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Criminal Justice Course Descriptions

Criminal Justice Courses

CRIM 200 – Introduction to Criminal Justice (3 cr): This course will provide an overview of the criminal justice system, its history, its philosophical development, and its contemporary configurations. Issues of law enforcement, adjudication, and corrections will be covered. Students will examine career opportunities and requirements in the criminal justice field and will become familiar with local, state, and national criminal justice systems.

CRIM 310 – Principles of Criminal Law (3 cr): This course explores the nature, origins, and general principles of criminal law. It examines pertinent aspects of federal and state criminal law, and concentrates on specific issues of interest to law enforcement including an examination of procedural law. Recent court decisions will de discussed and selected criminal offenses will be analyzed.

CRIM 311 – Criminal Justice Procedures (3 cr): Constitutional analysis of criminal procedure that focuses primarily on the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments; the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, the privilege against self-incrimination, and the right to counsel. The course examines the need to protect the public and enhance law enforcement efficiency and the need to protect individual defendants from abuse at the hands of the state.

CRIM 315 – Criminal Investigation (3 cr): This course examines the fundamental principles of criminal investigation with concentration on the following areas—report writing; sources of information including witnesses, complainants, victims, observation, physical description, identification, interviews, interrogation, modus operandi, informants, surveillance, and undercover techniques; crime scene search, collection, preservation, and processing of physical evidence; and raids, arrests, search, seizure, and case preparation.

CRIM 320 – Criminal Court System (3 cr): This course will focus on the jurisdiction policies and procedures of criminal courts in the administration of justice. The role of the courts is pursued in determining social policy as it relates to criminology. Also, a complete survey of the criminal court system from local to state to federal jurisdiction will be taken.

CRIM 325 – Corrections (3 cr): This course provides a general overview of the American corrections system and a survey of today’s most pressing correctional problems.  The philosophy of punishment will be extensively discussed, and major emphases will be on the nature of the prison experience, alternatives to incarceration, judicial intervention into correctional affairs, and the controversy concerning the effectiveness of rehabilitation programs.

CRIM 330 – The Juvenile Justice System (3 cr): This course provides an in-depth examination of the philosophic, economic, political, and social factors leading to the establishment of the juvenile justice system in the United States.  Crime patterns of youth, police-juvenile relations, and correctional practices for juveniles are sample topics.

CRIM 340 – Treatment and Rehabilitation (3 cr): This course provides an in-depth examination of legal and social agencies aiding in the treatment of the offender, including the rise of specialty courts in the United States. A survey of treatment theories that influence and alter the attitudes, values, and behaviors of inmates and those recently released from correctional institutions are other topics.

CRIM 410 – Prosecution and Defense (3 cr): Behavioral and legal analysis of the stages and procedures of a criminal case including initial appearance, bail, preliminary hearing, grand jury, arraignment, suppression hearings, trial, and sentencing. Emphasis is on bail reform, plea bargaining, screening, diversion, speedy trial, insanity defense, discovery, and the role of the defense attorney, prosecutor, and judge. Included is an examination of the court system as a social institution of human actors who exercise extensive discretion within the boundaries of the law.

CRIM 420 – Victimology (3 cr): This course will provide an overview of the programs within the criminal justice system which work with victims of crime and their families. Programs for the families of the offenders also will be studied. This overview will discuss the interrelationships between the various parts of the system concerning victims, legislators, lawyers, courts, jails, and prisons. The reporting of crimes of victims also is included.

CRIM 425 – Policing (3 cr): This course provides an overview of the history of policing in the United States, the functions of the police in modern society, and how those functions have evolved and continue to evolve in light of political, economic, and technological developments.  An emphasis is placed on analysis of contemporary research as well as classical analyses of police behavior.

CRIM 430 – Police Organization and Management (3 cr): This course provides a broad understanding of the various aspects of police organizations and management. The various philosophies of policing, police organizations and management, and the role of police officers are discussed from political, cultural, and historical perspectives. The central objective of the course is to familiarize the student with the various criminal investigations techniques and crime control strategies within the framework of the American legal system.

CRIM 440 – Probation and Parole (3 cr): This course examines the history, objectives, performance, and future of the full range of probation, parole, intermediate sanctions, and community corrections services viewed as integral parts of the formal criminal justice process. Research and policy developments, training and personnel issues, what works with different classes of offenders (including juveniles), the pre-sentence investigation/reporting system, sentencing and incarceration, recidivism rates, legal issues, public perceptions, and trends within the system are among the topics covered.