Singapore University of Social Sciences

Working with the Courts and Special Offender Populations

Working with the Courts and Special Offender Populations (PSY522)


PSY522 Working with the Courts and Special Offender Populations focuses on working with court-related issues and with special offender populations of youth and sex offenders. Youth offenders form a specialised group and require developmentally appropriate assessments and interventions. Students will learn approaches to working with youth offenders and to working with sex offenders. The assessment, rehabilitation and management of these offenders will be covered. Students will learn how psychology can be applied in the court setting through the provision of psychological reports, acting as specialist consultants and as an expert witness in legal proceedings.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY JULY


  • Youth offending in the Singapore context
  • Youth gangs
  • Working with youth offenders in custodial settings
  • Working with youth offenders with special needs
  • Psychology of sex offending
  • Assessment of sexual violence
  • Intervention and management of sex offenders
  • Youth sex offending
  • Psychology and the courts
  • Report writing for the court and decision making
  • Psychologists as specialist consultants
  • Psychologists as expert witnesses

Learning Outcome

  • Evaluate the issues and challenges in working with different offender populations.
  • Appraise the differentiated approaches in working with youth and sex offenders.
  • Critique the requirements and standards required for providing court reports and professional opinion as an expert witness.
  • Demonstrate basic skills in providing interventions for sex offenders.
  • Draw upon psychological principles in working with youth offenders in a multi-stakeholder environment.
  • Compare the different approaches to risk assessment, drawing upon multiple sources of information in preparing a Court report.
  • Analyse the skills needed to explain and defend a Court report or a professional opinion as an expert witness in Court.
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