Catherine Shaffer

PhD Candidate, Simon Fraser University

I am a Ph.D. candidate in Forensic Psychology and Law at Simon Fraser University working under the supervision of Drs. Kevin Douglas and Jodi Viljoen. Broadly, my research focuses on the assessment and management of general and specialized forms of violence among youth and persons with a mental disorder, and evidence-based professional practices for working with these populations. I have authored or co-authored over 20 journal articles, book chapters, manuals, technical reports, and research briefs, and presented over 40 papers and posters at national and international conferences on these topics. My research has been featured in several media outlets (e.g., CBC Radio). I am a co-author of the Adolescent Risk and Resilience Outcomes Work Plan (ARRoW), a risk management and intervention-planning tool, which is currently used in criminal justice settings in Canada with several thousand adolescent offenders each year. From 2016 to 2017, I was an invited member of the Canadian Psychological Association’s Task Force on Medical Aid in Dying and End-of-Life Care, which was commissioned in response to federal legislation to decriminalize medical assistance in dying in Canada to consider whether persons with a mental disorder and mature minors should have access, and the role of psychologists in this process. I have completed professional and research positions with the American Psychology-Law Society, Global Institute of Forensic Research, International Association of Forensic Mental Health Services, Mental Health Law and Policy Institute, and Youth Forensic Psychiatric Services. As part of my dissertation, I will be adapting an adult physical and sexual intimate partner violence risk assessment tool for use by law enforcement, health care, social service, and school professionals with adolescents.


  • –present
    PhD Candidate, Simon Fraser University


  • 2014 
    Simon Fraser University, Master of Arts, Psychology