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Doctoral Course Descriptions

The Ph.D. in Criminal Justice requires students to complete, at minimum, 51 credit hours. Below is a complete list of courses offered in the program. Not all courses are offered every semester. For a list of required courses and advising checklist please follow this link: Ph.D. Required Courses

CJ 7301 Instructional Assistant Supervision
This course prepares doctoral students employed as teaching assistants to perform effectively in diverse instructional settings. The course provides for regular and planned opportunities for continuing evaluation of students. This course does not earn graduate degree credit.

CJ 7309 Proseminar
A course designed to introduce students to the School and ongoing research activities of its faculty. Emphasis is placed on identifying and coordinating opportunities for joint research and scholarship among faculty and students. Prerequisite: first-year criminal justice doctoral students only.

CJ 7310 Philosophy of Law, Justice, and Social Control
A current, thorough, and comprehensive review of the criminal justice system focused on how the system functions, and its current needs and future trends. Students submit extensive critiques and participate in panel discussions.

CJ 7311 Advanced Criminological Theory
An overview of the major criminological paradigms is presented focusing on the causes of crime and deviant behavior. The course includes a discussion of criminological theories from a philosophy of science perspective focusing on such issues as theory construction, theoretical integration, and the formal evaluation of theory and policy.

CJ 7313 Race and Ethnicity in Crime and Criminal Justice
An exploration of how issues related to racial and ethnic minorities and criminal behaviors impact criminal justice reactions. Topics include racial disparities related to law enforcement and sentencing, and policy implications related to policing, probation, pre-sentencing and post-release issues.

CJ 7314 Policing
This course examines current problems in American policing and the role of research in their examination and solution. Official crime and victimization statistics and measures of police performance are explained, with a focus on their collection, development, limitations, and utility. Methods and issues in policing are explored.

CJ 7315 Corrections
This course examines the history, forms, and functions of correctional institutions, their programs and policies, as well as theories of punishment. Topics include the structure and functions of prisons and jails, community corrections, intermediate sanctions, reentry, supermax prisons, and the death penalty.

CJ 7320 Quantitative Research Methods
A course that demonstrates the practical aspects of conducting criminal justice research that uses quantitative methodologies and design. Topics include the philosophy of science; research ethics; methodological designs in establishing causation; non-experimental/descriptive research; sampling techniques; secondary data sources and data gathering techniques.

CJ 7321 Linear Regression for Criminal Justice Research
Instruction on the use of advanced linear modeling techniques in criminal justice research is addressed. After completing this course, students should be able to evaluate quantitative research articles in the major criminal justice journals and be prepared to complete a major quantitative research project of their own.

CJ 7322 Advanced Research for Planning and Evaluation
An introduction to evaluation and research design methodologies, assessment techniques including modeling and case studies, agency management issues, and on-going policy implications. Course gives students an understanding of the principles and techniques commonly used to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of criminal justice interventions.

CJ 7323 Applied Statistics and Quantitative Data Analysis
This is a course in statistics and data analysis for the purposes of original quantitative research. Topics include descriptive statistics, statistical inference for single and multivariate analysis, and principles underlying the techniques. This course makes extensive use of statistics software via command-line interface. No more than elementary algebra is required.

CJ 7330 Qualitative Research Methods
A discussion of the methods and techniques used for achieving interpretable qualitative results in social research. Topics covered include ethnography, focus groups, in-depth interviewing and case studies. Students will be trained in inductive reasoning and coordinating qualitative with quantitative methods.

CJ 7331 Law and Behavioral Science
A review of the issues addressed in the application of the behavioral sciences to the criminal law system. Topics include criminal sanctions and diminished responsibility, civil commitment, victimology, psychology in the courtroom, the role of media, drugs, and alcohol to violence, and how the justice system reacts to violent offenders.

CJ 7336 Survey Research Methods for Criminal Justice
This course addresses the procedures and techniques used to create social surveys including question formulation, metrics, and question scaling. Students learn how to prepare face-to-face, telephone, and mail surveys, and are trained in sampling procedures related to survey administration.

CJ 7350A Forecasting, Trend Analysis, and Data Interpretation
A review of quantitative approaches to public policy analysis, the diverse conceptions of the goals and objectives that should be served by policy, and the appropriate role of the policy analyst. Policy consequences are traced to indirect and subtle incentives and disincentives.

CJ 7350B Academic Scholarship and Communication
A course on conducting academic research, interpreting results and how to prepare manuscripts for publication in refereed journals. Included is a survey of the audiences, topical focus, and submission requirements of the major criminal justice, criminology, and law publications, along with specialized knowledge on achieving success in the scholarship environment.

CJ 7350C Qualitative Data Collection, Coding and Analysis
This course takes a structured approach to understanding and implementing the various information collection methods used in qualitative research, including formatting the information for coding, coding schemes, and information interpretation.

CJ 7350E Discrete Multivariate Models
This course focuses on regression models for discrete outcome variables, sometimes called limited or categorical dependent variables. Topics include maximum likelihood estimation, binary and multinomial logistic models, and negative binomial models. Prerequisite: CJ 7321

CJ 7350F Environmental Criminology
Crime distributes unevenly ion space/time. As such, the course examines such questions as: (1) What places are dangerous? (2) Why do we study specific crime types? (3) Where do crime types concentrate? (4) Where do offenders go in their normal activities? (5) What are the temporal patterns for crime? Prerequisite: CJ 7311

CJ 7350G Seminar in Macro Criminology
This course has a macro focus, examining criminological theory and research that takes cities, geographical regions, states, and nations as the units of comparison. The importance and relevance of macro criminology for understanding the causes of crime and key criminal justice issues, such as police resources, are explored in depth. Prerequisite: CJ 7311

CJ 7350I Introduction to Structural Equation Modeling
The course provides an introduction to structural equation modeling, which is sometimes called mean and covariance structure analysis or latent variable analysis. Topics include recursive and non-recursive models, path analysis, measurement models, and factor analysis. Prerequisite: CJ 7321 or its equivalent or approval/permission of both the Instructor and the Doctoral Program Coordinator.

CJ 7350K Criminal Justice Forecast & Policy Analysis
This course examines the inputs and outputs of criminal justice programs. It covers forecasting methods using statistical bootstrapping techniques including line fitting methods, moving averages, cohort propagation matrixes, and systems simulations. Prerequisites: Graduate statistics and a working knowledge of Excel and SPSS.

CJ 7350L Sex Offenders: Theory, Research, and Application
This course will focus on application of theory to explain sexual offenses, research design issues related to researching this salient population of offenders (e.g., ethical issues, gaining IRB approval, research design limitations, social desirability problems in self-report data, and examining available data sources), and examining policy related issues.

CJ 7360 Independent Study
Students will work closely with a particular doctoral faculty member and develop in-depth knowledge in a specific topic area of criminal justice. Topics vary according to a student’s program needs. Repeatable once for credit with different emphasis. Approval of the Instructor and the Doctoral Program Coordinator is required.

CJ 7199 – CJ 7999 Dissertation
Original research and writing in criminal justice to be accomplished under direct supervision of the dissertation chair. While conducting dissertation research and writing, students must be continuously enrolled each long semester for dissertation hours. Graded on credit (CR), progress (PR), no-credit, (F) basis.