TRAINING

TRAINING

We provide research-based training and mentoring in the areas of interviewing, risk assessment, and other clinical domains. From brief, informal education sessions to intensive multi-day workshops, we work with our clients to design the best program to meet their specific operational needs.

Our training services include:

INTERVIEWING

The StepWise 360: Child and Youth Version

The StepWise approach is an empirically-based, semi-structured model for conducting investigative interviews that modernized child abuse investigations, first in BC and then in countries around the world.  It is the foundation of many other forensic interviewing  approaches that are in use today.

The StepWise 360: Child and Youth Version is a basic course that provides participants with the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct effective investigative interviews of children and adolescents.

This 3.5-day workshop provides participants with 24.5 hours of learning, with course material taught through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews.  Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • The 11 steps of the StepWise 360
  • Generating and testing hypotheses
  • Identifying and minimizing biases
  • Setting up interviews
  • Types of disclosures
  • Types of memory
  • Ways to cue memory while minimizing contamination
  • Developmental issues related to investigative interviews
  • Critiquing interviews and receiving constructive feedback

This workshop is suitable for any professional who conducts investigative interviews with children, such as police, mental health specialists, social workers, child protection specialists, and legal professionals.

The StepWise 360: Adult Version

The StepWise 360: Adult Version is a basic course that provides participants with the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct effective investigative interviews of adults.

This 3.5-day workshop provides participants with 24.5 hours of learning, with course material taught through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews.  Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • The 11 steps of the StepWise 360
  • Generating and testing hypotheses
  • Identifying and minimizing biases
  • Setting up interviews
  • Types of disclosures
  • Types of memory
  • Ways to cue memory while minimizing contamination
  • Critiquing interviews and receiving constructive feedback

This workshop is suitable for any professional who conducts investigative interviews, such as police, mental health specialists, social workers, child protection specialists, and legal professionals.

The StepWise 360: Interviewing Adults in the Child Protection Context

The StepWise 360: Interviewing Adults in the Child Protection Context provides advanced investigative interviewing training to child welfare practitioners who have previously completed a basic StepWise interviewing course (or equivalent).  It provides participants with the knowledge and skills required to reliably collect case-relevant information when investigating allegations of abuse, assessing a family’s strength and needs, or developing/monitoring family plans.

Participants will learn how to work effectively with reluctant, resistant, or hostile adult clients (such as offending and non-offending parents and foster parents) in a client-centered, strength-based, trauma-informed, and culturally-agile manner.

This 5-day workshop provides participants with 35 hours of learning.  Course material is delivered through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews.

Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • The role of the interview in the decision-making process
  • Self-awareness: identifying and neutralizing common biases
  • Dynamics of challenging characteristics and behaviours
  • Developing effective, semi-structured interview plans
  • Using informed consent to promote engagement
  • Establishing rapport and repairing relationship disruptions
  • Identifying, understanding, and working with a client’s reluctance and resistance within a motivational framework
  • Managing a client’s verbal and non-verbal behaviours
  • Effectively debriefing interviews to ensure safety and promote learning

This workshop is suitable for social workers who have a solid foundation in interviewing with at least three years of experience in the field.

The StepWise 360: Suspect Interview

The StepWise 360: Suspect Interview provides advanced investigative interviewing training to law enforcement professionals who have previously completed a basic StepWise interviewing course (or equivalent). It provides participants with the knowledge and skills required to effectively interview suspects. Participants will learn to motivate suspects to talk about the offence under investigation, to challenge resistance, to prepare and use evidence in a strategic manner, and to differentiate innocent from guilty suspects.

This 5-day workshop provides participants with 35 hours of learning.  Course material is delivered through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and recorded practice interviews.

Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • Suspect decision-making
  • The 11 steps of the StepWise 360
  • Identifying and neutralizing common biases
  • Gathering, analyzing, and preparing evidence
  • Developing effective, semi-structured interview plans
  • Identifying, understanding, and addressing discord
  • Strategic ordering of topics
  • Types of memory and how to collect memory evidence
  • Strategic questions about evidence
  • Basic principles of reading people
  • Underestanding motivation and using motivational interviewing
  • Eliciting Incriminating Evidence
  • Presenting evidence strategically

This workshop is suitable for police and other investigators who have a solid foundation in interviewing and at least three years of experience in the field.

The StepWise 360: Complex Cases

The StepWise Guidelines: Complex Cases is an advanced course for individuals who have previously completed a basic StepWise interviewing workshop (or an equivalent course).  It provides participants with the knowledge and skills required to conduct sensitive investigative interviews in complex cases, such as those involving preschool-aged children, barriers to disclosing, multiple witnesses, multiple perpetrators, repeated abuse, historical abuse, lengthy events, minimization, exaggeration, false allegations, and recantations.

