March 3, 2008

New draft of forensic psychology ethics guidelines

At 17 years old, the ethics guidelines for forensic psychologists are ancient considering all of the changes in the field since 1991. A revision to these Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists has been in the works for several years now. The previous draft by the revisions committee of the American Psychology-Law Society (Division 41 of the American Psychological Association) came out two years ago, in January of 2006. Finally, the long-awaited third official draft has been released and is open for public comments. The latest changes to the guidelines will also be the topic of a presentation at the AL-LS annual convention in Jacksonville later this week. For those of you who are attending the convention (I won’t be there this year), the presentation is on Saturday at 4:45 p.m.

The Specialty Guidelines are "aspirational," meaning they recommend but don't mandate appropriate professional behavior and conduct for forensic psychologists. They are meant to be used in conjunction with applicable laws, rules and regulations, and ethics codes such as that of the American Psychological Association.

Public comments on the latest draft can be emailed to or mailed to Randy Otto, Ph.D., 13301 North 30th Street, Tampa, FL 33612. When submitting comments please identify the specific section you are referencing (e.g., 7.01, 8.03.03) and provide recommended alternative language when appropriate.

The third draft is available here. The previous (2006) draft is here; the original guidelines are here.

1 comment:

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