Wrightsman's Psychology and the Legal System,
10th Edition

Kirk Heilbrun, Edith Greene, Amy Bradfield Douglass

ISBN-13: 9780357797464
Copyright 2024 | Published
496 pages | List Price: USD $300.95

Does trauma spark brazen acts? Do eyewitnesses offer accurate reports? Can jurors distinguish truth from lies? Can experts predict mass shootings? What best explains biasing influences on police? You find the answers to these and other thought-provoking questions in the best-selling WRIGHTMAN'S PSYCHOLOGY AND THE LEGAL SYSTEM, 10E. This edition provides an eye-opening overview of psychology's contributions to the 2022 legal system and the important roles of trained psychologists within the legal system. Real cases, such as Kyle Rittenhouse and Ahmaud Arbery, illustrate the flesh and blood of today’s psychological issues -- from the motivations of offenders to discretion in sentencing. The latest content explores social and racial injustice, current crime statistics and the impact of COVID-19 on crime. New content also examines the psychology behind the latest crime-countering technology as you examine psychology methods and research at work in today’s legal system.


1. Psychology and the Law: Choices and Roles.
2. The Legal System: Issues, Structure, and Players.
3. Psychology of Crime.
4. Psychology of Police.
5. Eyewitnesses to Crimes and Accidents.
6. Victims of Crime, Violence, and Adversity.
7. Evaluating Criminal Suspects.
8. Traditional Steps in Criminal Prosecution and Civil Litigation: Arrest, Bail, Plea Bargains, Settlements, and Trials.
9. Alternatives to Traditional Criminal Prosecution and Civil Litigation.
10. Assessment in Criminal and Juvenile Cases.
11. Assessment in Civil Cases.
12. Preparing for Trials.
13. Jurors and Juries.
14. Punishment and Sentencing.
15. Adult and Juvenile Corrections.

  • Kirk Heilbrun

    Kirk Heilbrun is currently a professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Drexel University. He received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology in 1980 from the University of Texas at Austin. He completed his postdoctoral fellowship training from 1981 to 1982 in psychology and criminal justice at Florida State University. Dr. Heilbrun’s current research focuses on juvenile and adult offenders, legal decision making and forensic evaluation associated with such decision making, as well as reentry and the diversion of individuals with behavioral health problems from standard prosecution. He is the author of numerous articles on forensic assessment, violence risk assessment and risk communication and the diversion and treatment of justice-involved individuals. In addition to serving as co-author for the 6th through 10th editions of PSYCHOLOGY AND THE LEGAL SYSTEM, he has published twelve other books on topics including forensic mental health assessment, juvenile delinquency, violence risk assessment, the Sequential Intercept Model, evaluating juvenile transfer, forensic ethics and university-behavioral health system collaboration. Dr. Heilbrun’s practice interests also center around forensic assessment, and he directs a clinic within the department in this area. In addition, he leads a reentry project for the assessment and treatment of individuals returning to the community from federal prison, those involved in a federal mental health court and individuals who have been exonerated from criminal convictions. He has previously served as president of both the American Psychology-Law Psychology/APA Division 41 and the American Board of Forensic Psychology. Dr. Heilbrun’s enjoys biking into work and playing padel (Google it).

  • Edith Greene

    Edie Greene is emerita professor of psychology at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, where she served on the faculty for 35 years. She earned her Ph.D. in cognitive psychology and law at the University of Washington in 1983. She has been a fellow in law and psychology at Harvard Law School and a visiting scholar at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand). She has obtained several federally funded grants to support her research on legal decision making, eyewitness memory and psycholegal aspects of aging. Dr. Greene received a college-wide award for outstanding research and creative works, a university-wide award for excellence in research and the Chancellor’s Award for Distinguished Faculty. She has been invited to lecture at the National Judicial College and at continuing legal education programs nationwide. She consults with lawyers on various trial-related issues including jury selection, trial strategies and jury decisions, and has, on numerous occasions, testified as an expert witness on jury behavior and eyewitness memory. In addition to serving as coauthor of the 5th through 10th editions of PSYCHOLOGY AND THE LEGAL SYSTEM, Dr. Greene is author of a number of articles, columns and book chapters on jury decision making, trial reforms, witness memory, elder law issues and teaching in psychology and law. She is also co-signer on several amicus briefs presented to the U.S. Supreme Court and is co-author of an additional three books. She has served as president of the American Psychology-Law Society/APA Division 41 and received their award for outstanding teaching and mentoring. Dr. Greene lives in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains where she hikes, bikes and skis.