This 3-day workshop provides participants with 21 hours of learning, with course material taught through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews. Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • The impact of offending patterns on children and investigative interviews
  • Adapting the StepWise in urgent cases
  • Triaging witnesses/interviews
  • Identifying and neutralizing reluctance to disclose
  • Novel ways to cue memory
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Strategic use of evidence
  • Trauma-informed, client-centered, and culturally-agile practices
  • Factors to cover in historical cases and recantation interviews

This workshop is suitable for any professional who conducts investigative interviews with adults, youth, or children, such as police, mental health specialists, social workers, child protection specialists, correctional officers, lawyers, and judges.

The StepWise 360: Tailoring for Special Needs

The StepWise 360: Tailoring for Special Needs is an advanced course for individuals who have previously completed a basic StepWise interviewing workshop (or an equivalent course).  It provides participants with the knowledge and skills required to conduct sensitive investigative interviews of individuals (adults, youth, and children) with diverse abilities including physical, psychological, and behavioural challenges.

This 3-day workshop provides participants with 21 hours of learning, with course material taught through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews.  When feasible, participants are given the opportunity to practice skills by interviewing a volunteer with special needs.  Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • A review of the StepWise 360
  • Generating and testing hypotheses
  • Identifying and minimizing biases
  • Critiquing interviews and receiving constructive feedback
  • Tailoring interviews to individuals with:
    • Visual and hearing impairment
    • Developmental delays
    • Attention deficits and hyperactivity
    • Social deficits and anxiousness
    • Traumatic stress reactions
    • Hostile uncooperativeness

This workshop is suitable for any professional who conducts investigative interviews with adults, youth, or children, such as police, mental health specialists, social workers, child protection specialists, correctional officers, lawyers, and judges.

The StepWise 360: Update and Practice

The StepWise 360: Update and Practice is a 1.5-day workshop for individuals who have previously completed a basic StepWise interviewing workshop.  It is designed to support and enhance effective interviewing skills for participants who are relatively new to the StepWise, or for those who were trained a long time ago and have not had the opportunity to practice in some time.

This workshop includes relevant research updates pertaining to forensic interviewing, with particular attention given to how it applies to the StepWise, and a question and answer period based on actual interviews from the field.  This format allows participants to learn from an array of past experiences, to troubleshoot current cases, and to become more proficient at adapting the StepWise to their future cases.  Questions raised by participants will be addressed through a variety of engaging exercises that help them practice the effective interviewing skills they will use in the field.

The StepWise 360: Child Abuse Investigations

The StepWise 360: Conducting Child Abuse Investigations is a semi-structured investigative approach that was specifically developed to:

  • Maximize fact-finding and the collection of memory evidence;
  • Minimize the negative impact of investigations on the individuals involved; and
  • Reduce biases that could place the integrity of the investigation at risk.

This course provides 35 hours of learning, with course material taught through a combination of interactive lecture, video analysis, transcript exercises, demonstrations, individual and group exercises, and practice interviews.  It provides participants with the knowledge and skills required to reliably conduct sensitive investigative interviews of children.  Among the topics covered, this course includes information on:

  • The four stages of the StepWise Investigation and the nine steps of the StepWise Interview
  • Relevant Canadian laws, child protection issues, and other legal considerations
  • Identifying and neutralizing biases
  • Generating and testing hypotheses
  • Types and sources of evidence
  • Dynamics of child abuse, offending patterns, and impact on victims
  • Types of disclosures, barriers to disclosing, and ways to overcome them
  • Parent and disclosure person interviews
  • Tailoring interviews to various developmental levels and cultural backgrounds
  • Types of memory and ways to cue memory without contaminating it
  • The process of assessing credibility
  • Effective documentation and communication of findings
  • Working collaboratively in teams
  • Critiquing interviews and receiving constructive feedback

This workshop is suitable for any professional who conducts child abuse investigations, such as police, mental health specialists, social workers, child protection specialists, lawyers, and judges.

The StepWise Interview Mentoring (SWIM) Programs

Our approach to training focuses on:

  1. Providing skill-enhancing education;
  2. Tailoring training methodology to achieve specific operational needs;
  3. Transferring learning from the classroom to the field; and
  4. Maximizing the return on investment for valuable training dollars.

To achieve these goals, StepWise interviewing workshops were developed to provide trainees with the foundational knowledge and skills necessary to improve the quality of their investigative interviews.

The StepWise Interview Mentoring (SWIM) programs were developed to support and enhance this process.  Indeed, research demonstrates that trainees require ongoing supervision and support in order to successfully transfer the skills they learn in the classroom to actual workplace situations.  Without ongoing quality assurance and performance feedback, trainees are at risk of reverting to old, ineffective, and inefficient practices; or of misapplying newly acquired skills.  Not only does this reduce the cost-effectiveness of training, it also compromises staff competencies and exposes organizations to potential criticism.

