Core Criminal Justice Courses
Introduction to Criminal Justice
This course introduces you to the history, organizational structure, and laws and legal procedures of criminal justice in the United States. Learn about the full spectrum of police, courts, corrections, and juvenile justice systems and processes, from criminal arrest to conviction, incarceration, and reentry into society. Readings and assignments delve into topics such as: the limitations of policework in relation to constitutional law; individual rights versus public order; criminal law; definitions and measurement of crime; plea bargaining; court trials and sentencing processes; prisons and jails; and probation, parole, and community corrections.
Introduction to Law Enforcement
Study the evolution of law enforcement agencies, the roles and purposes of police in American society, and legal issues and challenges that police officers face at work in peacekeeping, patrol, and order maintenance. In this course, you learn about criminal justice jobs and employee recruitment, hiring, and training, and gain basic managerial and leadership skills. Material covers practical information about how to develop crime reduction strategies; foster positive community relations; stop corruption; and ensure individual and organizational accountability in law enforcement.
Introduction to Corrections
Discusses the organization and functions of corrections within the criminal justice system and emphasizes the evolution of corrections for the rehabilitation of offenders. Students discuss the future of corrections with an eye toward continuing the current evolution of correctional systems in American society.
Multicultural Issues in Criminal Justice
Multiculturalism is a primary issue in society today, both in general, and more specifically, the criminal justice system. This course will focus on the diversity of cultural groups as well as cultural differences and awareness, and their impact on the criminal justice system. Views from both the role of a practitioner and from the perspective of an offender will be addressed.
Criminal Procedure and Evidence
Provides a comprehensive review and in-depth analysis of the rules of evidence and criminal procedural law in the United States. Analyzes case law which interprets the constitutional guarantees afforded the accused by the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 8th Amendments, and the admissibility of evidence in court proceedings. Particular emphasis is placed upon arrest, search and seizure, confessions and admissions, the privilege against self-incrimination, the right to counsel, the exclusionary rule and its exceptions, burden of proof, and procedural due process.
Explore the nature of crime by studying theories of the biological, social, and psychological causes of criminal behavior. Learn about criminal topologies, criminological models, and criminality such as white-collar crime, violence, property theft, and public offenses. Gain experience using multidisciplinary approaches to analyze the outcomes and effectiveness of criminal justice policies and procedures, and learn how to express crime data in ways that support specific recommendations for policy and procedural change.
Criminal Justice Administration
This course provides a comprehensive discussion of criminal justice administration through the integration of relevant theories, research findings, and the application of best practices within criminal justice organizations. Included in this course are the basic concepts of an organization, management, and the criminal justice system’s environment; issues regarding communication, motivation, leadership and job design. Additionally, the areas of group behavior and processes within criminal justice organizations regarding occupational socialization, power and political behavior, organizational conflict and effectiveness, decision-making, and change and innovation will be presented.
During this course you will investigate how research is conducted in the social sciences. You will learn research methods and techniques that you are likely to come across in your professional and personal lives. Throughout the course, you will have opportunities to apply the different research methods and techniques that you have learned. Lastly, you will leave the course with an understanding of research methods that will give you the knowledge and skills needed to gather, evaluate, and apply information and research findings.
Ethics in Criminal Justice
Examines ethical issues specifically related to the criminal justice profession. Issues include professional communications including government regulation and policy, free speech, client/victim/investigative privacy, accuracy in media and the impact of science and technology on communications.
Explores the historical development and contemporary structure of state and federal trial courts and courts of appellate review. Constitutional and statutory authority for courts, court procedures, and defendant’s rights in the judicial process are reviewed to include due process, public and speedy trial, jury composition, self-incrimination, punishment, and state and federal post-conviction relief and/or appellate review. Other statutory and administrative/regulatory laws are reviewed pertaining to the Code of Professional Responsibility as it applies to respective judicial officers. Also, analysis of the respective roles, duties performed, and career paths for judicial officers such as judges, prosecutors, and defense counsel.
Criminal Justice Capstone
In this criminal justice capstone writing-intensive course, you analyze how legislative, enforcement, judicial, and correctional agencies interface with one another. Learn how to use criminological, legal, and sociological theories to evaluate criminal justice policies and procedures, and how to solve ethical problems in the field. Written projects allow you to demonstrate your understanding of changing social demographics and contemporary court decisions that impact the criminal justice system.