Delinquency and Crime Prevention – CJUS 323

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/27/2021

Course Description

Explores various strategies for prevention of adult and juvenile crime with particular attention to the theoretical and empirical bases for these approaches. Students will develop a crime prevention plan.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


Almost everyone in the field of juvenile justice feels that much more can be done to control delinquency. Yet, the questions are often asked: How can delinquency be controlled or prevented? What is currently being done to control delinquency? To what extent do these agencies violate the rights of individuals and groups in their efforts to control delinquency? How effective are these agencies and what can they do to be more effective? In order to answer some of these questions, more questions need to be asked such as what is probably the most frequently asked question about delinquency: What causes juveniles to break the law? The four major sociological theories or explanations of delinquency will be examined: strain, social learning, control, and labeling theories. This requires that research is explored which examines the extent to which delinquency is caused by individual traits (e.g., low intelligence, negative emotionality), family factors (e.g., broken homes, poor discipline), school factors, delinquent peer groups and gangs, and other factors. The role of different social and criminal justice agencies—such as the media, school, neighborhood and police—in crime and delinquency prevention will be addressed. Successful prevention initiatives employed in other countries will also be examined in this course.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify key legal issues relevant to crime prevention.
  2. Identify key ethical issues relevant to crime prevention.
  3. Examine the various approaches of crime prevention.
  4. Explain the legal and ethical complexities in crime prevention.
  5. Justify legal and ethical decisions pertaining to discussions of crime prevention.
  6. Integrate biblical truths regarding an assessment of legal and ethical perspectives in crime prevention.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

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 (4)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to create a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be 500–700 words with at least 2 citations in current APA format to support the student’s opinions and assertions on the topic. The student will then reply to at least 2 other classmates in at least 200–300 words. The thread and 2 replies must be in current APA format.

Article Review

The student will select a peer-reviewed journal article that assesses a crime prevention program or method. If there is a particular crime prevention method discussed in the text that interests the student, he/she is encouraged to choose an article related to this topic. The student will read the article and write a 2-page review that includes a brief description of what the article addresses, a summary of what the article is trying to accomplish (what hypothesis the article is testing), the major findings of the article, and whether the findings show that the hypothesis is correct, incorrect, or inconclusive. The assignment must follow current APA format.

Policy Proposal Project

The purpose of this project is to analyze all the methods of crime prevention reviewed in this course and design a policy proposal that will holistically address crime. The paper must be 3–5 pages and include a title page, in-text citations, and a reference section at the end of the paper using current APA format. The crime prevention policy proposal must come from a biblical perspective incorporated throughout the paper, rather than simply citing Scripture references at the end.

Reflection Paper

The purpose of this paper is to present a well-articulated perspective based on the selected crime prevention programs described in the course text. The 3–5-page paper must include 5–10 sources, a title page, and a reference section. The student must support the assertions made in the paper with proper in-text citations in current APA format and include the reference section at the end of the paper. Academic peer-reviewed journal articles, relevant news articles, the course textbook, and the Bible are all appropriate sources.

Exams (2)

Exam 1 will cover material from Modules/Weeks 1–4 and contain 10 short-answer questions. Exam 2 will cover material from Modules/Weeks 5–8 and contain 10 multiple-choice and true/false questions. Each exam will be open-book/open-notes (but the student cannot collaborate with anyone) and have a 2-hour time limit.