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CJ 450 Senior Seminar in Criminal Justice
Larkins, Douglas R.

Course Title: CJ 450 Senior Seminar in Criminal Justice

Instructor: Doug Larkins


10 January – 06 March 2005

Class Time: Saturday at 0900 am

Course Description:
You will be exploring a current issue and trend in criminal justice with emphasis on individual research and discussion. You will be required to prepare, submit and defend a senior thesis. Successful completion of the thesis is mandatory. This course will satisfy the EN 306 requirements for Criminal Justice majors. Prerequisites: EN105, EN106, passing the WCT and senior standing.

Goals of this Course:

1. To coach the student in the basic preparation techniques necessary to fulfill the requirements of a term paper, theses or dissertation.

2. The show the student the differences in preparation, research and subject development between term papers, theses and dissertations.

Learning Objectives:

1. After completing this course, you will be able to demonstrate your knowledge of Course Goal #1 through written preparation of a senior thesis.

2. After completing this course, you will be able to demonstrate your knowledge of Course Goal #2, also through written preparation of a senior thesis.

Course Arrangements:

Lecture and individual preparation

Course Requirements:

You are responsible for reading all assignments and research for paper preparation. You are responsible for obtaining information regarding assignments made during any absences.


Suggested textbooks are:

1. A Manual for Writers, Sixth Edition, by Kate L. Turabian; University of Chicago Press, Chicago 60637.

2. The Criminal Justice student Writers Manual by William A Johnson, Jr., Richard P. Rettig, Greg M. Scott and Stephen M. Garrison, Second Edition, Prentice Hall Publishing.

Class Policies, Participation and Attendance:

Class participation is expected. You are expected to come to all classes and be on time. Roll will be taken at each class meeting. Classes missed for legitimate reasons, (e.g. illness, TDY) are excusable; however, the student is expected to make up the missed class work. Three unexcused absences are excessive and will be reported to the Military Resident Center Administrator. TDY orders may be given to the instructor or turned in to the school office.

Academic Honesty:

If determined, by the instructor, that academic dishonesty has occurred in any part of the course; the student or students involved will normally be given an immediate grade of “F” and dropped from the course. The second violation results in automatic expulsion from the school. The Associate Dean will be notified, in writing of the action taken.

Required Literacy’s:

1. Critical Literacy:

A student with critical literacy will be able to gather, evaluate and communicate information effectively; meet the basic computing demands of contemporary life; know standards of excellence; recognize varieties of problem-solving strategies; and be able to contribute to desirable changes or help preserve and transmit fundamental knowledge for the good of society.

a. Achieved by: Researching and preparing a required term paper and by participating in classroom discussions and case studies.

2. Civic Literacy:

A student with civic literacy will be able to see the complexity of social, political, and economic systems and problems on the national and international scene, and then develop ways that would contribute to the solution of such problems through effective citizenship participation.

a. Achieved by: Instructor guided discussions of required textbook chapters and organized discussions and debates.

Senior Thesis:

The research paper will be on a subject to be agreed upon between student and instructor. Possible topics will be discussed the first night of class. Subjects will be approved and finalized by the second class meeting. The paper will be a minimum of 30 pages, not including the cover or reference page. Each week the student will prepare and turn in that portion of the paper as discussed by Instructor and student. Each week that material will be graded on the terms as listed below. The student will present an oral discussion of the material turned in each week and this discussion will be a portion of the final paper grade.

Grading Policy:

The final course grade will be determined using the following measurements:

Term Paper 100%
A= 90% and over
B= 80% to 89%
C= 70% to 79%
D= 60% to 69%
F= below 60% (or 3 or more unexcused

The paper processing will be as follows:

1. The paper will be divided into six (6) sections.

2. One section will be turned in to the instructor each week and graded according to the criteria listed below.

1. Section Format Form
2. Section Overview and Introduction
3. Section Related Research Materials
4. Section Significance compared to overall Issue
5. Section Oral Discussion of Research
6. Section Data Collection Techniques
7. Section Conclusion Preparation and content
8. Section Grammar and Punctuation
9. Section Bibliography Quantity and Quality

3. The section will be returned the following week with corrections and suggestions noted for the student.

4. Each section will be graded using the following criteria.

Section 1 18 points
Section 2 18 points
Section 3 18 points
Section 4 18 points
Section 5 18 points
Section 6 10 points

5. The following week, the student is required to return

A. the graded section (returned the previous week)

B. the corrected copy of that particular section

C. the next section for instructor review.

6. If any of the above listed criteria are not accomplished, additional points will be deducted from the students overall score.

Class Meeting and Examination Schedule:
Each class session, you will be required to discuss all reading assignments. Drafts and draft presentations will be conducted throughout the semester. A Final presentation will be given at the completion of the course.