The Division of Psychiatry and Law program in Forensic psychiatry is a subspecialty within psychiatry that deals with the interface of mental health issues and the law. This includes matters of civil, criminal, and administrative law as well as evaluation and specialized treatment of individuals involved with the legal system at a variety of levels including those incarcerated in jails, prisons, and forensic psychiatric hospitals. This specialty is formally recognized by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, which offers added qualifications and board certification in this field.
This fellowship program provides training in civil, criminal, clinical, consultative and correctional forensic psychiatry to forensic faculty, residents, and medical students. The goal of the Division of Psychiatry and Law is to enable psychiatrists to understand and effectively interface with the legal system and, via the various programs described below, to provide ethical, quality, and timely professional expert services in a wide variety of civil and criminal forensic evaluations.
The forensic teaching staff consists of forensic psychiatrists, psychiatrists, forensic psychologists, psychologists, and attorneys, including law enforcement personnel. Teaching activities involve case consultation, peer review, and didactic seminars. The psychiatry resident seminars cover topics in civil and criminal law as well as forensic psychiatry that are pertinent to the practicing forensic psychiatrist.
The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences features several nationally recognized research programs. Forensic psychiatry fellows have opportunities for supervised participation in funded research projects.
- Dunbar Laboratory for Research on Memory and Fear
- Center for Psychiatric Genetics
- Genetics and Neurobiology of Stress and Depression
- Laboratory of Translational Neurobiology
- Mental Health Services and Policy Program
- Neuroimaging & Applied Computational Anatomy Lab
- Feinberg Clinical Neuroscience Research Institution
- Center for Drug Discovery and Chemical Biology
- Center for Sleep and Circadian Biology
- Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center
- Northwestern University Institute for Neuroscience
Stephen Dinwiddie, M.D.
Director, Division of Forensic Psychiatry