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Seminars

The didactic activities of the residency program center on two weekly seminars and a bi-weekly case conference. The seminars are attended by the forensic psychology and forensic psychiatry residents, as well as other trainees. The small group format is highly conducive to discussion.

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Available Seminars

Forensic Psychology/Psychiatry Seminar

Forensic Psychology/Psychiatry Seminar

The Program's main seminar is taught weekly, on Tuesday mornings by UMMS faculty, supplemented by outside presenters. The purpose of the seminar is to provide the critical empirical and theoretical foundations for specialization in forensic psychology/psychiatry. The seminar focuses on reading and discussion of relevant mental health law concepts, forensic assessment methods, research and practice related to psycholegal issues, and ethical and cultural issues relevant to forensic practice. The seminar covers a wide range of forensic content, including topics in criminal and civil forensic evaluations, juvenile evaluations, professional ethics, and psychological evidence and testimony. The seminar, in conjunction with the Landmark Cases seminar described below, provides a good foundation for preparing for ABPP.

Landmark Mental Health Law Case Seminar

Landmark Mental Health Law Case Seminar

This seminar is taught weekly, on Tuesday afternoons, by Paul Noroian, M.D. and Darina Griffin, Esq. The seminar involves residents in the discussion of over 100 of the most important appellate cases in mental health law. The cases cover the recommended list provided by ABPP for those seeking Board Certification in Forensic Psychology. Through this seminar, residents learn how to read and analyze law, and how to think about mental health law and policy. The seminar also includes cases specific to practice in Massachusetts.

Law-Psychiatry Case Conference

Law-Psychiatry Case Conference

Bi-weekly on Monday mornings, the faculty and trainees of the Law-Psychiatry Program meet to hear and discuss a presentation by a Program member or an outside speaker. Presentations may involve forensic cases, descriptions of ongoing or completed research projects, or descriptions of special forensic issues and programs. Residents are expected to present both a research seminar as well as a clinical case conference sometime during the fellowship year.

Mock Trial Exercises

Mock Trial Exercises

Residents participate at an annual Mock Trial exercise with law students at Harvard Law School. In addition, UMMS provides a mock trial exercise with an experienced lawyer, which includes a videotape of the residents testimony, as well as feedback from both mental health and legal professionals.

Other didactic experiences are available throughout the year. Residents are encouraged to attend weekly Psychiatry Grand Rounds at UMMS, which often include clinical topics that are relevant for forensic work. In-service trainings are also available at Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital and at other sites. The Law and Psychiatry Program also produces several day-long workshops for forensic mental health professionals throughout Massachusetts, which residents attend. Residents are expected to attend the annual to attend the annual conference of the American Psychology-Law Society (Division 41 of American Psychological Association). An educational stipend is provided that covers the expenses of this conference.

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