CJS 100. Contemporary Issues in American Politics. 3 Credit Hours.
A study of several important issues in contemporary American society and of the manner in which they are being handled by our political system. Among the issues covered are: the energy crisis, nuclear energy, toxic wastes, inflation, recession, government spending, crime, military spending, the arms race and the new religious right. This course does not fulfill requirements for a major in political science; it will carry credit toward a minor.
Cross-listed Courses: PSC 100
CJS 101. Introduction to Criminology. 3 Credit Hours.
This course offers an interdisciplinary exploration of crime, its causes and notions of justice. The concepts of crime and justice will be explored drawing on writings from the humanities (English literature, philosophy, religious studies, history) and research from the social sciences (sociology, anthropology, economics, political science and psychology).
CJS 111. Critical Issues in Criminology & Criminal Justice. 3 Credit Hours.
This course explores critical/contemporary issues in criminology and criminal justice. It investigates specific crime concerns or injustices in society and how they are understood, analyzed, and responded to by researchers as well as practitioners, and other professionals in the justice system. Examples of topics that may be covered in this course include but are not limited to: the war on drugs, sex crimes, cybercrime, hate crime, human trafficking, homicide, genocide, crimes against animals and the environment, state violence, and/or wrongful convictions and exonerations. Students in this course will gain an introductory understanding of criminology and criminal justice as related to issues selected by the instructor through considerations of the research, theory, and evidence-based practices along with solutions. They will critically think about crime and "justice"-and they will conduct their own criminologically-driven investigations (traditional or applied) to learn more about a given harm, address controversies/debates, and develop strategies/solutions for future justice.
CJS 201. Research Methods. 3 Credit Hours.
This course is an introduction to the research methodologies employed by social scientists. Major analytic issues covered in the course include measurement validity and reliability, the grounds for making causal inferences, sampling and research ethics. Major techniques to be studied include participant observation, survey research, experimentation, intensive interviewing and evaluation research. Required of all sociology/ criminology majors.
CJS 202. Gender and Crime. 3 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course examines crime and criminal justice as gendered phenomena. It explores how notions of masculinity and femininity shape and are shaped by criminalized practices, the operation of the criminal justice system, and our understandings of both. Focusing on gender does not mean focusing exclusively on women. Gender is a relational concept; both men and women are gendered. In this course we will consider the implications of feminist theorizing for a range of criminological concepts, approaches, and themes. Case studies from various social contexts (e.g. the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil, etc.) will help students develop cultural sensitivity and a more complete understanding of our social world. Additionally, the course will develop students' ability to think critically about gender and crime from an intersectional standpoint. Historical and contemporary works by criminologists, anthropologists, sociologists, feminist theorists, and others will be reviewed. An auxiliary aim of this course is to develop students' capacity to read and write academic texts efficiently and effectively.
Fulfills Core Requirement(s): Diversity (DIV)and Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS).
CJS 220. The Criminal Justice System. 3 Credit Hours.
This course examines the criminal justice system and its effects on individuals within the system. It also considers the criminal justice systems effects on individuals both inside and outside the system with respect to the commission of crime.
CJS 223. Global Crime. 3 Credit Hours.
This course explores illegal activity and criminalization in the context of the destabilizing effects of globalization. The course considers the transnational dimension of crime in both the developed and postcolonial parts of the world, and its connections to our own everyday lives. The course will cover the growth and character of the extra-legal networks of power and finance that shape our contemporary world, and will examine their relations with state power, corporate business, and law enforcement activities. Finally, it introduces some of the challenges of both supra-state and popular responses to illegitimate activities that are shaped by global political economy.
Fulfills Core Requirement: Diversity (DIV).
CJS 225. Gangs and Criminal Community. 3 Credit Hours.
This course introduces students to gang-life as an urban phenomenon that starts in the 19th century and that in the 2000s is diffused across the margins and illicit flows of the global economy. Students will read memoirs of members of gang communities, with attention to notions of agency and iconoclasm, situating gang life in a continuum of political resistance. We will aslo look at the history of modern transnational gangs as a view into the history of displacement, modern war, and the pre-history to the discourses surrounding "global terrorism", giving students the tools for a critical reading of current debates around state security, "organized crime", and sovereignty. Fulfills Core requirement(s): DIV.
