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Assignment 2: The Presentence Investigation—
Purpose and Procedure

One of the topics reviewed in this module is the development and purpose of a PSI report in many criminal justice systems. Most long-form PSIs contain at least six main sections, which are as follows:

  • Part A – A description of the offense
  • Part B – The defendant’s criminal history (broken down into juvenile and adult)
  • Part C – Offender characteristics—includes subsections of personal and family data; physical condition; mental and emotional health; substance abuse; educational, vocational, and special skills; employment; and financial condition
  • Part D – Sentencing options
  • Part E – Circumstances for departure
  • Part F – Variance

This organizational structure highlights the critical components of a PSI. It also offers a good overview of the functions of a PSI.

Click here to read a sample PSI report.

On the basis of what you’ve learned in this module and using specific examples from the PSI (read the sample PSI), prepare a 4- to 5-page paper to address the following:

  • How does a PSI help the court to determine an appropriate sentencing decision?
  • How does a PSI impact possible probation and parole decisions?
  • How does a PSI help the court determine the sentence length and make recommendations for institutional placement?
  • How does a PSI help the criminal justice system make informed decisions regarding probation or parole supervision?
  • How might a PSI help the criminal justice system with treatment recommendations?
  • How does a PSI assist corrections personnel in:
    • Offender classification
    • Offender management
    • Treatment options
    • Release planning
  • How does a PSI assist the defendant and defense counsel?

Be sure to support your position with specific examples and to include information from each of the six parts of the PSI.

Submission Details:

  1. Save the report as M2_A2_Lastname_Firstname.doc.
Assignment 2 Grading Criteria

Maximum Points

Analyzed how a PSI helps the court to determine an appropriate sentencing decision.

12

Analyzed how a PSI impacts possible probation and parole decisions.

12

Explained how a PSI helps the court determine the sentence length and make recommendations for institutional placement.

12

Explained how a PSI helps the criminal justice system make informed decisions regarding probations or parole supervision.

8

Analyzed how a PSI helps the criminal justice system with treatment recommendations.

8

Analyzed how a PSI assists personnel in:

  • Offender classification
  • Offender management
  • Treatment options
  • Release planning

20

Analyzed how a PSI assists the defendant and defense counsel.

8

Wrote in a clear, concise, and organized manner; demonstrated ethical scholarship in accurate representation and attribution of sources; displayed accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

20

Total:

100