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Could You Be A Forensic Psychiatrist?

forensic psychiatrist

Forensic psychiatrists work with criminal justice agencies, the police, probation services, courts and prisons.

Forensic psychiatry involves assessing and treating offenders with mental disorders who may present a risk to the public.

What do forensic psychiatrists do?

  • Help patients to understand and reduce their risk.
  • help patients to understand their illness and the impact of their action on victims
  • help patients with anger control and stress management
  • address problems of substance misuse
  • devise relapse prevention plans
  • support patients with rehabilitation back into society
  • support carers, family and friends.
  • Liaise with general psychiatry services and criminal justice agencies.
  • Provide expert opinion to courts

How to become a forensic psychiatrist?

You will need to study medicine initially. On completion of your medical degree you would undertake two-year’s of foundation training in hospitals and general practice, then a further 3 years of specialist training in psychiatry, after which you would choose to specialise in forensic psychiatry (alternatives would be learning disabilities psychiatry or old age psychiatry) which would involve a further three years of specialist training after which you would be eligible to apply for a consultant post.

Essential study if you want to be a forensic psychiatrist

You must study, as a minimum, chemistry and either maths or physics if you want to study medicine.  This is a minimum however.  If you want to keep all medical schools open to you rather than limit your choices to a few then you should study A-levels in chemistry, biology and either maths or physics.

What about GCSEs?

Some schools and colleges will only accept you onto science A-levels if you have studied triple science at GCSE level because the double award does not have sufficient depth of content.

So, if a career as a forensic psychiatrist appeals to you, make sure you make the correct subject choices at A-level and get ready for lots of hard work.

About Lynette Daly

Lynette is the publishing editor of Moving On magazine. Moving On is devoted to helping young people make good choices for their future – education, qualifications and careers. Moving On really wants to motivate you! Our articles cover a range of topics to inspire and give ideas. Our magazines are delivered free to all schools, colleges and sixth forms in England and is also available online.

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