CJS 226. Extreme Murder. 3 Credit Hours.
This course examines the phenomenon of extreme murder. In particular, serial killers, spree killers, and mass murderers - as well as the circumstances surrounding these events - are explored. Other egregious types of offenders may also be reviewed. Throughout the duration of the course, students will learn about infamous killers as well as those who are less recognized in media and popular culture, and the impact of the crimes on persons and society. Students in this course will study copious cases and take a multidimensional approach to critically examine risk factors/causes underlying such violence. In addition to discussing offenders, victims and the context within which victims and offenders interact (the criminal event perspective) will be analyzed. Special attention will be given to sex and gender, among other variables such as race and class. Students will also explore theory and give thought to deterministic, social, cultural, and other explanations. Importantly, they will come to understand how criminological and sociological research has contributed to knowledge (e.g. through qualitative and quantitative techniques) and shaped practice (e.g. criminal profiling, risk assessment, proactive policing, victim-services, etc.).
CJS 232. Family Violence. 3 Credit Hours.
Using sociological perspectives, this course will examine family violence including the abuse of partners, children and elders. It will focus on understanding the origins and the larger forces leading to and reinforcing family violence, and as well as on the microdynamics of violence within families. It will also examine how family violence varies across differences such as race/ethnicity, sexual orientation and disability.
CJS 244. Race and Ethnic Relations. 3 Credit Hours.
Race and ethnicity are a significant aspect of American society, especially as one of the main modes of social stratification. This class will introduce students to the major sociological perspectives on race and ethnicity and will further develop their sociological understanding of and critical thinking about race in the United States. This class will also encourage students to examine race in the U.S., with an emphasis on class, gender and urban life. At the end of this class, students should be familiar with the social importance that race and ethnicity play in everyday life.
CJS 255. Criminal Investigation. 3 Credit Hours.
Do you intend to work in the field of criminal justice? Then it's critical to read about and learn from research, as practitioners in today's world transform knowledge into action. Criminal investigation will provide a basic understanding of criminal investigation including the history of criminal investigation, investigative techniques used for different types of crimes (violent and property), basics of evidence collection and analysis, responsibilities of investigators, intelligence gathering, and the legal aspects of criminal investigation. Additionally, the course will cover research, policy, and evidence-based practices that are increasingly being considered in the field in order for students to learn to recognize the value of translating research into practice.
CJS 265. Punishment, Corrections & Community. 3 Credit Hours.
This course examines the correctional system and its effects on individuals within the system. While punishment is associated with crime, we rarely give thought to why we use it, how it's implemented, and whether it works to reduce/prevent criminality. This course will examine the origin and development of corrections, examining its mission in deterrence of criminal behavior. Through an in-depth exploration of the correctional system, the students gains an understanding of the individual and collective function of rehabilitation, deterrence, and community-based sanctions. They will also consider whether the rational choice model of our current correctional system is best, and how we might address any shortcomings. Thisrelates to the criminology proram's focus on using criminological research to assess criminal justice practices in ways that strive to bring forth a most just social world.
CJS 266. Criminal Law. 3 Credit Hours.
Criminal Law provides students with an overview of the power and limits of government authority to define, prohibit, grade, and punish socially harmful behavior. It includes the nature of criminal law, classification of crimes and criminal liability, punishment, and more. Students in this class will gain an understanding of legal terms, key cases, clauses, and chronologies in criminal law, and they will analyze judicial thinking and legal reasoning. Various cases are used to illustrate how the courts operate and how decisions are made that can impact society. Students in this case will also apply their knowledge in case briefs and written work to demonstrate critical thinking relating to criminal law.
CJS 301. Crime & Punishment From a Comparative Perspective. 3 Credit Hours.
This course uses social science, historical, activist, and cross-cultural perspectives to consider the process of criminalization-how certain acts come to be defined as crimes, and certain categories of people come to be considered criminals-as well as social responses to crime. This course will treat the relative concept of "crime" as a social force with special consideration on how it relates to power; legitimacy; citizenship; rights; and the social inequalities of race, class, and gender. Critical exploration of these connections is applied to current challenges and ways of addressing them.
