Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology
The Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology provides a comprehensive examination of justice, crime, and the law. Our classes foster a broad understanding of the nature of justice, crime, and the law, in addition to the social, political, legal, philosophic, and historical context in which questions of justice are addressed, both in the United States and around the world. Students are expected to develop not only knowledge but a commitment to public service, ethical consciousness, and leadership abilities. Through the course work in Criminal Justice and Criminology, students are equipped to become proficient writers, critical and independent thinkers, and effective communicators. Graduates of the Department are prepared for graduate school, law school, and professions within the criminal justice system.
The Department recognizes that the issues of crime and justice are complex, controversial topics that are open to different interpretations. As such, we are committed to an open intellectual environment that encourages teaching, scholarship, and discussion from a diversity of theoretical perspectives and research methodologies. The curriculum of the Department reflects these values by offering a broad foundation of courses drawing on criminal justice, criminology, political science, sociology, public administration, and the law. The curriculum integrates these approaches to provide an understanding of the challenges of achieving justice in a complex society.
Students completing the B.S. degree in Criminal Justice & Criminology will be able to demonstrate the following abilities:
- Evaluate the merits of competing theoretical perspectives used to explain the nature of crime and demonstrate an ability to apply criminological theories to specific types of crime;
- Demonstrate an ability to apply ethical principles to criminal justice issues, policies, and practices, and evaluate their implications;
- Explain the criminal justice process, the role of discretion among criminal justice actors, and evaluate best practices;
- Compare and contrast the United States criminal justice system with that of other nations with an understanding of historical and cultural contexts;
- Evaluate the historical, political, and social contexts and empirical support for a particular criminal justice policy area;
- Demonstrate an understanding of the research process by both conducting original research and analyzing existing data.