Pub. date: 2005 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952514 | Print ISBN: 9780761927310 | Online ISBN: 9781412952514| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Prisons and jails are among the largest employers of psychologists in the United States. Psychologists working in prisons and other correctional institutions are sometimes referred to as “correctional” or “forensic” psychologists. These psychologists are involved in classifying, profiling, assessing, managing, and treating prisoners. They also provide institutional reports and carry out research and evaluation. Some prison psychologists deliver consultative services, such as counseling and personnel interviews, to other staff; others offer advice during hostage negotiations or other crises. Correctional psychologists typically qualify as clinical psychologists first, and then specialize in forensic-related work. Many of them belong to professional organizations and governing bodies such as the American Psychological Association, the American Psychology-Law Society, the American Association for Correctional Psychology, the American Academy of Forensic Psychology, and the American Board of Forensic Psychology. To understand the role of psychologists within prisons, it is useful to first consider psychology and its historical development ...