Several caveats must be noted before reviewing this literature, however. Similarly, in Sternberg and Wagner's volume Practical Intelligence, several different types of competence are referenced in the subject index, including cognitive, social, intellectual, and interpersonal. Applying a cognitive psychology perspective to the examination of competence to provide informed consent therefore requires vigilance regarding the concepts actually being discussed.
The literature on everyday problem solving has some important parallels to the development of the concept of competence to provide informed consent. Willis and Schaie list the following five aspects of everyday problem solving: relevant mental abilities and skills; domain-specific knowledge; understanding of personal circumstances and of interpersonal context; attitudes, beliefs, and preferences; and integration of these dimensions. An important feature of this type of problem solving is recursiveness, that is, solutions or decisions may be arrived at in a nonlinear manner Willis, Two of cognitive psychology's everyday problem-solving dimensions are notably absent from forensic conceptualizations, however.
Within the forensic framework, the role of attitudes, beliefs, and preferences is not addressed, nor is the potential for recursiveness in the decision process. Arguably, legal requirements necessitate a single response on a single occasion, and the importance of attitudes, beliefs, and preferences to the decision is potentially minimized by this single-time focus: each may change over time, but if a one-time decision is the focus of the law, then at most the law will be concerned with the influence of each on the present decision.
A single-time focus also obviates a temporally recursive perspective. Among the core issues addressed by cognitive psychology are memory and attention, both of which are relevant to a consideration of competence. Not surprisingly, findings from cognitive psychology are immediately applicable to competence concerns.
Advances in conceptualizations of competence have led to attempts to assess competence empirically, since assessment follows from, and in some cases feeds back to, conceptualization.
Process Losses Due to Group Conformity Pressures: Groupthink
Assessment of competence is considered next. Julian D. Christine A. The professional work of traumatic stress researchers and clinicians may lead them to be involved with persons who represent the legal system or are engaged in legal matters in a number of ways. The American Board of Forensic Psychology www. Forensic psychology is the application of the science and profession of psychology to questions and issues relating to law and the legal system. Today, forensic refers to the application of scientific principles and practices to the adversary process where specially knowledgeable scientists play a role.
Forensic mental health specialists conduct research and clinical activities in or related to courts of law and civil and criminal justice programs and facilities such as CPS agencies, adult jails and prisons, and juvenile justice detention and probation agencies. Civil law also involves requests to a court to provide legally mandated protection to a person such as child custody cases or to society such as commitment cases in which a person is alleged to be a danger to self or others and to therefore require placement in a secure facility such as a psychiatric institution. People can apply for asylum—that is, permission to remain in a country other than their country of citizenship for their safety and protection—as a means of immigrating to most countries internationally.
Asylum may be sought in the United States either through affirmative asylum or defensive asylum. A BCIS asylum officer conducts an interview to determine whether the request will be granted. In defensive asylum, the individual already has been apprehended by law enforcement e. Article 3 of the United Nations Convention Against Torture states that no asylum seeker can be returned home if there is a credible threat of torture, but the BCIS asylum officers in danger of torture or persecution.
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Students or protesters who engage in social or political activism face persecution such as violent assaults, imprisonment, and torture in some countries. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual or transgender individuals are persecuted in a number of countries, especially those in which religions that ban other than heterosexual activity is an integral part of the government. Children and families who are fleeing community violence perpetrated by criminal organizations or groups that may or may not be covertly government sanctioned also may be eligible for asylum.
Ideal Types of Law from the Perspective of Psychological Typology
Women or girls may be subject to severe punishment that constitutes persecution including execution for having a baby out of wedlock or for having been the victim of rape. They also may be targeted simply based upon their gender by organized criminal or political groups for sexual or physical violence, and a recent ruling in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals found that as such they constitute a social group eligible for asylum due to being subject to persecution, even if the group is not obviously visible or formally organized. Women who have been victimized by domestic or intimate partner violence have been less successful in seeking asylum because they have not been viewed as subject to public persecution; however, in a case still under review by the Immigration Court in Tacoma, the judge released a Honduran woman from detention after finding that her claim of persecution due to battering by her husband had merit because government protections against such abuse in that country are insufficient.
