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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Graduates

The MSc and PhD in Forensic Psychology combine disciplinary and specialized study in Forensic Psychology, study in research methods and statistics, and applied learning experiences to prepare students to work in a variety of settings.

Graduate students in these programs will have opportunities to conduct cutting-edge research on diverse topics related to the application of psychology to the justice system, such as:

  • antisocial personality and psychopathy
  • domestic violence
  • eyewitness identification
  • geographic profiling
  • investigative interviewing
  • juvenile offenders
  • lie detection
  • sex offenders
  • wrongful conviction

The Master of Science (MSc) in Forensic Psychology combines disciplinary and specialized study in the field, study in research methods and statistics, and applied to learning experiences to prepare students to work in a variety of settings. Specifically, the program will prepare students for careers related to the following:

  • Administration in provincial and federal programs.
  • Advertising and marketing.
  • Behavioural science and statistical research in government organizations.
  • Design and evaluation of community programs.
  • Research and/or teaching in college and university settings.
  • Research and practice in behavioural science crime units within law enforcement.
  • Research in mental health institutions, hospital settings, justice-related institutes, correctional facilities, the pharmaceutical industry, and the educational entertainment industry.
  • Trial consulting.

Admission

Prospective students must hold a four-year undergraduate degree or equivalent in Psychology or a related field (e.g. Neuroscience, Computer Science, Biology, Criminology) at a recognized institution. Students with both Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees are encouraged to apply.

For more information, please visit Forensic Psychology (master's program)

The PhD in Forensic Psychology combines disciplinary and specialized study in Forensic Psychology, study in research methods and statistics, and applied learning experiences to prepare students to work in a variety of settings. Specifically, the program will prepare students for careers related to the following:

  • Administration in provincial and federal programs.
  • Advertising and marketing.
  • Behavioural science and statistical research in government organizations.
  • Design and evaluation of community programs.
  • Research and/or teaching in college and university settings.
  • Research and practice in behavioural science crime units within law enforcement.
  • Research in mental health institutions, hospital settings, justice-related institutes, correctional facilities, the pharmaceutical industry and educational entertainment industry.
  • Trial consulting.

The program will also allow professionals (e.g. law enforcement officials) to advance in their current fields.

Each year, a small number of undergraduate students may be admitted directly into the PhD program without a master’s degree. This direct-entry option is for undergraduate students with exceptional academic performance throughout their bachelor’s degree.

For more information, please visit Forensic Psychology (doctoral program).

Core Psychology faculty

Faculty

Research supervision area

Accepting students

Contact

Kimberley Clow, PhD
  • wrongful conviction
  • stereotypes and prejudice
  • perceptions of gender
kimberley.clow@ontariotechu.ca 
Brian Cutler, PhD
  • false accusations
  • false confessions
  • mistaken eyewitness identification
brian.cutler@ontariotechu.ca 
Joseph Eastwood, PhD
  • improving investigative interviewing
  • generation and assessment of alibis
  • comprehension of youth waiver forms
joseph.eastwood@ontariotechu.ca 
Karla Emeno, PhD
  • geographic profiling
  • crime mapping
  • police stress and recruitment
karla.emeno@ontariotechu.ca 
Leigh Harkins, PhD
  • group aggression
  • perceptions of sexual aggression
  • sex offender treatment effectiveness
leigh.harkins@ontariotechu.ca 
Lindsay Malloy, PhD
  • Disclosure of children's negative or traumatic experiences
  • Children's memory
  • Juvenile victims
  • Witnesses and suspects
lindsay.malloy@ontariotechu.ca 
Matthew Shane, PhD
  • emotional/cognitive processes in antisocial personalities
  • psychopathic behaviour
  • neural systems underlying fear, guilt, shame, empathy, perspective-taking
  • error monitoring and experiential learning
  • neuromodulation
matthew.shane@ontariotechu.ca 
Shannon Vettor, PhD
  • Offender profiling
  • Sexual aggression
  • Sexual victimization
shannon.vettor@ontariotechuoit.ca 

Core cross-appointed faculty

Faculty

Research supervision areas

Accepting students

Contact

Shahid Alvi, PhD
  • crime and social exclusion
  • violence against women
  • youth crime
  • cyberbullying
  • theoretical criminology
shahid.alvi@ontariotechu.ca 
Carla Cesaroni, PhD
  • corrections/penology
  • youth justice
carla.cesaroni@ontariotechu.ca
Sean Forrester, PhD
  • New drug targets to eradicate tropical diseases
sean.forrester@ontariotechu.ca 