The SWIM programs were developed to mitigate these problems with training.  They are geared towards maximizing an organization’s training output, while minimizing disruptions to its operations – which is often the largest cost associated with training.  Moreover, SWIM provides an organization with an independent and objective evaluation of its investigative interview practices.

 

TFP offers several SWIM options:

  1. SWIM Basic Skills program supports individuals who have completed StepWise interview courses by providing them with personalized feedback from a qualified TFP StepWise mentor. Trainees have recordings of their real-life interviews evaluated by a mentor.  For this version of the SWIM, non-challenging cases are reviewed to assess the trainee’s basic interviewing skills and adherence to the StepWise Guidelines.  During feedback sessions, trainees learn what they did well, what they could have done better, and when they could have used different interviewing tools.  Trainees also have the opportunity to consult with mentors on topics related to investigative interviewing (e.g., eyewitness memory, special needs populations, offending patterns), providing them with rare, individualized access to experts in the field.

 

  1. SWIM Mock Interview program was developed to provide individuals with individualized feedback and coaching for contexts in which real-life interviews are not available (e.g., when interviews were not recorded in the field or when recordings cannot be released to outside agencies). In this version of the SWIM, participants conduct a mock interview with an actor via Skype, teleconference, or in person.  At the conclusion of the interview, trainees receive immediate feedback from a mentor.  They also have the opportunity to consult with mentors on topics related to investigative interviewing.

 

  1. SWIM Challenging Cases program is designed to support StepWise interviewers when working with challenging cases (e.g., witnesses with special needs; witness who are reluctant to disclose). In this version of the SWIM, particularly challenging interviews are selected for review and feedback is given to a larger audience in the form of a case conference.  This allows for informative discussions and a question-and-answer period.  Group SWIM can be conducted via Skype, teleconference, or in person.

 

  1. SWIM Review program was designed to provide trainees and organizations with feedback on the organization’s overall interviewing practices. Through the review of individual and group SWIM programs, mentors are able to identify patterns across interviews that point to systemic issues.  In this version of the SWIM, systemic issues are reviewed and addressed via lecture and practical exercises. The SWIM Review program is delivered in a workshop format over one to two days, depending on the number and complexity of issues to be covered. This allows for informative discussions and a question-and-answer period, as well as a review of new developments in research and interviewing techniques.

 

The SWIM program is suitable for new and experienced interviewers working with adults, youth, or children, who want to gain confidence in their ability to consistently and efficiently gather valid and reliable information.

RISK ASSESSMENT

Assessing Risk for Violence I: Foundational Knowledge and Skills
This workshop will give you the knowledge and skills required to conduct reliable, valid, unbiased, and defensible risk assessments. You will learn the best practices and latest tools used in the field.
Assessing Risk for Violence II: Case Formulation
This workshop will help you conceptualize cases so that you can identify the specific factors and situations that increase an individual’s risk for violence, and the ways to manage that risk. You will learn how to do this using a step-by-step approach that results in consistently valid and reliable assessments.
Assessing Risk for Sexual Offending: Using Static-99R, Stable 2007, and Acute 2007
This workshop will teach you how to reliably and accurately use three of the most widely used sex offender risk assessment tools in Canada. You will learn about the latest research and best practices in the assessment and treatment of sexual offending.
Treatment Considerations for Men Who Access Child Sexual Exploitation Materials
This workshop will give you an understanding of risk assessment issues with Child Sexual Exploitation Material offenders (CSEMOs), the effectiveness of treatment with this population, ongoing controversies, and appropriate treatment targets. Case examples will be used to prompt discussion regarding case formulation and treatment planning. Participants will also be provided with copies of publically available measures that can be used in day to day clinical practice.
Assessing Risk Mentoring (ARM) Program
This program will take your risk assessment skills to the next level. It allows individuals or groups to consult with our qualified experts and receive detailed feedback on their actual assessments.

CLINICAL

Assessing Decision-Making Capacity: Informed Consent
This workshop will teach you how to accurately assess a person’s ability to make decisions in general, and to provide informed consent in particular. You will learn about the myths and barriers that can result in biased evaluations and the ways to overcome them.
Working with Individuals with Special Needs
This workshop will help you work more effectively with people of diverse abilities. You will learn some of the myths and barriers that get in the way and the ways to overcome them. You will learn ways to adapt tools and procedures for individuals with development delays, brain injuries, mental illnesses, and personality disorders.
For more information, call  1-877-342-2434  /  604-239-2434   or email info@theforensicpractice.com