- Course type: Self-paced
- Available Lessons: 109
- Average Lesson Length: 8 min
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Watch a preview:chapter 1 / lesson 1Criminology: Overview & History of the Field
Course SummaryEnrich your lesson plans and class syllabus with our engaging Introduction to Criminal Justice Syllabus Resource and Lesson Plans course. Our fun video lessons and multiple-choice quizzes can be easily adapted into lectures, tests and homework assignments that will keep your students interested.
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14 chapters in Introduction to Criminal Justice Syllabus Resource & Lesson Plans
Course Practice TestCheck your knowledge of this course with a 50-question practice test.
- Comprehensive test covering all topics
- Detailed video explanations for wrong answers
How It Works
You can use this criminal justice course as a template for designing and implementing your course. Here are the key components of the course and how you can use them:
- Chapters - Each chapter covers a unit of criminal justice, from the history of the field to types of crimes and the corrections system. Use these chapters as mile markers as you map out your course. We recommend planning to spend a week on each chapter, but you can always allocate the chapters according to the length of your specific criminal justice course.
- Lessons - Within each chapter are video lessons that further break down topics into bite-sized chunks. These lessons cover single topics like the concept of victimization or legal rights for juvenile offenders. Each one is often appropriate for a single class.
- Key Terms - Within each lesson are key terms. These are emphasized on screen and in the transcript. As you develop your syllabus, these key terms help you focus on the most important learning objectives. For example, the lesson on the U.S. criminal justice system includes key terms like investigation, arrest, magistrate, bail, Miranda rights, probable cause, closing arguments and hung jury.
As you work on your criminal justice lesson plans, save time by incorporating video lessons from this resource. Here's how:
- Introduce Topics - Your students will be in the right mindset for understanding topics like steps in the arrest process if you begin class with a short video. It can be a jumping-off point for a lecture, group activity or class discussion.
- Break Up Lectures - The video format, which often includes animation, helps students visualize topics like how the U.S. Supreme Court works and the purpose of prisons.
- Assign For Homework - Each lesson in the course, from stages of criminal trials to rights guaranteed by the First Amendment, can be assigned to your students as homework.
Each video lesson includes a complete transcript. You can utilize these transcripts in several ways:
- Lecture Notes - Do you need a guide as you plan a lecture, such as one on the ideas of Cesare Beccaria or the history and mission of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)? The transcripts cover each topic in depth, with key terms highlighted for quick reference.
- Student Reading - Perhaps you'd like your students to learn about differences in men's and women's prisons, but you don't have class time available. Assign the transcript as extra reading.
- Study Tools - When it's time for a unit exam on the role of the police department, you can point your students to the transcripts on various approaches to police work, how departments are organized, police procedures, corruption in police departments and common civil liability issues to help them study.
Each video lesson has a corresponding quiz. Here's how to use the quizzes:
- Homework - Assign a quiz to your students as homework. You'll receive an email with the results, which enables you to verify they've completed the assignment and that they've understood the material. Questions cover everything from problems with the National Crime Victimization Survey to key facts, like what occurs during pretrial activities.
- Tests - You can meld the material in the quizzes into your own student assessments, saving you valuable time. Need a few questions on categories of crimes? There are plenty!
- Discussions - Jump-start a discussion with questions like: What are some arguments for and against the use of capital punishment?
Below is a sketch of the criminal justice syllabus modeled on a 15-week course. This sample can be adapted based on your course schedule. Navigate the chapters and lessons for more detail.
|Week||Unit||Sample of Topics Covered|
|Week 1||Introduction to Crime and Criminology||Definition and history of criminology, types of crime, current trends in U.S. crimes|
|Week 2||Theories of Crime||Overview of various thoughts on criminology, including the classical school the positivist school, psychological theories and biological theories|
|Week 3||Types of Crime||A look at categories of crime, such as crimes against persons, property and morality, along with terrorism and cyber crime|
|Week 4||Victims and Victimization in Criminal Justice||The link between lifestyle and becoming a victim of crime, the duties of the Office for Victims of Crime|
|Week 5||The Criminal Justice Field||History of the justice system in the U.S., components of the justice system, social justice|
|Week 6||Criminal Justice Agencies in the U.S.||Duties of the U.S. Attorney General, federal law enforcement agencies, the criminal division of the U.S. justice department|
|Week 7||Law Enforcement in the U.S.||Facts about police work in the U.S., law enforcement agencies at various levels of government|
|Week 8||The Role of the Police Department||Policing styles, ethics, police tactics, including interrogation and use of force|
|Week 9||The U.S. Court System||Levels of courts in the U.S., jurisdiction issues, a look at the individuals in the courtroom,|
|Week 10||Constitutional Law in the U.S.||Rights provided by the first, fourth, fifth, ninth and fourteenth amendments|
|Week 11||Criminal Law in the U.S.||Origins of U.S. laws, definitions of various types of laws including criminal law, civil law and procedural law|
|Week 12||The Criminal Trial in the U.S. Justice System||Examination of the criminal trial process, Writ of Habeas Corpus, types of defenses|
|Week 13||The Sentencing Process in Criminal Justice||Goals of the criminal sentencing process, types of sentences, including structured sentences, indeterminate sentences and intermediate sanctions|
|Week 14||Corrections and Correctional Institutions||An overview of parole and probation, U.S. jails, current issues confronting the prison system|
|Week 15||The Juvenile Justice System||An overview of the juvenile corrections system, juvenile rights, alternatives to incarceration|
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