  • Amy Bradfield Douglass

    Amy Bradfield Douglass is professor of psychology at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, where she has also served as department chair and division chair for social sciences. For six years Dr. Douglass served as an associate editor for Law & Human Behavior, the flagship journal for the American Psychology - Law Society. She is currently the secretary/treasurer for the Society for Applied Research in Memory & Cognition. Dr. Douglass conducts research on eyewitness memory and identification decisions. Her work has been supported by the National Science Foundation and Australian Research Council and featured in multiple court decisions. Most recently, she was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to conduct research in Japan. Dr. Douglass lives in Maine with her husband, twin daughters and very spoiled black Labrador.

  • UPDATED CONTENT EXPLORES SOCIAL AND RACIAL INJUSTICE. This edition carefully considers topics related to social and racial justice. New discussions examine bias against citizens and review the influences of police and associated racial bias. New content analyzes broad statistics as well as highly-publicized individual cases that will interest students.

  • THE LATEST CRIME STATISTICS REFLECT CHANGES IN CRIMINAL OFFENSES AS A RESULT OF COVID-19. This edition demonstrates how pandemic restrictions have impacted criminal offenses. Students examine highly publicized horrific crimes, such as Buffalo and Uvalde, as well as less publicized but still frightening crimes, such as carjacking and domestic assaults. New content examines crimes within the larger context of a nearly two decade decrease in offenses and questions what is driving crime and whether or not these increases are stable.

  • NEW CONTENT SCRUTINIZES THE USE OF NEW TECHNOLGY IN COUNTERING CRIME. New material addresses the issues that arise with new technologies such as the use of artificial intelligence to detect deception in criminal suspects and to develop representative lists of prospective jurors. This edition also examines body-worn cameras to aid in police work and virtual reality technologies to enhance jury decision making as well as juror misconduct stemming from access to online information during trials.

  • THE ACCLAIMED AUTHOR TEAM BRINGS A DIVERSITY OF EXPERIENCE FOR A BALANCED APPROACH. This edition’s coauthors offer the diverse perspectives of a clinical psychologist, a cognitive psychologist and a social psychologist. These professionals apply their years of experience working with the legal system to ensure a well-developed and balanced approach that engages and prepares students to understand psychological principles at work in the legal system today.

  • UP-TO-DATE RESEARCH KEEPS ALL CONTENT CURRENT AND AUTHORITATIVE. This text remains the best seller in its market because of the authors’ comprehensive coverage, well developed writing style and use of interesting case studies to illustrate core principles. The authors also provide unwavering attention to relevant legal dilemmas.

  • "ORIENTING QUESTIONS" AT THE BEGINNING OF EACH CHAPTER GUIDE STUDENTS' READING. These engaging questions function as learning objectives, directing student attention to key issues within the chapter. End-of-chapter summaries reflect back on these "Orienting Questions" and reinforce concepts.

  • APPENDICES PROVIDE IMPORTANT BACKGROUND DOCUMENTS FOR AN ALL-IN-ONE RESOURCE. Appendices include the Constitutional amendments, the Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct and the Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychology. This content provides students with a well-rounded look at the psychology of law while consolidating all of the information students need in one text.

  • A FULL CHAPTER ON THE PSYCHOLOGY OF CORRECTIONS (CH. 15) FOCUSES ON POST-ADJUDICATION ISSUES. This chapter contains separate sections for juveniles and adult corrections. Timely content also discusses traditional institutional interventions and describes recent community interventions that are of particular interest. In addition, this chapter discusses the role of psychologists in jails and prisons and includes a section on the psychological consequences of long-term incarceration.

  • THE POPULAR "THE CASE OF" FEATURE HIGHLIGHTS REAL CASES FROM RECENT HEADLINES. These intriguing, current cases capture student interest and highlight the relevance of important legal concepts for your students.

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.

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