Associate faculty

Faculty

Research Supervision Areas

Accepting Students

Contact

Ron Hinch, PhD
  • criminological theory
  • food crime
  • green criminology
  • policing violent crime
  • serial murder
Steven Downing, PhD
  • ethnography
  • game studies
  • mixed qualitative methods
  • sociological theories of crime
steven.downing@ontariotechu.ca
Karla Dhungana Sainju, PhD
  • corrections and sentencing
  • offender monitoring technologies
  • traditional and cyber bullying
  • gender and crime
  • public policy
karla.dhungana-sainju@ontariotechu.ca
Helene LeBlanc, PhD
  • forensic entomology
Krystal Martin, PhD
  • risk assessment
  • treatment of offenders
  • management of maladaptive patient behaviours
krystal.martin@ontariotechu.ca 
Thomas McMorrow, PhD
  • socio-legal studies
  • alternative dispute resolution
  • legal theory
thomas.mcmorrow@ontariotechu.ca 
Timothy McTiernan, PhD
  • alternative dispute resolution and restorative justice processes
  • governance in contemporary Canadian Indigenous Treaties
  • social psychological processes underpinning prejudice and discrimination
  • bias and evidence as vectors in formulating public policy
timothy.mctiernan@ontariotechu.ca 
Natalie Oman, PhD
  • aboriginal law and politics
  • global governance
  • human rights
  • law and society
  • philosophy of law
  • political philosophy
  • public international law
natalie.oman@ontariotechu.ca 
Michele Peterson-Badali, PhD
  • assessment
  • youth justice
  • evaluation of programming for Indigenous youth
Andrea Slane, PhD
  • cyberbullying
  • cybercrime
  • Internet law
  • online sexual exploitation of children and youth
andrea.slane@ontariotechu.ca 
Arshia Zaidi, PhD
  • intimate partner violence in immigrant families
  • quantitative/qualitative methodologies
  • race, gender, sexuality, family and culture
  • socio-cultural issues of immigration
arshia.zaidi@ontariotechu.ca 
 

Femi Carrington

Femi is a master’s student under the supervision of Dr. Matthew Shane. His current research interests involve the relationship between psychopathy, empathy, and aggression. Additionally, he is interested in using non-invasive neuromodulation techniques to increase empathic abilities such as emotional contagion. His master’s thesis aims to examine whether individual differences in psychopathic personality traits moderate the effectiveness of these neuromodulation interventions.


 
Karli Cruikshank

Karli Cruikshank completed her undergrad at Acadia University in Nova Scotia where she received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a minor in Sociology. Her research interests include wrongful conviction and false confessions. Karli hopes to complete her PhD at Ontario Tech University before pursuing a career in research working with local police departments. 

 

 

 


Cassandre Dion Larivière

Cassandre received her Bachelor of Arts, Honours in Applied Psychology from Bishop’s University. She is currently pursuing a master's degree in Forensic Psychology at Ontario Tech University. Under the supervision of Dr. Joseph Eastwood, Cassandre’s research examines rapport-building in the context of virtual interviews in the hopes of helping inform the virtual investigative interviewing processes.

 


Ana Espinosa

Ana Espinosa is an international student from Mexico. She recently completed her BSc in Clinical Psychology and Health at Tecnológico de Monterrey where she minored in Research and Innovation. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Forensic Psychology under the supervision of Dr. Lindsay Malloy. She has gained a keen interest in children who have survived maltreatment and sexual abuse. Based on these interests, she is hoping to complete her master’s thesis by studying the jury’s perceptions of immigrant children’s testimonies. Ana wishes to pursue a PhD once she has completed her masters and she plans on staying in academia and pursuing a career as a professor.


 
Daniella Filoso

Daniella Filoso completed her undergraduate degree in Psychology with a concentration in Forensic Psychology at Carleton University in Ottawa. She was working with the Canada Border Services Agency before starting her master's degree in Forensic Psychology at Ontario Tech University. Her research interests include memory and how eyewitness accuracy can be improved as well as investigative interviewing. Under the supervision of Dr. Lindsay Malloy, Daniella's research will focus on how eyewitness accuracy and interviewing can be applied to children and youth with a particular emphasis on how having siblings can influence lie-telling. Daniella's goal is to complete her PhD and work in an academic setting or move into a research-based career in the field of public safety. 


 
Rebecca Fisico

Rebecca Fisico completed her BA in Forensic Psychology at Ontario Tech University and is now pursuing her master's degree in Forensic Psychology. For her MSc, she wants to research technology-facilitated intimate partner violence with a focus on dating applications. Rebecca hopes to pursue her PhD and to one-day influence policy, particularly in regards to sexual offending. 

 

 

 


Alexandra Grave

Alexandra Grave completed her BA (Hons) in Forensic Psychology with a minor in Criminology at Ontario Tech University and is now pursuing her MSc in Forensic Psychology. For her undergraduate thesis, she researched the potential of exposure to exonerees to combat stigma toward wrongfully convicted individuals under the supervision of Dr. Kimberley Clow. Her research interests for her master’s thesis under the supervision of Dr. Karla Emeno broadly include police use of force on public perceptions of police. 


