M.A. in Forensic Psychology in D.C.

Program Description

A master’s degree in Forensic Psychology will open doors to a variety of professional opportunities that apply the art and science of psychology to the understanding and functioning of legal and related fields.

Students obtain a solid understanding of a range of issues, such as juvenile delinquency, criminal behavior, child custody, domestic violence, substance abuse, trauma, victimology, insanity and competency to stand trial, sexual offenders, violence and risk assessment, and expert testimony. 

Students at the D.C. Campus program have the opportunity to take advantage of the school’s proximity to key agencies important to study in this field—organizations such as the FBI, NCIS, Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital, the Supreme Court, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the Virginia Department of Corrections. Through a range of community partnerships, faculty members integrate the resources of such agencies through site visits, courtroom observations, field research, internships, and distinguished speakers. Students also benefit from a variety of applied learning experiences rarely available at other schools and are prepared to practice forensic psychology in an ethical, academically informed, and research-based manner. There are two tracks to this program which are offered on the Washington, DC Campus:

Professional Counselor Licensure Track

Non-Licensure Track

Non-licensure track is designed for students who are not interested in the pursuing professional counselor licensure.


Forensic Psychology



The M.A. in Forensic Psychology is designed in accordance with licensure requirements in the District of Columbia. For licensure in other jurisdictions, please consult the Department Chair.

Total Credits

60 (licensure track); 37 (non-licensure track)

Fieldwork Requirements

700 hours over 9-12 months
  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • A course in Psychology, with a grade earned of C or better
  • A course in Statistics, with a grade earned of C or better
  • A course in Research Methods, with a grade earned of C or better
  • N/A
Admission Requirements

GRE Requirements

Sample Courses

Forensic Mediation and Dispute Resolution

Focuses on emerging issues in mediation and mediation techniques for managing conflict. Dispute resolution techniques are also a strong focus of this course.

Hostage Negotiations

Examines strategies for negotiating a critical incident, understanding and managing the critical incident, and communication techniques, as well as understanding perpetrators, stress and stress management, and the Stockholm syndrome within a hostage situation. In addition, students gain an understanding of crisis negotiation, debriefing, hostage-taker demands, and the effects of time on a situation.

Evaluation and Treatment of the Juvenile Offender

Addresses the classification, assessment, and treatment of the juvenile offender. Various factors contributing to juvenile delinquency and empirically-based treatment approaches are discussed. Legal and institutional responses to juvenile crime are analyzed, and the role of the forensic clinician in the juvenile justice system is discussed utilizing case material. Case lectures and discussions, case examples, and video presentations are used to illustrate key concepts.

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