Nelson Higher Education

Higher Education

Forensic Psychology, 2nd Edition

  • Stephen Porter
  • Lawrence S. Wrightsman
  • ISBN-10: 0176509364
  • ISBN-13: 9780176509361
  • 0 Pages | Paperback
  • Previous Editions: 2006
  • COPYRIGHT: 2014 Published
Request a Copy for Review


About the Product

Written by two of the leading scholars in the field, Forensic Psychology, Second Canadian Edition, introduces students and the public at large to the practice of forensic psychology by showing how psychologists aid the legal system by serving as expert witnesses, criminal profilers, and trial consultants for jury selection and child custody hearings. It presents the roles and responsibilities of forensic psychologists, addresses both the opportunities and temptations inherent in those roles, and explores the ethical issues facing practicing forensic psychologists. The authors provide students with an accurate and candid picture of the field in Canada and internationally today. Along with an increased amount of Canadian criminal case material and new Canadian Researcher Profile boxes, the second Canadian edition has been extensively revised to expand on recent changes in the Canadian judicial system, and to include a much broader coverage of eyewitness testimony, investigative/police psychology, and the psychology, risk assessment, and treatment of sexual offenders and psychopaths.


  • The authors adopt a broad definition of forensic psychology as any psychological research or application with relevance to the law.

  • Given Canada’s reputation as a world leader in forensic psychology, the authors give major coverage to the types of research being conducted in Canadian universities and the types of applications occurring in our legal system (e.g., expert witnesses, correctional psychology).

  • Addresses all major areas of forensic psychology, exploring ethical responsibilities, police psychology, eyewitness testimony, deception detection, criminal behaviour and profiling, forensic interviewing, jury selection and decision-making, victim issues, criminal responsibility and competency to stand trial, and the future of forensic psychology.

  • Contains a high level of scholarship combined with a consistent reliance on science and empirical evidence.

  • InfoTrac® is a powerful online learning resource consisting of thousands of full-text articles from hundreds of journals and periodicals. By doing a simple keyword search, students quickly generate a list of relevant full-text articles from thousands of possibilities. InfoTrac®’s continually updated collection of articles can be useful for doing reading and writing assignments that reach beyond the pages of this text. Ask your Nelson Sales & Editorial Representative how to bundle InfoTrac® with your textbook!

About the Author

Stephen Porter

Dr. Stephen Porter received his Ph.D. in forensic psychology at UBC and currently is a researcher and consultant in the area of psychology and law. After working as a prison psychologist, Dr. Porter spent a decade as a psychology professor at Dalhousie University where he initiated the first undergraduate forensic psychology specialization in Canada. In 2009, he transferred to the UBC campus in Kelowna where he assumed a position as a professor of psychology and the codirector of the Centre for the Advancement of Psychological Science & Law (CAPSL). Dr. Porter has published numerous scholarly articles on psychopathy and violent/predatory behaviour, deceptive communication and interviewing, and forensic aspects of memory, with funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). As a registered forensic psychologist, Dr. Porter is consulted by Canadian courts and has been qualified as an expert witness in various areas, including “dangerousness and risk for violence” and “memory and the factors involved in credibility assessments.” He has been consulted by police in serious crime investigations and provides training to law enforcement, mental health professional groups, government agencies, journalists, trial judges, and other adjudicators. Most recently, he has become part of the RCMP crisis negotiation team (e.g., hostage negotiations) in the Okanagan region.

Lawrence S. Wrightsman

Lawrence S. Wrightsman (Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1959) was professor of psychology at the University of Kansas, Lawrence. Wrightsman authored or edited ten other books relevant to the legal system, including Psychology and the Legal System (4th edition, coauthored with Michael T. Nietzel and William H. Fortune), The American Jury on Trial (coauthored with Saul M. Kassin), and Judicial Decision Making: Is Psychology Relevant? He was invited to contribute the entry on the law and psychology for the recently published Encyclopedia of Psychology, sponsored by the American Psychological Association and published by Oxford University Press. His research topics included jury selection procedures, reactions to police interrogations, and the impact of judicial instructions. He also served as a trial consultant and testified as an expert witness. Wrightsman is a former president of both the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues and the Society of Personality and Social Psychology. In 1998 he was the recipient of a Distinguished Career Award from the American Psychology-Law Society. This award has been made on only six occasions in the 30-year history of the organization; the preceding awardee was U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun.

Table of Contents

About the Authors

Chapter 1: An Analysis of the Field of Forensic Psychology
Chapter 2: Roles and Responsibilities of Forensic Psychologists
Chapter 3: The Police: Selection, Training, and Evaluation
Chapter 4: Criminal Profiling
Chapter 5: Deception Detection in the Legal System
Chapter 6: Remembering Crime
Chapter 7: Police Interrogations and Confessions
Chapter 8: The Psychology of the Jury
Chapter 9: Criminal Responsibility and Competency to Stand Trial
Chapter 10: Intimate Partner Violence, Homicide and Stalking
Chapter 11: Sex Offenders
Chapter 12: The Psychology of Child and Adult Sexual Assault Victims
Chapter 13: Psychopathy: History, Assessment, Etiology, and Its Association with Violence
Chapter 14: The Role of Psychology in Sentencing, Parole, and Dangerous Offender Hearings in Canada
Chapter 15: The Promising Future of Forensic Psychology in Canada

Name Index
Subject Index

New to this edition

  • Offers expanded chapters on Psychopathy (Ch. 13), Intimate Partner Violence, Homicide and Stalking (Ch. 10), Sex Offenders (Ch. 11), and The Role of Psychology in Sentencing, Parole, and Dangerous Offender Hearings in Canada (Ch. 14), reflecting the most current research, legislation, and social trends.
  • Provides a much broader coverage of two critical topics, eyewitness testimony and sexual offenders, in order to properly cover the entire spectrum of research in these areas and to adequately reflect their prominence in the field of forensic psychology.
  • Reflects the substantial developments in the Canadian legal system (such as the omnibus crime bill Bill C-10, covered in Chapter 1 and then discussed throughout the book when relevant). More general information about the Canadian legal system is integrated throughout the book when possible.
  • Includes more Canadian cases in general and has also updated old or outdated case examples, such as the Kimberly Proctor case from Vancouver Island (detailed in Chapter 13) and a number of Canadian NCRMD (insanity defense) cases like those of Vince Li, Jeffrey Arenburg, Allan Schoenborn, and Dr. Guy Turcotte (Chapter 9).
  • Canadian Researcher Profiles have been added to each chapter of the textbook. These profiles provide students with examples of Canadian professors (and potential mentors) working and researching in the field of forensic psychology and include information about the researcher's schooling, research interests, and their personal life, giving students an opportunity to put a face to the name of the researchers that they learn so much about. Profiles include young and upcoming researchers such as Dr. Leanne ten Brinke (a recently graduated researcher who is internationally renowned for her work in the field of deception detection, found in Chapter 4) and more established and well known researchers such as Kevin Douglas (an associate professor at Simon Fraser University whose research focuses on risk assessment and management).


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the Main title.
Please see Main title page for new to this edition information.

Instructor Supplements

Instructor's Manual for Forensic Psychology, 2ce  (ISBN-10: 0176627960 | ISBN-13: 9780176627966)

The Instructor's Resources for Forensic Psychology include a Test Bank, NETA Presentation PowerPoints and Day One Slides.