Practitioner's bookshelf — Forensic psychology, part III

Forensic psychology volumes that cover assessment of competencies, malingering and other special issues in forensic settings

By Marketing and Business Development staff

April 26, 2012—In this recurring feature, we bring you new releases, best-of-class reference texts and resources you can recommend to your clients. Titles and descriptions come from both the APA Practice Organization’s Amazon Associates Store and APA Books. This is the third article in our series on forensic psychology, with volumes that cover assessment of competencies, malingering and other special issues in forensic settings. What other books on forensic psychology have you found helpful and informative? Email us and let us know.

Forensic Psychology Resources

Assessment of Legal Competencies

Evaluating Competencies: Forensic Assessments and Instruments
By Thomas Grisso
This book offers a conceptual model for understanding the nature of legal competencies. The model is interpreted to assist mental health professionals in designing and performing assessments for legal competencies defined in criminal and civil law, and to guide research that will improve the practice of evaluations for legal competencies. A special feature is the book's evaluative review of specialized forensic assessment instruments for each of several legal competencies. Three-fourths of the 37 instruments reviewed in this second edition are new.

Evaluation of Competence to Stand Trial
By Patricia Zapf and Ronald Roesch
Forensic mental health assessment (FMHA) has grown into a specialization informed by research and professional guidelines. This series presents up-to-date information on the most important and frequently conducted forms of FMHA. Each volume contains a thorough discussion of the relevant legal and psychological concepts, followed by a step-by-step description of the assessment process from preparing for the evaluation to writing the report and testifying in court. In making recommendations for best practice, authors consider empirical support, legal relevance and consistency with ethical and professional standards. These volumes offer invaluable guidance for anyone involved in conducting or using forensic evaluations.

Competence in the Law: From Legal Theory to Clinical Application 
By Michael L. Perlin, Pamela R. Champine, Henry A. Dlugacz and Mary Connell
Written by experts in the fields of mental disability law and forensic psychology, Competence in the Law prepares mental health professionals to understand the law, consider questions of civil and criminal competence and knowledgeably counsel lawyers and judges in cases in which mental competency issues are germane.

The first single-volume resource of its kind, Competence in the Law examines the landmark cases that have set precedents in this area; presents in-depth discussion of criminal competencies, such as competency to stand trial, plead guilty or waive counsel; explores questions of competency in civil law matters, such as custody and estates; considers the relationship between competency and the institutionalization of persons with mental disabilities; and identifies commonalities between court decisions in discrete areas of the law.

Adjudicative Competence: The MacArthur Studies 
By Norman G. Poythress Jr., Richard J. Bonnie, John Monahan, Randy Otto and Steven K. Hoge
Adjudicative competence remains an important topic of research and practice in psychology and law. In the five sections of "Adjudicative Competence: The MacArthur Studies," the authors present not only a summary of the research of the MacArthur studies on competence but also an examination of the underlying theoretical work of Professor Richard Bonnie. It is the first publication to encapsulate the scope and significance of both the studies themselves and Bonnie's contributions. Given its breadth and scope, this book will be an important volume for forensic mental health professionals and lawyers.

Evaluation for Guardianship
By Eric Y. Drogin and Curtis L. Barrett
This book considers the legal, ethical and assessment issues that arise when forensic mental health professionals are asked to evaluate the capacity of adults to make independent decisions about the management of their personal and financial affairs. As our population ages, the competence of those who are elderly and mentally infirm may be challenged more and more frequently, and this book will be an valuable resource for those involved in assessing that competence.

Assessment of Malingering and Deception

Clinical Assessment of Malingering and Deception, Third Edition
By Richard Rogers
Widely regarded as the standard reference in the field, this book provides essential tools for understanding and assessing malingering and other response styles in forensic and clinical contexts. An integrating theme is the systematic application of detection strategies as conceptually grounded, empirically validated methods that bridge different measures and populations. Special topics include considerations in working with children and youth. From leading practitioners and researchers, the volume reviews the state of the science and offers best-practice guidelines for maximizing the accuracy of psychological and psychiatric evaluations.

Detection of Malingering during Head Injury Litigation
Edited by Cecil R. Reynolds and Arthur MacNeill Horton, Jr.
Increased public awareness of traumatic brain injuries has fueled a number of significant developments: on the one hand, more funding and more research related to these injuries and their resulting deficits; on the other, the possibility of higher stakes in personal injury suits — and more reasons for individuals to feign injury. Expanding both the conceptual and clinical knowledge base on the subject, the second edition of "Detection of Malingering during Head Injury Litigation" offers the latest detection tools and techniques for veteran and novice alike.

This practical revision demonstrates how to combine clinical expertise, carefully-gathered data, and the use of actuarial models as well as common sense in making sound evaluations and reducing ambiguous results. The book navigates the reader through the many caveats that come with the job, beginning with the scenario that an individual may be malingering despite having an actual brain injury.

