Criminology – CJUS 340

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

Course Description

This course is designed to examine theories regarding the nature and cause of criminal behavior and society’s response. It approaches crime from a philosophical, psychological, and sociological perspective. Most importantly, this course strives to integrate a theological perspective to crime and punishment. (Formerly CJUS 210)


CJUS 200 and 230


The purpose of this class is to expose the student to introductory concepts in the field of criminology including: classical, positivist, Marxist, sociological, and multifactor theories of crime. These ideas will be discussed within the context of a Christian worldview.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Define the concepts of crime, law, and criminology.
  2. Trace the general development of theories of crime causation.
  3. Differentiate between current biological, social, psychological, and developmental theories of crime.
  4. Categorize crime typologies associated with violent, property, white collar, and public order crimes.
  5. Identify and evaluate the theological and Christian perspectives regarding the source of and potential solutions to criminal behavior.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

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

Christian Worldview Paper

The Christian Worldview Paper is a 2-page document outlining the student’s perception of his/her own Christian worldview as it relates to criminology. In this document (completed in current APA format), the student must explain how his/her perception of criminal behavior was formed by his/her own experience and prior biblical instruction. While the student’s perception regarding criminology may change during the course, this exercise demonstrates to the instructor that the student understands how to present a paper in current APA format.

Discussion Board Forums (3)

For each Discussion Board Forum, the student is required to post a thread of at least 300 words. For each thread (except for DB1 which is an introduction thread), the student must support his/her assertions with at least 2 citations in current APA format. Acceptable sources include peer-reviewed journal articles from Liberty University’s Online Library and other scholarly works to include volumes or books (as well as Scripture). The student must post 2 replies of at least 150 words each, incorporating at least 1 citation per reply.

Research Paper

This assignment requires the submission of 2 distinct works: a Development Proposal and the Research Paper.

Development Proposal

Using the template provided, the student will develop his/her own research proposal based on interests or topical areas highlighted in the course. This research proposal must be in the form of a hypothesis, not a question. Complete directions are on the template. The research proposal must be submitted on the provided template for approval.

Final Submission

The Research Paper will present the hypothesis, review the literature that supports or does not support the hypothesis, and form a conclusion. It is to be at least 7 pages and written in current APA format.

Exams (3)

There are 3 exams in this course. Even though the questions are in multiple-choice format, they cannot be answered by simply looking up the answers in the readings. The student must think, reflect upon, and choose the best answer based on the readings. Tests are open-book/open-note, but they may not be discussed with any person. Exams 1 and 2 each contain 40 multiple-choice questions and have a time limit of 3 hours. The Final Exam contains 100 multiple-choice questions and has a time limit of 3 hours.