Behaviour Profiling

Sneak Peek


The importance of understanding human behaviour

Many people assume behavioural profiling is only used in the fields of criminal and forensics. However, profiling is being used more and more for recruitment, human resources, deciding on the best candidate to promote, educational purposes and much more.

Profiling is a useful technique to help find out more about people – how to decide the ideal candidate for a particular job, the particular personal traits shown by criminals, personality traits and qualities shown by children with special educational needs and so on. 

A profile helps us to outline what a person is really like, their personality traits and characteristics.  It can help us to determine:

  • If a person is suitable for a particular role or profession
  • Whether they have a particular characteristic, such as intelligence or narcissism
  • Whether they have a particular personality disorder or behaviour pattern, such as Type A Behaviour Pattern or Antisocial Personality Disorder.
  • Their mental health state
  • If they have any clinical conditions

It can also help in other ways, such as:

  • What type of customer will buy a particular product.
  • What type of characteristics a child with special educational needs may display

This 20 hour short course gives you an insight into the use of profiling in different settings – education, customer profiling, marketing, criminal behaviour and recruitment.  


The course has six lessons:

Lesson 1: Introduction 

  • What is profiling?
  • Personality
  • Types of profiling
  • When and why do we carry out profiling?
  • How profiling is done
  • Lesson 1 additional reading
  • Types of serial killers
  • Psychopaths
  • But why do murderers kill?
  • Who commits murder?
  • Murder statistics

Lesson 2: How To Profile Someone 

  • Profiling techniques
  • Putting it all together
  • Psychological testing in recruitment – how good is it?
  • Personality testing in recruitment

Lesson 3: Interviews and Questionnaires 

  • Psychological screening
  • What is an interview?
  • Planning an interview: structured or unstructured
  • Components of a profiling interview
  • What can go wrong?
  • Dealing with interview data
  • Competency based interviews in recruitment
  • Non-verbal behaviour
  • Active listening and SOLER

Lesson 4: Behavioural Assessment

  • The ABC model
  • Traditional vs behavioural assessment
  • Different applications of behavioural assessments
  • Behavioural assessment techniques
  • Problems with behavioural assessments
  • Functional analysis
  • More on behavioural assessments
  • Methods of behavioural assessment
  • The focus of assessment
  • Analysis of problem behaviour

Lesson 5: Classical Assessment Tests

  • The nature of traditional assessment tests
  • Reliability and validity of psychological tests
  • More on Wechsler intelligence scales
  • Subtests
  • Psychological testing in recruitment – how good is it?

Lesson 6: What Comes Next?

  • Applications for profiles
  • How & where to use a profile
  • Computer profiling
  • Ethics of profiling
  • Problems with profiling
  • The future of profiling
  • Profiling – a summary



We are talking about forensic profiling, where psychologists and behavioural scientists will use science and experience to try to develop a profile of a criminal. They will use information gained through research and study. Research has found that the following factors can influence who commits a crime.

Why Do People Murder?


In the Western world, nearly 90% of murders are committed by males.  Males are also the victims in nearly 75% of murders.  


Age also affects murder rates, there is an increase in murders between the ages of 17 and 30.  People are less likely to commit murder as they age, but murders committed by children and adolescents are also rare.  However, if we look at research across different countries and cultures, the patterns do not always appear similar. For example, in Korea, according to the Asian Correspondent newspaper, 37.4% of murderers are men, which is obviously less than in America. But all of the criminals had committed their crimes in their 30s.


We often watch movies and TV programmes where we think it is going to be the spouse who did the murder.  But the Crime Prevention Research Centre in America found that –

  • 9.4% of murders were committed by a husband, wife, common-law husband or wife, father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister in law, step-father, step-mother, step-son or step-daughter.
  • 1.8% were other family members.  
  • 4.2% were boyfriends, girlfriends, ex-husbands or ex-wives
  • 14% were acquaintances. This is a broad category can include taxi drivers to prostitutes and their customers.
  • 3.1% was a friend
  • 5.4% was other known
  • 11% a stranger
  • 39% was a unknown relationship. For example, they were involved in a gang fight but there was no apparent direct relationship between the victim and murderer.
  • 1% a neighbor
    But even looking at these statistics, it is not quite so clear cut. With family murders, the murderers tended to also have a criminal record for other crimes, so it is not just a simple someone in  the family murdered the person.


Mental Illness 

There is often a misconception that people who commit murder are mentally ill in some way.  However, this is not always the case.  The Asian Correspondent reported that 81.3% of Korean murderers had no particular mental illness. 3.9% suffered depression, 0.7% had a mental illness.  Time to Change in the UK reports that the majority of murders are committed by people who do not have mental health problems.  They estimate that there are 50 – 70 murders per year that involve a person with a mental health problem at the time of the murder.  

It also depends on the type of mental illness you are discussing.  We will talk more on psychopathy and antisocial personality disorder shortly, but some mental health conditions do make a person more prone to violence. We will use some of these terms during the course, so it is useful to understand the terms used.


Course  Features:

  • Enrol any time.
  • Start studying immediately or later (as you wish).
  • Configure your study sessions at any length and frequency you wish.
  • Work through at your own pace.
  • Automated self assessment tests pop up at the end of each lesson. You can attempt these as many times as you wish; and each time, upon completion, you can see your results. You will need internet access to complete the self assessment tests.
  • At the end of the whole course, you are presented with a major automated examination which can be attempted online, anywhere, anytime.
  • If you achieve a 60% pass in the exam; you immediately receive a downloadable certificate of completion with your name on it.


For a human resources manager, supervisor or employer, it may help them to a better understanding of how to select and manage their staff. For anyone involved with law enforcement it may help to understand and predict the behaviour of criminals. Counsellors, welfare workers, teachers, marketing professionals and many others can also find applications for behavioural profiling.

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