Among the updated features: specific chapters on malingering on the Halstead-Reitan, Luria-Nebraska and MMPI-2; a framework for distinguishing genuine from factitious posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in head injury cases; detailed information regarding performance on the Word Memory Test (WMT), Medical Symptom Validity Test (MSVT), and Nonverbal Medical Symptom Validity Test (NV-MSVT) by children with developmental disabilities; guidelines for explaining symptom validity testing to the trier of fact; and new chapters on mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) and on malingering of PTSD symptoms in the context of TBI litigation.

Neuropsychology of Malingering Casebook
Edited by Joel E. Morgan and Jerry J. Sweet
Clinical neuropsychologists frequently evaluate individuals within a forensic context, and therefore must address questions regarding the possible presence of reduced effort, response bias and/or malingering. This volume offers a wide range of instructive real-world case examples involving the complex differential diagnosis where symptom exaggeration and/or malingering cloud the picture. Written by expert forensic neuropsychologists, the scenarios described provide informed, empirically-based and scientifically-derived opinions on the topic. Issues related to malingering, such as response bias and insufficient effort, are discussed thoroughly with regard to a large number of clinical conditions and assessment instruments. Test data and nontest information are considered and integrated by the numerous experts.

Forensic Neuropsychology

Handbook of Forensic Neuropsychology, Second Edition
Edited by Arthur MacNeill Horton, Jr. and Lawrence C. Hartlage
This book serves as an updated authoritative contemporary reference work intended for use by forensic neuropsychologists, psychiatrists, neurologists, neurosurgeons, pediatricians, attorneys, judges, law students, police officers, special educators and clinical and school psychologists, among other professionals. This book discusses the foundations of forensic neuropsychology, ethical/legal issues, practice issues and special areas and populations. Key topics discussed include the principles of brain structure and function, history of clinical neuropsychology, neuropsychology of intelligence, normative and scaling issues, and symptom validity testing and neuroimaging. Special areas and populations will include disability and fitness for duty evaluations, aging and dementia, children and adolescents, autism spectrum disorders, substance abuse and neurotoxicology. A concluding section focuses on the future of forensic neuropsychology.

Forensic Neuropsychology: A Scientific Approach
Edited by Glenn J. Larrabee
With increasing frequency neuropsychologists are being asked to serve as experts in court cases where judgments must be made as to the cause of and prognosis for brain diseases and injuries. This book describes the application of neuropsychology to legal issues in both the civil and criminal courts. It emphasizes a scientific basis of neuropsychology. All of the contributors are recognized as scientist-clinicians. The chapters cover common forensic issues such as appropriate scientific reasoning, the assessment of malingering, productive attorney-neuropsychologist interactions and ethics.

Also, covered are the determination of damages in personal injury litigation, including pediatric brain injury, mild, moderate and severe traumatic brain injury in adults (with an introduction to life care planning); neurotoxic injury; and forensic assessment of medically unexplained symptoms. Civil competencies in elderly persons with dementia are addressed in a separate chapter, and two chapters deal with the assessment of competency and responsibility in criminal forensic neuropsychology.

Special Issues and Populations

Evaluating Sexual Harassment: Psychological, Social, and Legal Considerations in Forensic Examinations
By William E. Foote and Jane Goodman-Delahunty
This volume provides psychologists with essential information for conducting an evidence-based forensic consultation. The authors acquaint readers with the clinical and social scientific literature on sexual harassment, and apply these findings to issues that psychologists must consider in preparing ethically sound and well-substantiated forensic reports and testimony. The book integrates existing research with current case law on sexual harassment. It offers a method for conducting a comprehensive evaluation of a plaintiff, as well as a science-based approach to the two major issues in sexual harassment disputes: causation and credibility. Of particular interest to readers will be two illustrative case reports and the chapter on alternate dispute resolution.

Criminal Profiling: Developing an Effective Science and Practice
By Scotia J. Hicks and Bruce D. Sales
This book aims to transform criminal profiling into a credible science and practice that will reliably aid law enforcement investigation. The authors critique the state of criminal profiling today and find the practice of criminal profiling to be an art more than an established science, lacking clear links among crime scene evidence and offender motives, personality, and behavior. With no firm scientific basis for their judgments, profilers differ in their conclusions and recommendations, rendering profiling problematic as a law enforcement tool. This book tackles this problem squarely, exploring in detail how a science of profiling may be constructed and tested. The comprehensive new approach offered here builds on existing practice and research and calls for empirical information that can lead to a sound new science of criminal profiling.

Sex Offending: Causal Theories to Inform Research, Prevention, and Treatment
By Jill D. Stinson, Bruce D. Sales, and Judith V. Becker
In this book, the authors review and critique existing theories and supporting literature on why adolescent and adult males commit such acts as child molestation, voyeurism, indecent exposure, rape and other violent offenses against adults and children. Chapters explore a range of theories of etiology, including biological, cognitive, behavioral, social learning, personality/psychodynamic and evolutionary theories, as well as theories that incorporate two or more of these viewpoints. The authors then present their original integrative theory of sex offending and the ways it could influence prevention and treatment. Scientists across psychology sub-disciplines and mental health professionals treating sex offenders will benefit from this book, as will law professionals working with this population.

