May 1, 2009

Forensic Psychology Unbound

That's the clever title of a new website launched by a group of forensic psychologists promoting an online, open-access journal. The first issue of the Journal of Forensic Psychology is in the works, and editor Greg DeClue is encouraging interested professionals to submit manuscripts. The journal will be free and accessible to anyone with Internet access. This stands in stark contrast to most professional journals, which have long been critiqued for being extremely costly and inaccessible to professionals without a subscription or members of the public who don’t have access through academic databases.

The new journal features several of the same editorial board members as a more narrowly focused effort at an open-access forensic psychology journal, the Journal of Sexual Offender Civil Commitment, launched by psychologist Joseph Plaud in 2005. Board member R.K. McKinzey sponsors a third online, open-access forensic psychology site, Web Psych Empiricist, with a neuropsychology emphasis. The breadth of interest areas of editorial board members bodes well for the new journal.

Sponsoring the new project is Professional Resource Press, which was founded by psychologist Larry Ritt a few decades ago, and is a continuing education sponsor approved by the American Psychological Association.

You can help the project succeed by submitting manuscripts, taking the APA-approved Continuing Education offerings, or simply donating money -- online, of course. The home page sports a piggy bank which is not yet open for business.