Psychology of violence


(PLEASE FOLLOW MY TEACHER’s INSTRUCTION CAREFULLY, The news article should not be included in the essay, you can just give me the link and I will print it by myself)

You need to find a news item of interest that has a lot written about it. It must be relatively current (last five years) and highly related to violence and the psychology of violence. It needs to be an “event” that happened that has a perpetrator who can be identified (could be a group perpetrator) and must be an act of violence that is motivated by something other than being mentally ill.

You will reprint and attach some article that discusses your topic (there might be many articles available –choose one) and then do some research as if you were a forensic psychologist trying to explain WHY that behavior happened.

You will use valid and recent research, (not just your opinions) and write a four or five page article explaining WHY this behavior occurs (ie – why do dictators engage in acts of terrorism and killing, why did that domestic violence individual kill his wife and kids, why did those teenagers beat up that little kid, why did the police officers shoot that unarmed and non-violent suspect, why did that crowd go crazy and kill that guy, why did the anti-whatever group blow up that building, why were people threatening violence over a small flag incident, why do people in India seem to feel that raping random women is a good idea, why did that hate group attack and hurt that person that represents the thing they hate, why did that kid go crazy and shoot everyone at school, why did that pilot take the plane down and kill 150 people, etc. etc.).

You won’t actually be able to tell us why the specific incident occurred (unless there’s already a lot of info on it written by psychologists) so you will need to hypothesize and look up articles or book chapters that discuss the TYPE of violence you are discussing, then extrapolate from there. If you choose a “sensitive” subject, please be politically correct with it and whatever topic you choose, don’t rant and don’t get into your personal views.

Maintain a professional tone throughout. CITE your sources – all sources, even the original news article, and add a reference page. Please write in your own words and don’t “cut and paste” or paraphrase/copy other people’s words and work. This paper will probably be four or five pages long (not counting the original article) – if you are working in a group, we expect to see MORE from you, not the minimum. PLEASE USE AT LEAST THREE DIFFERENT SOURCES IN YOUR PAPER in addition to the original source for the article. The goal is to find a balanced viewpoint to discuss the reasons for this type of behavior. Remember to stay professional and cite all sources and don’t skimp – papers that skimp or just skim the surface or wander way off task or don’t take the assignment seriously will be graded poorly.


Remember though to cite your sources and add a reference page. “In Paragraph” citations are also very good when summarizing other people’s work – as in “Jones and Smith found in their 2010 study that…….”) – helps us to see that you are using other people’s work and summarizing it for us…

Again, and even more importantly with this paper, DON’T PLAGIARIZE! Cite your sources, don’t use quotes without quotation marks, don’t paraphrase and call it your own words, don’t write a paper that is mostly quotes either!!!! If you are not sure how to write, then touch in with the writing center – they can help! I can, and will give ZERO points to papers that appear to plagiarize, even when accepts your paper – paraphrasing, copying, over-quoting, etc are all sources of plagiarism, even when you occasionally do cite. PLEASE write a good paper and put things into your own words so that we can see that you understand what you are writing about, and then CITE your sources whenever you are writing something that is NOT your own idea ☺ Use APA citation and reference format.

Due dates are listed in the syllabus. Don’t turn a paper in late, as the late penalty is really, really steep.


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