This course focuses upon contemporary topics and trends in the criminal justice arena. Topics will include: substantive and procedural changes in criminal law from a federal perspective utilizing case law, professional law enforcement organization reviews, and law review articles. Additionally, the course will identify and evaluate research trends of the National Institute of Justice, i.e., corrections, technology development, homeland security, and white collar/financial crime.
For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.
The specialization in Criminal Justice Administration will prepare this student who has been immersed in a Christian worldview throughout his/her MBA or Human Services program to work in the Criminal Justice Administration field, perform strategic planning, and make informed Criminal Justice Administration decisions. This aligns with the mission of Liberty University; “To develop Christ-centered men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential to impact tomorrow’s world.”
This course, CJUS 550, Topics and Trends in Criminal Justice, is intended to provide the student with the opportunity to identify recurring topics and developing trends in the criminal justice arena. Thereafter, the student will be required to evaluate the relevancy, practicality, cost, sustainability, and longevity of proposed solutions for the selected subfield.
Measurable Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Articulate the fundamental structure, function, and interaction of key institutions in the criminal justice system.
- Compare and contrast theoretical material from the Criminal Justice and Criminology academic literature base with real-world application in the field of Criminal Justice and Criminology.
- Evaluate recent trends in criminal justice research and identify the current philosophies and practices propelling the research.
- Explain how he/she will integrate his/her Christian worldview within the context of a criminal justice vocation.
Textbook readings, lecture presentations, and articles
Course Requirements Checklist
After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.
Students will participate in four (4) Discussions. Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will post an original thread of 400 words or more. Three (3) sources are required for the original thread. Then, the student must reply to at least two (2) peers’ threads in 250 words or more. Two (2) additional sources are required for each reply.
Research Paper: Thesis Statement and Annotated Bibliography Assignment
During this course, the student will compose an original 10–12-page Research Paper: Literature Analysis Assignment on a current topic or trend in criminal justice closely associated with a certain or specific problem in the profession or discipline today. In preparation for this paper, each student will submit a Research Paper: Thesis Statement and Annotated Bibliography Assignment. This paper must cite at least six (6) scholarly resources that are significant to the topic (current, relevant, credible, and each carries its weight) with a clear and meaningful connection between all the resources.
Research Paper: Biblical Worldview Assignment
For the Research Paper: Biblical Worldview Assignment, the student will write a short essay that critically examines the literature review and constructively identifies the gaps and omissions in the literature where a biblical worldview should be internalized and expressed in the life of the criminal justice professional. The paper must be at least four pages. The student make the distinction of where and on what grounds the literature comes up short as it relates to what the research states versus what God has for his people. The student must demonstrate how he/she might integrate the biblical worldview into the problem that he/she is studying. The paper must properly follow current APA style. If a student is struggling with current APA format, please refer to the LUO Writing Center for assistance.
Research Paper: Literature Analysis Assignment
The student will write a 10–12-page Research Paper: Literature Analysis Assignment on a specific problem in criminal justice. It should not be a descriptive paper but one that critically examines the problems and the competing solutions. The student should make an argument if need be. The paper must utilize at least 12 significant, scholarly resources that are significant to the topic (current, relevant, credible, and each carries its weight) with a clear and meaningful connection between all the resources. The student may not cut and paste portions of previously submitted material from the first two assignments. The paper must properly follow current APA style. If a student is struggling with current APA format, please refer to the LUO Writing Center for assistance.
The student will have three (3) tests during this course. Each quiz will be composed of 25 true/false, multiple-choice, and essay questions and will have a 1-hour time limit.