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B.S. in Criminal Justice: Curriculum

Curriculum Details

120 total credits required

In Greenville University’s 100% online B.S. in Criminal Justice program, you will gain a deep understanding of social processes, criminal behavior, and the modern criminal justice system. You will also develop skills in problem-solving, decision-making, leadership, and ethical practice.

This program consists of 39 major credits. In addition to courses required for the major, you will need to complete general education and elective courses for a total of 120 credits. Your criminal justice classes online will be 8 weeks in length.

Our integrated curriculum combines theoretical knowledge with hands-on practicum learning and field opportunities. As you complete your criminal justice classes online, you will learn from experts and prepare for the next step in your career. After you graduate, you may also pursue further education in law school or other related fields.

Required Courses

An advanced survey course focusing on the description and interrelationships of the many agencies and institutions which comprise criminal justice (e.g., justice systems, law enforcement, corrections, etc.) Agencies and institutions will be studied in their historical and social contexts and will be further examined by way.

This course helps students to recognize the importance of the criminal justice system and community working cooperatively toward a more successful criminal justice system. Moving toward community trust of, and cooperation with, the criminal justice system will aid in the overall success of the criminal justice system in working toward safe and inclusive communities. Some topics that will be covered include community policing philosophy, applications, issues, types, and contemporary research. The course will also consider different community policing models. This course will include a $50 course fee for a travel component where students are able to see an example of a community policing model when the course is taught face to face.

This course covers the purpose and value of research as a problem-solving tool in criminal justice. Students will learn to form testable hypotheses, create questionnaires, gather and analyze data, and to read research articles with critical understanding.

This course will introduce students to ethics and how it applies to, and is applied within, criminal justice. This course will explore and analyze ethical dilemmas. This course will consider the roles of individuals and professional organizations and agencies when confronted with ethical dilemmas. Additionally, this course will discuss ethics in community relations, ethics in criminal justice laws, the philosophy of punishment, and procedures and civil liability in law enforcement and correctional environments. Finally, this course will explore the standards and codes of professional responsibility in criminal justice professions (e.g., Law Enforcement Code of Ethics, ABA Standards of Professional Responsibility, American Jail Association Code of Ethics for Jail Officers, and the American Correctional Association Code of Ethics.)

Effective law enforcement requires an understanding of human behavior, deviant or otherwise. Emile Durkheim, a famous early sociologist, even went so far as to say that deviance, or breaking societal rules for behavior, is normal, and occurs in every human community. Thus an understanding of deviance begins with an understanding of human behavior, period. You will study the topic of human behavior — both conforming behavior and deviant behavior — take a diagnostic tool to identify your own personality traits, and learn to apply individual differences to human interactions and organizations. You will study and seek to understand the historical and societal context for deviance, theories or deviance, and social control mechanisms, from social scientific perspectives, but also from a Christian perspective which sees all human beings with worth, dignity, and potential.

A course designed to investigate delinquency, including juvenile deviance and juvenile crime. Applicable theories and models of delinquency will be investigated, as will social construction of delinquency. The course is appropriate for the students focusing on criminal justice generally as well as social work. Professional implications will also be examined.

The study of a variety of social organizations and of the policies enacted or pursued related to mission, structure, and social work and criminal justice will be included. Using organizational theory and real-life models, students will engage in institutional problem-solving exercises.

Each student must successfully complete one or more practicum experiences totaling 3-9 hours of academic credit, where 40 clock hours on location equals one hour of credit. Ideally, each practicum should be based on a criminal justice related agency (court, probation office, correctional facility, local police station or sheriff’s department, etc.), which specializes in some aspect of the criminal justice system. However, agencies or practices that heavily intersect with the criminal justice system or some aspect of the criminal justice system will also be considered. Ideally, an on-site supervisor with an appropriate degree or license will supervise the student’s practicum.

A basic course introducing the student to the concepts, theories, and methods employed in an objective scientific analysis of society, culture, social institutions and organizations, social control, deviancy, and social factors involved in personality development.

Course content focuses upon basic concepts and operations in descriptive and inferential statistics. The areas of study will include measures of central tendency and dispersion; probability, correlation, and regression analysis; and parametric (t-tests and ANOVA) and non-parametric (chi-square) tests of significance. A basic introduction to Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software is provided.

Choose two of the following:

This course is an introduction to the world of crime scene investigation and forensic criminolistics. Students will learn from actual cases and hear lectures from lead investigators and science of crime scene investigation.

This course is an introduction to the study of criminal law in the United States and does not cover any specific federal or state law. Topics include the reliance of U.S. law on the Constitution and peripherally on the Declaration of Independence, the relationship of criminal law to civil law, U.S. criminal law and its relation to British common law, principles of criminal law, principles of criminal liability, complicity, inchoate crimes, defenses, justifications and excuses, crimes against persons, crimes against property, crimes against public order, and crimes against the state.

It is the goal of this course to develop a greater understanding of the complexities of the law enforcement function, its intricacies, and its diversity. This will be done through a thoughtful consideration of the structure and functions of law enforcement and through exploring the topics of police and police functions.

This class will introduce students to a critical study of corrections — the institutionalized system through which society incarcerates or otherwise punishes and supervisors individuals identified as criminals. The course will consider the correctional system, with particular attention to the social forces that shape and are shaped by corrections. The course will focus on models and trends in corrections with application for both understanding society and preparation for practice.

Choose one of the following:

This course will provide an overview of the history and application of law enforcement and intelligence. Moreover, the course will review the numerous challenges presented to officials in the law enforcement and intelligence communities. Topics include the integration of intelligence and policing within the community, the development of the intelligence cycle, structure, and the application of legal and ethical parameters to intelligence work. The student will develop critical thinking skills and an understanding of intelligence work at the operational, tactical, and strategic levels.

This course will provide an overview of vice and narcotics crimes. These crimes deal with issues which are policed based on their moral ramifications. This study will examine how certain behaviors become taboo by cultural standards, how they are criminalized, and what happens to those who are convicted of such crimes. During the course, students will learn about how police agencies attempt to mitigate threats to the United States.

In this course, students will learn what is required to provide ethical and effective leadership within a law enforcement agency while building trust between citizens and police officers. The course will examine various policing strategies and the advantages and disadvantages of each strategy. You will also learn about the basic administrative responsibilities required of any law enforcement agency including planning, budgeting, organizational design, and assessment. We will also examine the important area of human resource management concerning the recruiting and hiring of personnel. Lastly, you will come to understand the concepts and principles that are essential in leading others in a way that inspires them to want to follow you.

This course will provide an overview of the structure and development of the homeland security network of the United States. This study will examine the dominant Intelligence Community position in this structure but will also address some of the law enforcement components which further support the system. During the course, students will learn about the roles of member agencies and how they mitigate threats to the United States.

This course presents an introduction to social psychology by exploring theories and research related to social perceptions, social influence, and social relations. Major topics to be covered in the course include, but are not limited to, social influence processes, interpersonal attraction, group behavior, aggression, conformity, and attitude formation and change. Students will further explore these topics by designing and conducting a social psychological research project.

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