Criminal Justice Research and Writing – CJUS 230

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course is an introductory course to research in the social sciences, both in traditional and online venues. It covers plagiarism, APA formatting, case briefing, academic writing, formal reporting, and memoranda. A major research paper is required.




The purpose of this course is to assist the student in becoming a competent writer and researcher.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Research a topic in criminal justice thoroughly by utilizing resources found in the Jerry Falwell Library and online.
  2. Prepare a research paper in proper current APA formatting.
  3. Write clearly, concisely, and persuasively.
  4. Prepare a formal police report and a case brief.
  5. Articulate basic Christian concepts regarding communication, integrity in writing, and plagiarism.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations/notes

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (2)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student must create a thread of 300–500 words in response to the provided prompt for each forum. In addition to the thread, the student must post a 150–300-word reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. In both the thread and replies, the student must support his/her assertions with at least 1 reference from the Reading & Study materials and 1 biblical citation. Responses must also support the major points with examples, biblical principles, and thoughtful analysis. All citations must use current APA formatting.

Research Project

The student will complete a 3-part Research Project designed for him/her to become familiar with a specific crimnial justice topic he/she has not formerly researched. Because thorough research and concise phrasing are paramount for professionals in the criminal justice field, the project must have a limited scope of discussion.

Thesis Statement

The student will select a criminal justice topic of his/her choosing about which he/she has not written on previously. The student will create a Thesis Statement for the Final Research Paper. The Thesis Statement must be narrowly focused, no longer than 2 sentences, and present 2–3 major points to be covered in the 4–6-page paper.

Annotated Outline

The student will submit an Annotated Outline of the Final Research Paper. The Annotated Outline must use current APA formatting. The Annotated Outline must contain the following: Thesis Statement, at least 3 main headings, and a Reference Page. The 3 main points must be supported with at least 2 subpoints each. The subpoints must each be 3–5 sentences and be accompanied by at least 1 citation each. One of the three main headings and its subsequent subpoints must incorporate a biblical worldview. The Annotated Outline must also include a Reference Page in current APA format that includes 5 academic resources published within the last five years.

Final Research Paper

The student will submit the Final Research Paper. The Final Research Paper must include the following elements: Title Page, Abstract, Body (including an Introduction, Body Paragraphs/Argument Section, and Conclusion), and Reference Page. The Final Research Paper must develop an argument that is highlighted in the thesis and supported with solid academic research, biblical principles, and analysis. It must be written in current APA format, and the body of the paper must have 4–6 pages of content. The Title Page, Abstract, and Reference Page are not included in the page count. The Final Research Paper must include at least 5 scholarly resources published within the last 5 years as well as biblical references.

Investigation Project

The student will investigate a crime using interviews and crime scene photos provided in the course. This project will be completed in the following parts:

Suspect Sheet and Property Sheet

The student will complete the Suspect Sheet and Property Sheet based upon the information provided.

Incident Report and Narrative Summary

The student will complete the report form (incident report and victim sheet) based on the information provided in the course. Additionally, the student will submit a 1–2-page narrative summary providing details in an objective manner. The narrative summary must be in current APA formatting.

Case Brief

The student will complete a 1–2-page Case Brief based on the assigned judicial opinion provided in the course. The Case Brief must include the following sections: Caption, Facts, Procedural History, Issue, Rule of Law, Holding, and Rationale.

Video Response Quiz

The quiz will cover a video provided in the quiz. This quiz will contain 5 multiple-choice questions and have a 25-minute time limit.

Quizzes (3)

Each quiz will cover the Reading & Study material for the module/week in which it is assigned. The quizzes will be open-book/open-notes. Quiz 1 will contain 20 multiple-choice questions and have a 45-minute time limit. Quizzes 2 and 3 will each contain 10 multiple-choice and true/false questions and have a 20-minute time limit.