Cross-listed Courses: GWS 301
CJS 305. Criminological Theory. 3 Credit Hours.
Criminology is the scientific study of crime and criminal behavior. Various theoretical perspectives (e.g. psychological, biological, sociological, etc.) are reviewed, along with their respective solutions, for crime and criminality in American society Different types of offenses are also explored (e.g. violent crime, property crime, victimless crime, corporate crime, etc.). By critically examining theories of crime causation, students gain an understanding of the social forces which shape and contribute to the commission of crime and criminal events in American society.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 305
CJS 321. Law,Society & Social Science. 3 Credit Hours.
The structure and functions of law as an institution are analyzed from the perspectives of classical and contemporary social scientific theories. The legal processes of the assignment of responsibility, the resolution of disputes, the distribution of social rewards and the imposition of sanctions are studied in cross-cultural perspective. Attention is also focused on the use of social scientific knowledge by legal institutions.
CJS 322. Economics of Crime and Punishment. 3 Credit Hours.
This course examines contemporary issues of crime, punishment, and criminal justice from an economic perspective. Basic economic concepts such as rational choice, opportunity costs, cost-benefit analysis, and supply and demand provide insights into criminal justice concerns. Public policies for crime control are assessed with consideration of underlying economic realities and economic effects. Contemporary topics may include effectiveness of alternative crime control measures and 'tough on crime' public policies, costs, and benefits of incarceration, the war on drugs, gun control, and capital punishment. Readings are drawn from the Social Sciences; with the focus on applying economic methods to evaluate criminal justice issues. No prerequisites.
CJS 323. Juvenile Delinquency. 3 Credit Hours.
After examining the causes of delinquency among juveniles and the various ways of treating delinquents, the second part of the course focuses on juvenile court: the history of the juvenile court movement, current procedures employed by the juvenile court and its relationship with other community agencies that deal with delinquents.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 323
CJS 326. Deviance. 3 Credit Hours.
This course covers major theories in the field of deviance. Students will become familiar with classical, positivist, functionalist, strain, social disorganization, social control, social learning, interactionist, critical, feminist and conflict theories. Students will also gain experience critiquing social science research and learn the fundamentals of designing social science research projects.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 326
CJS 335. Psychology and the Law. 3 Credit Hours.
The legal system is a pervasive and important part of our lives. The goal of this course is to help students develop an understanding of the psychological aspects of the functioning of the system and the effects of the legal system on us. This course will address the social psychological aspects that impact and are impacted by the legal system. Students will develop an understanding of many issues, including how psychologists contribute to the law and the legal system, psychological theories of crime, psychological issues related to the selection and performance of police officers, the dynamics of eyewitness testimony, jury selection and performance and confessions. Junior standing required.
Fulfills Core Requirement(s): Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS).
CJS 343. Immigration. 3 Credit Hours.
This course examines the topic of immigration from multiple perpectives: historical comparison between current and previous waves of immigrants, politcal debates over what we should do locally and nationally, the complex economic and social impacts of immigrants(both legal and unauthorized), the changing legal environment, comparative immigration policies, and the post-9/11 national security implications of immigration. This course aims to have you explore and challenge your own views, try to make sense of completing arguments and evidence, and gain a respect for perspectives not your own. A visit to the National Immigration Museum at Ellis Island may be planned.Fulfills Core Requirement(s): Diversity (DIV).
CJS 345. Conflict Resolution. 3 Credit Hours.
This course will introduce students to the field of conflict resolution. It will include an overview of the history and theories of the field and some of the major critiques of present theories and practices. The course also will provide students with an understanding of the spectrum of role professionals in conflict resolution undertake. Students will gain selected conflict resolution skills and come to understand conflict experientially by participating in three role plays demonstrating issues associated with inter-personal, inter-group and organizational conflict.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 345
CJS 351. Victimology. 3 Credit Hours.
