Forensic Psychology Conference
Request for competence evaluation is an important component of forensic work. Indeed, forensic professionals are often called upon to perform evaluations on competences covering a variety of situations, from competence to stand trial to termination of parental rights, guardianship/conservatorship, Miranda waiver, consent to sexual intercourse, competence to be sentenced or to be executed, etc. Each of these competence evaluations involves important knowledge of the law and standards of practice to allow professionals to provide the best services possible for their clients. Recognizing the importance of gaining relevant training to perform these evaluations, the St. John’s University Office of Postgraduate Professional Development Programs decided to dedicate its second forensic conference to a careful discussion of these competencies.
For this purpose, we are fortunate to be joined by a group of recognized forensic experts with extensive knowledge in these different competences to guide our discussion. The Moot Court in our Law School will serve as the setting for this event. Specific issues related to rendering expert testimony in regard to one of the competences will also be elucidated and demonstrated through a simulation experience in the afternoon on “competence to stand trial” in front of a seating judge. Forensic psychologists, psychiatrists, and attorneys representing different parties will also be involved in the demonstration.
A follow-up (postmortem) panel discussion composed of these different individuals will engage in an active discussion with the audience. Those attending this conference are expected not only to gain knowledge about the different competences but to become familiar with what is involved in court appearance as expert witness from an examination of the forensic report to the court testimony of the findings.