Skip to content

Certificate in Forensic Behavioral Health: Curriculum

Curriculum Details

15 Total Credits Required

The online Certificate in Forensic Behavioral Health requires 15 credit hours of coursework. You’ll gain best practices for delivering services to clients with behavioral health issues. You’ll also study the roles of human services professionals, learn how to apply empirical research in the field, associate risk factors with key clinical features in clients, and prepare to make ethical decisions and properly document practices in the field of human services.

This program is not a clinical/counseling licensed program. The forensic psychology certificate online can be completed in nine months, although your transfer credits and general education coursework will vary the time it takes you to finish.

Required Courses


This course explores the roles and responsibilities that human service professionals perform in delivering services to clients with behavioral health issues in criminal justice and forensic behavioral health settings. This initial course will provide an interdisciplinary view of human services across numerous settings, including social work, case management, child protective services, domestic violence and homeless shelters, substance use and behavioral health treatment centers, first responders, courts, and community supervision. Students will (a) become acquainted with evidence-based non-clinical assessment and intervention techniques, (b) match common community-based resources to client needs, and (c) enhance communication, problem solving, and advocacy skills to employ on behalf of clients.

This course will provide an in-depth look at the relationship between family violence, child maltreatment, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and various forms of trauma and their impacts on global functioning. It will explore risk factors and warning signs associated with family violence and other forms of maltreatment. Students will analyze the direct and indirect impacts of violence and abuse on the victims and other family members. Students will identify victim-offender typologies and explore the impact of substance use and behavioral health in cases involving family violence. Current intervention strategies and available community resources for those affected by family violence and other traumatic events will be included.

This course will provide students with the skills to critically evaluate research on issues in the field of human services. Students will learn how to apply empirical research to their decision-making with clients, including the dynamics of problem solving and the development of creative and efficient solutions. Students will build quantitative and qualitative analysis skills in the application and critique of research methodology (i.e., design, data collection, analysis, and interpretation) in the field of human services.

This course will examine the most common behavioral health conditions observed in human services populations, and their assessment and treatment. Topics include Serious and Persistent Mental Illness (SPMI) conditions, personality disorders, substance-use disorders, and childhood disorders. Students will learn the risk factors and key clinical features associated with each disorder and explore the impact of substance use, traumatic brain injuries, and pre-natal substance exposure on mental health symptoms. Evidence-based intervention and treatment strategies deemed most effective with human services and forensic behavioral health populations will be included.

This course focuses on the ethical and legal considerations that human service professionals encounter in their daily job duties. Topics include ethical and legal issues such as confidentiality, mandated reporting, consent and release of information, duty to warn, domestic violence, orders for protection, and harassment, especially how such issues come into play for clients with histories of self-harm, family violence, and other forms of violence. Students will learn the use of ethical decision-making frameworks and discuss the dangers faced while working in human service settings and ways to minimize potential liability. Students will explore the potential roles of human service professionals as witnesses in court cases. Students will be equipped to make ethical decisions and properly document practices in the field of human services.

Request More Information

By filling out the form, you’ll:

  • Gain access to a dedicated enrollment counselor who is ready to answer all of your questions.
  • Take one more step towards achieving your career goals.

Fill out the form to receive more information!