UW-Madison SOC 441 - Syllabus (10 pages)

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Syllabus



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Syllabus

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Pages:
10
School:
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Course:
Soc 441 - Criminology
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SOCIOLOGY 441 CRIMINOLOGY Spring 2011 Social Science 6104 Mondays and Wednesdays 4 00 5 15 pm Instructor Office No Office Hours Office Phone Email Address Cecile David Ph D 2452 Social Sciences Thursdays 10 am 12 pm or by appt 608 265 2368 cdavid ssc wisc edu Teaching Assistant Office No Email Address Discussion Sessions Robert Chiles 7110 Social Sciences rchiles ssc wisc edu MONDAYS 301 302 303 304 305 Course Description and Goals This course is an introduction to criminology the study of crime and the theoretical perspectives which explain criminal behavior and the causes of crime We will learn how crime is defined and measured and how criminal actions are classified We will examine social and psychological explanations of criminal acts and criminal behavior the social structural theories of criminal law and crime rates and the different theories regarding treatment control correctional methods and the administration of justice We will review some of the institutions that are part of the criminal justice system law enforcement correctional facilities and the legal system and how the theoretical foundations in criminology impact their systems and processes While this course focuses mainly on the United States we will conclude with a comparative study of criminological approaches and research in other countries The course is divided into three parts The first part will provide an overview of the criminal legal system and how the social construction of criminality is viewed and perpetuated by the media We then delve into the measurement of crime and researchers attempts to understand criminal behavior and actions We will evaluate how crime is defined and calculated at the local and national level and we will assess how the correlates of crime are the most common variables used in looking at the prevalence and determinants of crime criminals and victims Finally we will discuss the difficulties faced in researching crime particularly the under reporting of crime and the ethics involved in using ethnographic methods The second part of the course is a study of criminological theories that provide an understanding of the major theories of criminal involvement We will examine the basic Soc441 Page 2 intellectual orientation of each theory its history arguments central hypotheses and how each theory can be empirically tested At the end of this section students should have a strong understanding of the process by which criminal involvement emerges The third and final part of this course will examine typologies of criminal behavior and how different types of crime are categorized We will review current research that tests criminological theories and apply them to specific kinds of crimes We will then analyze societal responses to crime particularly in three institutions law enforcement and policing correctional facilities sentencing and incarceration and prosecution and the criminal legal system Finally we will finish the course with a comparative examination of social control crime data and the criminal justice systems in selected countries throughout Europe Asia and the Middle East Required Readings Crime and Criminals Contemporary and Classic Readings in Criminology by Frank R Scarpitti Amie L Nielsen and J Mitchell Miller 2nd edition 2009 Oxford University Press Criminological Theories Introduction Evaluation and Application by Ronald L Akers and Christine S Sellers 5th edition 2009 Oxford University Press Soc 441 READER required readings of selected book chapters and journal articles are posted at Learn UW The complete course packet will be available for purchase at the Social Science Copy Center 6120 SS All the required readings both textbooks and reader will be available in the Reserve Collection at the College Library Learn UW We will use the online Learn UW system for various parts of the course e g news links instructions a survey online quiz access to required readings dropbox or paper submission The gradebook however will not be enabled I do not post my lecture notes online so if you miss class you will need to borrow notes from a classmate You can access Learn UW through https learnuw wisc edu index html or www wisc edu Log in click on the Criminology link and take a few minutes to look around the site Students on the waitlist need be added to the class list by me Classroom Format The course meets twice weekly for 75 minute lectures and one 50 minute discussion section The lectures will generally be just that lectures I have also scheduled five distinguished guest speakers to make presentations to our class see the course schedule Soc441 Page 3 for the list of speakers and topics Attendance at all the lectures is required and attendance at the guest speakers presentations is MANDATORY There will be exam questions based on material presented at the lectures and the guest speakers presentations This is a full classroom and students should not engage in disruptive behavior Students who negatively impact the learning environment of their classmates will be asked to leave Do not text during lecture Do not access social media websites or surf the internet during lecture Students may think that they can text without others noticing This is not true Students may think that their texting does not distract others This is also not true As a simple matter of respect please do not text during lecture Similarly if you are using a laptop to write notes do not surf the internet or access social media websites like Facebook during lecture With a crowded classroom everybody around and behind you can see what you are doing Grading Policy Final letter grades are based on the following components and weighted percentage Online Quiz February 15th 16th One Page Paper Proposal due March 10th Midterm Exam March 28th 10 Page Mini Research Paper due April 28th Final Exam May 10th Discussion Section Participation 7 part of the research paper grade 20 35 25 13 Details of the graded components are as follows Quiz 7 There will be one timed 30 minute quiz taken online at Learn UW between February 15th and 16th The quiz will be active between 8 00 am Tuesday and 3 00 pm Wednesday The quiz will be true false multiple choice and short answer questions and will cover material from the lectures and required readings in the Intro Overview Media Measurement and Correlates sections Midterm Exam 20 The midterm exam will be administered in class on March 28th during the designated lecture period The exam will


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