Monday, October 22, 2012

Spring 2013 418/498 Course Descriptions

Below are course descriptions for CCJS special topics courses.

CCJS418A Seminar in Criminology and Criminal Justice: Deterrence
Prerequisites: CCJS 105, CCJS 200, and CCJS 300       Tu........ 4:00pm- 6:30pm
What can we do prevent people from committing crime? Hire more police? Put more people in prison? Spend more money and expand punishments? The popular concept of ‘getting tough’ on crime by increasing the severity of punishments is often championed by policy makers, elected officials and the public at large as a way to reduce crime.
In some places, the driver of the getaway car in a robbery that results in a fatality can get the death penalty even if this individual had nothing to do with the actual killing. In other cases, 14-year-old kids can receive a sentence of life without parole. The United States incarcerates more people than anywhere in the world. But is there compelling support suggesting that any of this actually deters individuals and reduces crime? For example, 36 states have expanded laws to now penalize texting while driving with a heavy fine, yet current statistics show an increase of 150% of texting while driving in the past year.
This course will focus on two key avenues to understanding how deterrence works. First, it will explore the historical development of the deterrence doctrine and the current state of evidence supporting it, including effectiveness of current forms of punishment and policies. Second, there will be a concentration on individual human behavioral tendencies and capacities to understand, operationalize sanction threats, respond to them, and ultimately be deterred by them.

CCJS418B Seminar in Criminology and Criminal Justice: Cyber Crime
Prerequisite: CCJS100, CCJS105        TuTh...... 2:00pm- 3:15pm
Cybercrime research has grown in visibility and importance during the last two decades. Nevertheless, despite the growing public interest in cybercrime and its consequences for businesses and individuals, only scant attention has been given in the criminological discipline to investigation and understanding of this new type of crime. The purpose of this course is to introduce students with the technical, social and legal aspects of cybercrime as well as expose students to theories and tools that enable scientific exploration of this phenomenon. In the first few weeks of the semester we will learn about the computer and the internet, and discuss several definitions and typologies of cybercrime. Then we will discuss the hacker, the victim and the IT manger, review various theories of crime causation, and assess the relevance of these theories in the context of cyber space. We will then describe several technical tools that allow the collection of data from the Internet. We will conclude with a discussion on the legal issues affected and created by online crime.

CCJS418G Seminar in Criminology and Criminal Justice: Analyzing Criminological Research
Prerequisites: CCJS 100, CCJS 105, CCJS 200 and CCJS 300     W......... 4:00pm- 6:30pm
418G is a new course specifically designed for students interested in sharpening their critical thinking skills and being better prepared for graduate and law school.  During this course, students will learn how to critically analyze criminology articles and evaluate criminal justice policy.  In doing so, students will improve their knowledge of theory, research methods, and data analysis.  Additionally, students will learn how to write effectively, which is a critical skill for both graduate and law school. 

CCJS418J Seminar in Criminology and Criminal Justice: Immigration and Crime
Prerequisites: CCJS100 and CCJS105        TuTh......12:30pm- 1:45pm
This course is designed to provide students with a general understanding of the foreign national-crime nexus in the United States. This class will survey major theoretical perspectives within the contemporary criminology field to provide a framework for understanding the relationship between foreign nationals and crime. In addition, this class will examine the available research and statistics on foreign nationals and crime, and the policy implications of this research. At the conclusion of this course, students will possess a working knowledge of:
1) Types of foreign nationals, and the criminality of these foreign nationals in America
2) The theories used to explain the criminality of foreign nationals
3) The limitations of the available research on foreign nationals and crime
4) The policies that have been implemented in attempt to address the foreign national-crime nexus

CCJS 498B Controversies and New Directions in Criminal Justice
Prerequisites: CCJS100 and CCJS105        M......... 4:00pm- 6:30pm
This course will introduce students to contemporary debates and emerging paradigms in the administration of criminal justice.  Topics will include controversial debates surrounding such things as Racial Profiling, 3 Strikes Laws, Juvenile Transfer, Mass Incarceration, Collateral Consequences of Imprisonment, Supermax Prisons, and Capital Punishment, along with new and emerging policy approaches such as Restorative Justice, Procedural Justice, Problem-Solving Courts, Community Policing, Privatization, and Issues in Prisoner Reentry.