Treating Adult and Juvenile Offenders With Special Needs
Edited by José B. Ashford, Bruce D. Sales, and William H. Reid
Who are offenders with special needs and what kind of treatment do they need? Offering a unique multi-disciplinary look at mental health services in the correctional field, this book comprehensively examines the field, exploring the history, rights, standards and treatment in mental health corrections. Loaded with practical information, the book covers what works in the treatment of offenders with special needs, identifies concerns regarding release planning and aftercare, and faces the realities associated with the logistics of prison systems and community settings.

By emphasizing the biological, psychological, and social needs of offenders, this book promotes the development of rehabilitative models for this population based on firm scientific information—not on prejudice or misinformation. This groundbreaking work is an essential resource for those involved with the corrections field, from administrators, attorneys, caseworkers and criminologists to psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and sociologists.

Mental Disability Law, Evidence and Testimony: A Comprehensive Reference Manual for Lawyers, Judges and Mental Disability Professionals
By John Parry and Eric Y. Drogin
This new book written by American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law Director, John Parry, JD and forensic psychologist, Eric Y. Drogin, JD, PhD, has been formatted and written to guide lawyers, judges, law students and forensic and other mental disability professionals through the maze of civil and criminal laws, standards and evidentiary pitfalls, and forensic practices that characterize this area of the law. It summarizes what empirical evidence exists to support or raise concerns about these legal standards and forensic practices when they are introduced in the courtroom.

Evaluation for Personal Injury Claims
By Andrew W. Kane and Joel A. Dvoskin
This book addresses the assessment of personal injury claims, and explores the history and importance of this process, the legal standards and the procedure for applying this assessment in court. Established empirical foundations from the behavioral, social, and medical sciences are then presented. Finally, the book provides a detailed "how-to" for practitioners, including information on data collection, interpretation, report writing and expert testimony.

Forensic Mental Health Assessments in Death Penalty Cases
By David DeMatteo, Daniel C. Murrie, Natalie M. Anumba and Michael E. Keesler
"Forensic Mental Health Assessments in Death Penalty Cases" provides an essential road map to the field for students and practitioners. The book integrates the most up-to-date research with best practice recommendations, yielding a solid foundation of information related to capital punishment, death penalty litigation and the role of forensic mental health professionals in death penalty cases. Vivid descriptions of influential court cases, a discussion of ethical considerations, guidance on conducting various types of forensic mental health assessments and sample forensic reports illustrating best practices make up this important work. Current case law is covered in detail, alongside an important discussion of what remains unknown and directions for future research. This book is essential reading for students and professionals in the fields of mental health, criminal justice and law, as well as for forensic practitioners who may not be familiar with the special requirements of death penalty cases. It is also an important resource for attorneys who work with forensic mental health professionals.

Conducting Insanity Evaluations, Second Edition
By Richard Rogers and Daniel W. Shuman
Insanity evaluations represent the most challenging and complex evaluations in forensic psychology and psychiatry. Mental health and legal professionals involved in insanity cases need a solid foundation in current concepts, legal standards and clinical methods. This need is heightened by the substantial legal and clinical changes that have occurred in the field during the past decade. This text from two leading authorities brings forensic professionals up-to-date on key issues surrounding insanity evaluations. It delineates explicit, research-based guidelines for interview-based assessments, psychological testing and other specialized procedures, and forensic reports and testimony. The volume explores how insanity is conceptualized under the law and differentiated from other standards of criminal responsibility. A range of clinical measures and techniques are examined, with special attention to such relevant phenomena as malingering and amnesia. Included in the appendices are invaluable databases on 413 defendants evaluated for criminal responsibility and 6,479 defendants found not guilty by reason of insanity. For clinicians, the volume provides the knowledge and skills needed to conduct ethical, legally defensible insanity evaluations and to present their findings effectively.

Whores of the Court: The Fraud of Psychiatric Testimony and the Rape of American Justice
By Margaret A. Hagen
This book provides a scathing exposé of fraud in the use of "expert" psychological testimony in the courtroom. From the high-profile murder trials of the Menendez brothers and Jeffrey Dahmer, to personal injury, product liability and child custody cases, lawyers across the country have increasingly turned to "expert" testimony from psychologists, psychiatrists and social workers to influence the decisions of judges and juries. Psychologist Margaret Hagen details the very real danger of this booming business. In every state, a child can be taken away from a parent on the strength of five minutes of "neutral" testimony from a social worker. A criminal suspect's freedom or incarceration can depend on a superficial psychological examination performed by an incompetent, overworked or, at worst, paid-off psychologist. Parole hearings hinge on the testimony of similarly incomplete or fraudulent evaluations, allowing "rehabilitated" violent criminals back onto the street to commit more heinous crimes, with no accountability for the reviewing "expert." Unmasking some psycho-legal expertise as a total fraud, Dr. Hagen instructs readers to protect themselves and their families from being victimized in the courtroom.

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