 
Siobhan Green

Siobhan Green completed her undergraduate degree in Forensic Psychology at Carleton University. While at Carleton, she completed a Practicum with the RCMP where she worked with different departments to collaborate on different projects and help with operational policy. Her research interests include policing and police perceptions as well as geographical profiling. For her master's thesis, she is hoping to work with the DRPS with a focus on police perceptions after the building of new infrastructures and effect on crime rates. Following her grad studies, Siobhan wishes to continue working with the RCMP and work with other police forces as a consultant.


 
Ryan Lahay

Ryan Lahay completed an Honours Bachelor of Arts and Science in Criminology and a BA in Psychology at Lakehead University where he studied the use of body-worn cameras with Dr. Alana Saulnier. For his MSc, he will be researching whether cognitive load and physiological arousal differ across language proficiencies and veracity condition, and the effect of an interpreter on those differences with Dr. Amy Leach. Ryan is interested in pursuing his PhD or moving into a career following the completion of his master’s.

 

 


Jingyuan (Sophie) Li

Sophie completed her undergraduate degree in Psychology at York University. She is pursuing her master's degree in Forensic Psychology under the supervision of Dr. Kimberley Clow. She is interested in the consequences of wrongful convictions, factors that influence people's emotions and attitudes toward exonerees, and the relationship between people's empathy and their perception of those who have been wrongly convicted. 

 

 


Katrina Villeneuve

Katrina Villeneuve is a Forensic Psychology MSc student under the supervision of Dr. Amy Leach. She holds a BA in Forensic Psychology and a minor in Criminology and Justice. Katrina’s current research focuses on lie detection in non-native English speakers—more specifically, how rapport may mediate the relationship between language proficiency and detail (i.e. a cue to deception). She has additional experience as a volunteer research assistant at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences.

Korri Bickle

Korri is a PhD student in Forensic Psychology, supervised by Dr. Carla Cesaroni. She earned her MA in Early Childhood Studies at Ryerson University in 2010 and her MSc in Psychology at Trent University in 2015. Korri’s research interests include youth justice and specifically the role correctional officers play in a youth's justice experience.


Carisa Collins

Carisa Collins is in her fourth year of the PhD program under the supervision of Dr. Leigh Harkins. She holds a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Psychology, from Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador, and a Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Her research experience has been varied, with manuscripts published in two different fields, but her current research interests include sexual offenders and paraphilias. Her dissertation research is largely focused on non-offending pedophiles and the challenges and issues they may face. Her work is adding to a new and growing body of literature supporting the understanding that pedophile and child molester are not synonymous.

Carisa has additional research experience volunteering at the Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences where she has partaken in research projects examining protective factors for mentally-ill offenders and the influence of the subjective experience of restrictiveness on treatment outcomes. 


Christina Connors

Christina is a third-year Forensic Psychology PhD student. From Halifax, Nova Scotia, she completed both her Master of Science and Bachelor of Arts at Saint Mary's University. Under the supervision of Dr. Marc Patry, her undergraduate honours thesis focused on Canadians’ legal rights upon arrest. In her master's thesis, she empirically examined jury decision making in a Mr. Big case. Now working under the supervision of Dr. Joseph Eastwood in the ALERT lab, Christina's PhD work is focused on improving Canadian cautions and knowledge of interrogation rights.


Laleh Dadgardoust

Laleh Dadgardoust is a PhD student in the Forensic Psychology program at Ontario Tech University. The main focus of her research is improving understanding of rape proclivity as a potential risk factor for sexual offending. Her other research interests include risk assessment and factors influencing treatment management of different subtypes of sex offenders.

Laleh has contributed to different research projects aiming at understanding and improving treatment provided to sex offenders in Canada and has presented her research at international conferences. She also has more than 10 years of experience providing group facilitation, advocacy, and public education to individuals fleeing abuse.​


William Denomme

William is a PhD student in Dr. Matthew Shane's Clinical and Affective Neuroscience Laboratory for Discovery and Innovation (CANdiLAB), studying neurocognitive dysfunctions in substance use disorders, and how they may correlate with other mental disorders, including personality disorders (e.g. psychopathy) and psychotic and mood disorders. You can follow his research via his ResearchGate profile.


Elizabeth Elliot

Elizabeth Elliott is a third-year PhD student supervised by Dr. Amy Leach. She received her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Psychology from Carleton University and a Master of Arts in Criminology from Ontario Tech University. Currently, she is examining elements of lie detection decisions and the components that make up deceptive accounts. In the past, she has also examined the association between language proficiency and lie detection. Her other interests include wrongful confession and psychopathy.


Cristina Ferrara

Cristina is currently in the third year of her PhD. Her research area is broadly police, but more specifically to do with the influence of social media on public perceptions of police. Other research areas include police stress, police body-worn cameras, and social role theory. 

