FBI Behavioral Science Unit

APA Congressional and Executive Branch Science Fellows learned how psychological scientists address the mission needs of a government agency

Earlier this month Science GRO staff included the current APA Congressional and Executive Branch Science Fellows in a visit to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Behavioral Science Unit (BSU), to learn more about how psychological scientists within the federal government address the mission needs of a particular government agency. 

At the FBI, BSU scientists (including staff with expertise in psychology, criminology, sociology, conflict resolution and management) “provide cutting edge training, high-impact research, and consultation in the behavioral sciences in support of the FBI’s mission and the work of the broader law enforcement and intelligence communities. They also work closely with…[the] National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime and the Personnel Recovery Coordination Group of…[the FBI] Critical Response Group.” 

BSU scientists train new FBI agents, as well as domestic and international law enforcement officers, military and intelligence officers, and the unit sponsors both intramural and university-based collaborative research in areas that include global hostage-taking, gangs and gang violence, counter-terrorism, homicide and youth violence.