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Although serial killing is relatively uncommon (thankfully!), the personality features and mental health profiles that most serial killers share are not extremely rare. Even if we have little occasion to treat known serial killers in a clinical setting, it is important to know the developmental characteristics, environmental drivers, and psychological factors that uniquely contribute to this type of violent, horrific, and destructive behavior. A solid clinical foundation in this area of neurocriminology plays a critical role in prevention, which may ultimately save lives.

Serial killing is a complex, multifaceted, and frightening criminal behavior that is likely influenced by several prenatal and postnatal neurological, biological, social, family, and psychological factors. This training will examine the neurobiopsychosocial factors associated with serial killing through a neurocriminological and forensic psychological lens. Early life prevention and intervention strategies will also be discussed. Related topics discussed during the course of this training will include patterns, profiles, motives, and typologies, victim-offender dynamics, similarities and differences between serial killing and mass homicide offenders, head injury, frontal lobe impairments, attachment dysregulation, psychophysiology, criminal profiling, childhood abuse and neglect, biochemical abnormalities, dysfunctional caregiving practices, rejection, humiliation, and abandonment, bullying, deviant sexual fantasies, MacDonald triad, the Dark Tetrad, narcissistic injury and more. Empirically based research findings and case studies will be discussed throughout this training.



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This training will provide participants clinical knowledge and tools to:

a). Define serial killing, neurocriminology, forensic psychology, and other related constructs.

b). Learn and describe the potential prenatal and postnatal factors associated with these cases.

c). Learn and describe how neurocriminology and forensic psychology research can provide additional insights into why some individuals become serial killers.

d). Learn and describe early life prevention and intervention approaches through a neurocriminological and forensic psychological lens.

e). Review and discuss empirically based research findings and related case studies.


Target Audience:

Mental health counselors, psychologists, social workers, drug and alcohol counselors, marriage and family therapists, telehealth treatment professionals, and other clinical mental health professionals.


Instructional Level: Intermediate

Instructor(s): Jerrod Brown, PhD, MA, MS, MS, MS

Material Author(s): Jerrod Brown, PhD, MA, MS, MS, MS

Jerrod Brown, Ph.D., M.A., M.S., M.S., M.S., is a professor, trainer, researcher, and consultant with multiple years of experience teaching collegiate courses. Jerrod is also the founder and CEO of the American Institute for the Advancement of Forensic Studies (AIAFS). Jerrod has also provided consultation services to a number of caregivers, professionals, and organizations pertaining to topics related to autism spectrum disorder (ASD), fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), confabulation, suggestibility, trauma and other life adversities, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and youth firesetting. Jerrod has completed four separate master’s degree programs and holds graduate certificates in Neuropsychology, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Other Health Disabilities (OHD), and Traumatic-Brain Injuries (TBI). Jerrod has also conducted over 200 workshops, webinars, and on-demand trainings for various organizations and professional and student audiences. In 2021, Jerrod completed a post-doctoral certificate in Leadership and Organizational Strategy from Walden University and a Professional Certificate in Forensic Psychology from San Diego State University Global Campus. Currently, Jerrod is pursuing a graduate certificate in Neuroscience and the Law from Michigan State University. Jerrod has published several articles and book chapters, and recently, co-edited the book Forensic Mental Health: A Source Guide for Professionals (Brown & Weinkauf, 2018) with Erv Weinkauf. Jerrod is also regularly featured on several national and international podcast programs. Email:

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