Forensic Psychology
Forensic Psychology

Forensic Psychology

Lead Author(s): Denise Emer

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A survey of the most important cases, research, concepts, and controversies in Forensic Psychology

A Little About Me...

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Dr. Denise Emer, Associate Professor/Chair, Daemen College, Department of Psychological Sciences, Amherst, NY 14221 (Office Phone, 716-839-8257). My email is, and my faculty bio page can be found at Dr. Emer faculty bio page

Dr. Denise Emer is an Associate Professor/Chairperson in the Daemen College Department of Psychological Sciences. Dr. Emer holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Psychology from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She has been conducting teacahing and research at the college level for over 20 years. 

Dr. Emer began her graduate study in the area of developmental and cognitive psychology, but became fascinated with clinical/forensic areas of the field in her final year of graduate school, and was fortunate to access mentors who were willing to provide the training she needed to reorient her study and reinvent herself professionally. 

During her final graduate year, and first 3 years of tenure-track teaching at St. Bonaventure University, in Olean. NY, Dr. Emer completed an externship at the Buffalo Psychiatric Center working with severe and persistent mentally ill clients. She also received training in forensic psychology under the mentorship of Dr. Joseph Davis, a California based Forensic Psychologist who teaches at California State University. works with California Department of Justice, and has been a leader in the field for many years.

Dr. Emer’s research has been eclectic, focusing on various areas of clinical, forensic, and health psychology, including, the efficacy of group therapy approaches for people with Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder, the relationship between perfectionism and performance, Obsessive Relational Intrusion and Stalking behaviors in college populations, and jealousy and infidelity in college students. Dr. Emer has also previously conducted research on factors that impact potential jurors’ decisions about insanity pleas and related mental health factors that mitigate criminal responsibility.

Dr. Emer's current research focus has been on subclinical characteristics of the so-called "Dark Tetrad" personality traits (Narcissism, Sadism, Psychopathy, and Machiavellianism) in everyday populations, including college, business, and community populations and how they impact specific behaviors as well as workplace effectiveness. 

Dr. Emer is enthusiastic about teaching undergraduates about her discipline and helping them to understand how the science of psychology can contribute to a better life for everyone regardless of an individual’s college major, interests, or career aspirations. Dr. Emer regularly teaches courses in Forensic Psychology, Health Psychology, and the Psychology of Mental Illness (a.k.a., “Abnormal Psychology”), as well as Junior level seminar courses in The Psychology of Violence, and Senior Field Practicum in Psychology.

Dr. Emer has had the pleasure of mentoring several undergraduate student research projects, both as part of the required thesis for psychology majors at Daemen College, and also as Independent Study endeavors. Several of these projects have been submitted for publication and/or presentation at national research conferences. 

In her spare time, Dr. Emer is an avid musician, whose passion is singing blues, funk, soul, and classic rock. She also enjoys dancing (esp. Latin and Hip Hop), weight training, and movies. Her three teenagers, Nick, Sam, and Zoe keep her very busy outside of the classroom, along with her dog Sylas, and her large family of rescue cats.