Supervisor: Karla Emeno, PhD.


Lindsay Groat

Lindsay is currently a fourth-year direct-entry PhD student studying several implicit motivations which may drive individuals to empathize with others. This work is done both behaviourally and through neuroimaging methods, whereby she is assessing neural activity in regions underlying empathy when individuals are empathizing. Her work takes place within normative populations but is also particularly driven by work with antisocial populations, specifically those with psychopathy.


Annmarie Khairalla

Annmarie is a PhD student in the Forensic Psychology program. Under the supervision of Dr. Brian Cutler, Annmarie's research focuses on the effects of body-worn cameras on memory. Her research interests are plea decision-making, eyewitness memory, and body-worn cameras.


Jeffrey Kaplan

Jeff Kaplan is a teaching assistant, research assistant, and PhD student affiliated with the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities at Ontario Tech University. He holds a BA (Hons) degree with a double major in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Winnipeg, and a master's degree in Forensic Psychology from Ontario Tech University. He is a member of the American Psychological Association, Canadian Psychological Association, and American Psychology-Law Society.

Under the supervision of Dr. Brian Cutler, Jeff's PhD research is in the area of assessing the psychology behind interrogation techniques and coercion. His research experience includes not only studies conducted in an academic context, but also public
sector evaluations and private sector market research. Past clients include the Health Canada, the Correctional Services of Canada, the Manitoba Provincial Government, AAA/CAA, MTS (now Bell Telecom) and many others. His areas of research have been highly varied, as he often focuses on synthesizing research from disparate areas of the social sciences. This includes research projects involving eyewitness identification accuracy, offender rehabilitation, evolutionary psychology, methods of supported employment for individuals with mental illnesses, and the effects and correlates of workplace bullying and harassment.

Jeff Kaplan provides literature reviews, survey design, and data analysis services for public and private sector organizations on a contract basis.


Lillian Rodriguez-Steen

Lillian completed her BA in Psychology with a focus in Developmental Forensic Psychology at the University of Toledo in May of 2016. She is currently in her second year of our Forensic Psychology doctoral program working under the supervision of Dr. Lindsay Malloy. The focus of her research is on the child witness and the ground rule portion of investigative interviews with child witnesses. Specifically, Lillian is currently investigating how and when children request clarification within interview settings and how these requests can be bolstered when appropriate. She hopes to use her research to inform policy makers and all those who question or work with children (e.g. researchers, teachers, doctors) on best-practice guidelines for interviewing children.


Danielle Rumschik

Danielle is a first year PhD student from the U.S. currently involved in research on eyewitness memory, face identification, and face matching. Specifically, investigating the ability of individuals to make identifications from surveillance, as well as trained professional’s (e.g. border services agents) ability to make face matching decisions and the factors that affect accuracy in those situations.


Isabelle Simard

Isabelle received her BSc and her MSc in psychology from the University of Montreal. Her Master’s work investigated the neural correlations of reasoning in autism. She is currently in the Forensic Psychology PhD program and working on establishing neural markers of offending to better understand and predict offending behaviour.

 


Mark Snow

Mark is a first-year Forensic Psychology PhD student at Ontario Tech University. He received his BSc (Hons) in Psychology from Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland in 2016, and his MSc in Forensic Psychology from Ontario Tech University in 2018. He is currently working in the Applied Law Enforcement and Training (ALERT) Laboratory under the supervision of Dr. Joseph Eastwood.

Broadly, his research examines both the actual and perceived quality of witness testimony and police interviewing procedures. Much of his research has been focused specifically on the psychology of alibi assessment. His doctoral research will explore the role of emotional memory within the context of investigative interviewing.


Lyndsay Woolridge

Lyndsay is a third-year PhD student in the Forensic Psychology program working under the supervision of Dr. Amy Leach. She completed her master’s degree in Linguistics at York University and received her BA (Hons) in Linguistics and Psychology from Queen’s University.​ Her primary research area focuses on deception detection in non-native English speakers and the implications of observer biases when making veracity judgments in legal settings. As a secondary focus, Lyndsay has also conducted several studies related to deception and attributions of arousal. Currently, she is investigating the impact of interpreter use on deception detection during courtroom examinations.

2020

Renee Bencic, MSc. Supervisor: Dr. Karla Emeno; Committee member: Dr. Leigh Harkins

Sara Caro Arroyave, MSc. Supervisor: Dr. Lindsay; Committee member: Dr. Karla Emeno

Quintan Crough, MSc, Supervisor:  Dr. Joe Eastwood; Committee member: Dr. Karla Emeno

Kristina Shatokhina, MSc, Supervisor: Dr. Leigh Harkins

Rangina Wardak, MSc. Supervisor: Dr. Karla Emeno; Committee member: Dr. Brian Cutler