones Court Report: Mr William Pitt Court Report: Mr Leonard Panther Court Report: Mr Jason Collins Court Report: Mr Arthur Askey Chapter 4 Going to Court as an Expert Witness Know the Legal Landscape Pre-Trial Consultation Preparation Getting Qualified or ''Proofed'' as an Expert The Scientific Expert Examination in Chief Cross-Examination Re-Direct Post-Trial Consultation Advanced Performance Chapter 5 Report Writing in Different Jurisdictions United States of America Canada United Kingdom Australia New Zealand Singapore References Appendix - Example Practice Direction Glossary of Psychological Tests Index