Psychology and Firearms

In this class, Dr. Pirelli tackles the tough questions head-on: What psychological factors are associated with high-profile shooting cases? What is mental illness? Which diagnoses and symptoms are related to firearm-related violence and suicide? What does the law say about psychological problems and firearm ownership? What might lead a new applicant to be flagged or a permit holder’s firearms to be revoked? How does someone stay psychologically healthy to ensure firearm safety? These questions and more will be addressed in this cutting-edge course that promotes the mental health aspects of firearm competence. You will learn about psychological issues associated with the improper use of firearms, such as mental illness, substance use, violence, and suicide. You will also learn self-care techniques to utilize if you recognize mental health concerns in yourself or others. In addition, the mental health components of the existing and proposed firearm laws in New Jersey will be discussed. This interactive class is for everyone interested in developing their firearm competence: from those who have never handled a firearm to those with extensive experience.

This course is taught by Gianni Pirelli, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in New Jersey (#4975) and New York (#019418). Dr. Pirelli has extensive training and experience in Forensic Psychology. He conducts psychological evaluations in criminal and civil matters, including firearm-related assessments. He has published extensively in the area of forensic mental health assessment and he has taught numerous courses at the post-doctoral, graduate and undergraduate levels.

Course Pricing

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“Very informative and a good introduction to shooting safely.”

Hi Anthony, Thanks for your email. Yes – I enjoyed the class yesterday; it was very informative and a good introduction to shooting safely. I now feel confident enough to go to the range and practice independently. However, I know that this is only an introduction and want to come back for further classes. I just wish you were closer than the 2 hour drive! But it was well worth it and will be seeing you again in 4-6 weeks. Many thanks.



Prerequisites: None. The material is suitable for all, including appropriately supervised, mature children. Minimum age, 8 years old.


Length of Course:

3-4 hours


What to Bring:

• Bring pad and pencil for note taking
• Classroom theory only, no live fire


What We Will Cover

• Psychological Aspects of High-Profile Shooting Cases
• U.S. and NJ Firearm Statistics
• Mental health Components of NJ Firearm Laws
• Psychologists’ Roles in Firearm Cases
• Mental Illness: Definition, Statistics, and Review of Psychiatric Disorders
• Substance Use
• Violence
• Suicide
• Self-Care
• Q & A


Instructor Bios:

All of our high-level courses are taught by experienced professionals with the credentials to prove it. They are all trained and certified by the N.J. Police Training Commission, N.J. Department of Criminal Justice, and possess Federal Law Enforcement Instructor Certifications. They are experts in N.J. Use of Force Policies, and are always updating the course material with the latest use of force guidelines and case law. At Gun For Hire, this is not a “hobby”, but a full-time, legitimate vocation. Any “instructor” can teach you something, but only a select few can teach you the “why” or the “root of law” to justify your actions. If you were to use your newly acquired skills and were required to justify your actions, Gun For Hire instructors are ready, willing, and able to testify in your defense, as long as you had followed the training and procedures we provided. It does you, and your loved ones, no good if you survive the fight but have spend the next thirty years in prison because of the wrong advice you were given by a part-time amateur “instructor”.



What To Take Next

GFH Basic Pistol
GFH Basic Rifle
GFH Basic Shotgun

Disclaimer: In an effort to keep all of our students safe course objectives and drills are subject to change.