The evaluations are done to provide an objective assessment of the extent of exposure to traumatic violence and the resultant harm caused to the asylum seeker by PTSD both currently and should the individual be forced to return to a country where they allege they will face additional persecution or persistent reminders of past traumatic persecution. A redacted composite example of the PTSD asylum evaluations illustrates how careful application of the PTSD criteria can provide immigration officers or courts with a basis for determining the psychological harm that has been done or could be done to asylum seekers.
I [clinical assessor], under penalty of perjury, affirm that the following information is true and correct to the best of my ability: 1. The current evaluation focused on the psychological impact on Mr. A of being detained, interrogated, and tortured by the CAR National Intelligence Agency for his participation in an opposition political party. A arrived on time to his appointment accompanied by a friend.
The assessment, with only Mr. A present, was conducted in English. A presented as appropriately dressed and well groomed. A was alert and oriented. His thought processes were logical and coherent, and his thought content was appropriate. He was engaged throughout the evaluation, and maintained appropriate eye contact.
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Initially, Mr. A presented as detached, describing factual details of his life in the CAR and detailing his political views.
Judicial Decision Making Is Psychology Relevant Perspectives In Law Psychology:
He then slowly became more forthcoming about the psychological impact of his detentions, interrogations, and torture. A was noticeably anxious when discussing the possibility of returning to the CAR and tearful when reflecting on his separation from his wife and child after leaving his country. A reported that, because of his participation in the United Democratic Party, he was repeatedly detained, interrogated, and tortured by the CAR National Intelligence Agency, starting in A described physical and psychological torture during his first detention in detail, which included being severely beaten with a baton, humiliated and degraded, and continually threatened with death.
Subsequently, Mr. A reportedly lived in constant fear of further detention and torture for his political activities. He reported being detained and tortured, for days or weeks on an approximately yearly basis until He reported that with each episode, his fear and hypervigilance increased, which is consistent with scientific research on cumulative trauma exposure.
A explained that the intensity of the physical and psychological violence escalated during his final detention in , further heightening his fear for his safety and hypervigilance. A reported that throughout these years, his home was periodically raided and ransacked, and he and his family were under surveillance for extended periods of time. As such, Mr. Furthermore, Mr.
A explained that because of the beatings and abuse during his detentions, his finger is scarred; he suffers from migraines and tinnitus; and he has neck, shoulder and back pain, among other physical ailments. He also stated that the torture that he experienced in the CAR has exacerbated the physical complications of his polio. He noted, for instance, increased swelling and pain in his legs and ankles following his final detention, during which he was beaten, electrocuted, buried waist deep, and malnourished. A reported feeling intense fear during and following his detentions, interrogations, and torture, which involved repeated incidents of serious physical harm and threatened death.
He described intrusive reexperiencing of his traumas, avoidance of reminders of his traumatic experiences, negative alterations in his cognitions and mood i. According to Mr. A, his symptoms of posttraumatic stress have caused a significant amount of distress.
A reported that he first experienced posttraumatic stress symptoms after his initial detention, and his distress persisted throughout subsequent years, increasing immediately following each of his detentions. This timeline suggests that Mr. A reported current persistent reexperiencing of his traumatic experiences, which include intrusive thoughts, nightmares, and dissociative reactions with triggers of his trauma. For instance, he described nightmares in which he is kidnapped and tortured while his family looks on, is unable to aid him, and reacts in horror.
He also described dissociative reactions during which he smells one of his cells, as if detained in the CAR and not safely in the United States. Based on his report, Mr. A has expended great time and energy avoiding and planning to avoid reminders of his traumas. He described plans to surgically remove scars from his torture in order to lessen his daily triggers. He also stated that he has consistently engaged in a stream of activity through his years in the CAR and months in the United States in order to avoid the reminders of his traumatic exposures.
Because fewer distractions are available, his symptoms of reexperiencing are reportedly more severe during the nighttime.
A reported that intrusive thoughts and nightmares significantly disturb his sleep. He reportedly requires 3—4 hours to fall asleep and is awakened on a weekly basis by nightmares involving being tortured. A stated that he has experienced pervasive fear and sadness since his initial detention in To cope with this intense distress, Mr.