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New university course t train real-life Crackers.

Byline: CHRIS BROWN

CRACKER was an exciting and dark TV series about a heavy-drinking, chain-smoking forensic psychologist.

Now a unique course has been set up to develop a new generation of real-life forensic psychologists in Liverpool.

When qualified, they will treat criminals to work out the best ways of understanding and controlling their behaviour.

However, unlike other similar courses, it has been developed between Liverpool Hope University College and the Prisons and Probation Service.

Students will be able to go to prisons as part of their course and help there as well as learn about criminal behaviour.

The MSc has taken two years to develop and will see staff from the prison working with the students.

And, for their dissertation, students will have the option of working in Liverpool Prison.

Professor Graham Towl, head of Psychology, Prisons and Probation Services for England and Wales, said: ``I very much welcome the development of this new MSc in Applied Forensic Psychology.

``The unique public sector partnership between Liverpool Hope, Probation Service and the Prison Service which underpins the course is an excellent example of effective collaborative working.

``The benefits for prisons and probation are twofold. Firstly, applied psychologist professionals in the North West will benefit from contributing to the course as tutors.

``Second, students will benefit from the exposure to what will clearly be an academically rigorous and relevant course to inform their practice and contribute towards them working toward chartership with the British Psychological Society. ''

Part of the work of the year-long course will involve carrying out research for the Prisons and Probation Service.

Professor Gerald Pillay, rector and chief executive of Liverpool Hope, said: ``This programme is setting new standards for the way in which we develop high-quality relevant postgraduate courses.

``We recognise the importance of working with other agencies to identify their needs and to ensure the courses we offer are right for them.

``I must congratulate my academic colleagues as well as colleagues in the Prison and Probation Service for their vision and determination in delivering another first for Liverpool Hope University College''
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jan 24, 2005
Words:345
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