PhD in Psychology, Public Policy and Law

Explore the psychology of violence to make systems more just and society safer.

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PhD in Psychology, Public Policy and Law Overview


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This unique doctorate program is designed for professionals interested in making private and public sector environments safer, stronger, and more just. In the program you’ll join with peers and thought leaders in exploring ways to transform existing systems to make them more equitable, impactful, and humane, resulting in dramatically improved communities, societies and the world. 

The program prepares you to intersect with current systems in different contexts to better understand and mitigate violence and conflict. By strengthening your research skills and expanding your understanding, you’ll be empowered to engage in thoughtful leadership within civil, criminal, and public policy frameworks to improve outcomes within local, national, or global settings.

As a participant in the program, you’ll become part of an elite cadre of professional practitioners who are educated and trained in applying science to contemporary issues. You’ll learn current violence prevention and intervention practices in forensics, the criminal justice system, law enforcement, security and social engagement to more effectively keep individuals and societies safe. Fellow students include public and private health and safety professionals who have earned a Master’s degree and who want to enhance their skills and advance their careers or consultancies.

With timely and relevant concentrations, the program prepares you to work at the forefront of today’s law enforcement, security, and forensics challenges. Among other concentrations, you may opt to specialize in forensic linguistics, using the study of language to investigate violence. By analyzing word choices, discourse, and subtle changes in language that correlate with an increase in violence, you’ll participate in building a valuable corpus of material for further forensic discovery.

Concentrations include: 

  • Forensic Linguistics
  • Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies
  • Disaster Planning and Management
  • Criminal Behavior
  • Practical Situational Awareness 
     

As a graduate you’ll be qualified to pursue a meaningful and impactful career in law enforcement, as a security executive or consultant, as a forensic program developer and evaluator, in forensic linguistics or trial consulting, in risk management, as a civil investigator, mitigation specialist, and as an influencer of public policy. 

 

SEE Course Info 


Faculty and Admissions

Get the information you need about the PhD in Psychology, Public Policy, and Law degree, see the latest admission requirements for the program, and start your Alliant experience.

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Degree Highlights

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Strong Partnerships

The California School of Forensic Studies is a proud sponsor of the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), of Forensic Linguistic Investigations (FLI), and the California Peace Officers Association (CPOA). 

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Important and Timely

The program provides an opportunity for you to take a deep dive into the psychology, sociology, and politics of violence and the laws and policies related to it in a variety of contexts such as criminal justice, social services, security, and media.

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Online Education

The PhD in Psychology, Public Policy, and Law program is offered online with two intensive weekend residencies and incorporates technology to create a rich learning environment outside of the classroom.

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Degree Information


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Faculty Spotlight: Diana Concannon

Diana M. Concannon, PsyD, is Associate Provost for Strategic Initiatives and Partnerships at Alliant International University, Dean of the California School of Forensic Psychology, and Director of the APA-Accredited California Psychology Internship Consortium. To each of these positions, she brings more than 25 years of executive leadership experience to support the development and delivery of quality, practical, and accessible education in various mental health disciplines.

She is a forensic psychologist, licensed to practice in California, New York, Utah, and Washington D.C., a Professional Certified Investigator by the American Society for Industrial Security, a Rape Escape Instructor, and a Loyola Law School-trained Mediator.

She is the author of Kidnapping: An Investigator’s Guide to Profiling, Neurocriminology: Forensic and Legal Applications, Public Policy Implications, and numerous articles on threat assessment, risk management and crisis psychology.

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diana concannon
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Frequently Asked Questions

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Program Campus Locations


The PhD in Psychology, Public Policy and Law is offered online with two weekend residencies. Explore our programs below.

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Why Alliant

At Alliant, our mission is to prepare students for professional careers of service and leadership and promote the discovery and application of knowledge to improve the lives of people in diverse cultures and communities around the world. Our Vision is an inclusive world empowered by Alliant alumni.

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Why CSFS

The California School of Forensic Studies is dedicated to graduating rigorously educated and trained professionals who impact society, public opinion, and policy by applying science in the service of preventing, investigating, and mitigating conflict and violence.

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What will your impact be?

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