After training and practicing as a qualified nurse, Rachel embarked upon a change of career and studied Health Psychology and Social Sciences at Edinburgh Queen Margaret University College, where she achieved an Upper Second class Bachelor of Science Degree with honours. It was during this degree that Rachel discovered her passion for Forensic Psychology and pursued a Master of Forensic (Criminological and Legal) Psychology degree, where she achieved a distinction at Glasgow Caledonian University in 2000.
Rachel joined the Scottish Prison Service in 2001 and has 19 years experience of working in forensic psychology. She worked in various roles in the Scottish Prison Service including Head of Psychology at HMP Edinburgh and Principal Psychologist at Headquarters, informing policy and practice across the service. Rachel is a Chartered Forensic Psychologist with the British Psychological Society as well as an affiliate member of the BPS and she is registered with the HCPC.
Rachel is well known in Scotland as an experienced risk assessor and is accredited with the Risk Management Authority in Scotland. She undertakes intensive risk assessment reports for sentencing purposes for the Courts as well as working in prisons with convicted offenders. Her main speciality is in assessing and treating sexual offenders. Rachel also has considerable experience of assessing violent offenders and in undertaking personality assessments, and experience of assessing intimate partner violence perpetrators, offenders who stalk, young offenders and individuals who have learning difficulties.
Rachel is an Assessor for the Division of Forensic Psychology for the Stage 2 Qualification that provides eligibility for registration with the HCPC and BPS. She is a member of the Parole Board for England and Wales and a national Scottish Prison Service trainer, delivering Sex Offender Treatment training, Working with Sexual Offenders who have Personality Disorders, Healthy Sex and the HCR-20. She is CBT and Schema trained and is skilled in the administration of a diverse range of psychological assessments. Rachel keeps up-to-date with the literature relating to the areas she practices within.