This course analyzes and scientifically examines the physical, emotional, and financial impact of crime on its victims. Specific types of victims and crime will be studied, including homicide, sexual assault, domestic violence, child maltreatment, elder abuse, and assault. This in-depth course requires the student to analyze restitution issues, the treatment of victims by the criminal justice system, victims' rights legislation, and contemporary trends in the treatment of victims.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 351
CJS 381. Understanding Modern Terrorism. 3 Credit Hours.
This course is designed to introduce students to the academic understanding of terrorism. Through this course students will come to understand the motivations underlying terrorist behavior on an individual and structural level. In addition, the student will become more aware of the role of the U.S. in world affairs and the reaction from other countries regarding this involvement. The impact of these two areas on terrorist behaviors will be analyzed. Through readings of both historical events and academic research, students will become more aware of the influences on the rise, success, and the end of terrorist campaigns.
CJS 390. Independent Study in Criminology. 1-3 Credit Hours.
A student who wishes to pursue an independent study project in criminology for academic credit must submit, prior to registration, a proposed plan of study that includes the topic to be studied and goal to be achieved, the methodology to be followed, schedule of supervision, end product, evaluation procedure and number of credits sought. The proposal must be approved by the supervising faculty member, the department chair and the Dean of Arts & Sciences. It will be kept on file in the Dean's office.
CJS 396. Race, Gender and Justice. 3 Credit Hours.
This course critically examines major theories, research findings, policies, and controversies concerning race, gender, and crime in the context of social justice. In terms of disciplinary affirmation, the focus is on criminology theory, but with a predisposition towards ways in which questions of social justice can be viewed from a sociological perspective. The first objective of the course is to debunk the myth that there is a cast iron boundary between questions of criminal justices and social justice. Along with this objective is the need to provide students who are interested in pursuing a criminal justice career an awareness of key discourses in criminology in conjunction with a keen sense of empathy required for the maintenance of social order in an increasingly diversified universe. The second objective of the course is to explore how theoretical insights can provide the tools for making sense of the vast amount of data and information on crime and the criminal justice system especially as it relates to debates and contestation on questions of race, ethnicity, and gender. Students will get the opportunity to explore the main sources used for research. This will enable us to achieve our third objective; in what ways can our findings inform social policy in the desire to provide equal justice for all. We shall conclude our exploration by returning to our starting place: Can race, ethnicity, and gender be useful analytic categories?
CJS 450. Advanced Seminar in Criminology. 3 Credit Hours.
This course is designed to advance the students understanding of criminological thought. Students will be introduced to the classics of criminology through an examination of the original works. Building upon prior classes in criminological theory, the current class discusses the theoretical importance, empirical status, and policy implications for a range of theories ranging from structural theories to trait theories.
CJS 451. Capstone Course in Criminology and Sociology. 3 Credit Hours.
This is the capstone course for the criminology and sociology curricula. The course provides a forum where students can demonstrate mastery of the tools acquired throughout their curricula including content knowledge and skills for conducting social science research. Students will examine topics of interest, review the scholarly literature on these topics and conduct empirical research thata answers one or more questions on these topics. The final product of this course is a piece of scholarly/professional writing.
Cross-listed Courses: SOC 451
CJS 490. Internship in Criminology. 1-6 Credit Hours.
Participation in a field learning experience closely related to one of the areas of criminology or sociology. The student intern will meet regularly with his or her supervisor in the agency and/or will report as required to the faculty member assigned to supervise the field experience. Students are expected to apply what they have learned in the academic program to the field experience. An evaluation of the field experience will also be required. The internship and placement must be approved by the instructor. Three hours of field work per week are required to generate one credit hour. The number of credits to be awarded must be contracted for prior to registration.
CJS 496. Honors Project in Criminology. 3-6 Credit Hours.
The nature of the project is determined by the mentor and the student. The due dates for each draft as well as the number of credit hours the student is to receive is contracted for prior to registration.
CJS 499. Research in Criminology. 3-6 Credit Hours.
An upper-class student who wishes to undertake a criminological research project for academic credit during a given semester must submit a research proposal prior to registration and a research report at the end of the semester. The proposal must be approved by the research director the department chair and the Dean of Arts & Sciences. The proposal will be kept on file in the Dean's office.