2008-2009 Justice Studies (JUST)

Requirements | Academic Major | Academic Minor | Course Descriptions

Faculty: Mike Zarkin (Chair)

Program Goals

  • Critical, analytical, and integrative thinking with respect to:
    • Evaluation of criminal justice policies
    • Understanding fundamentals of legal reasoning
    • Distinguishing between opinion and fact
    • Questioning personal beliefs in light of information
  • Creative and reflective capacities
    • Understand the types of research employed in criminal justice
    • Design a research project/policy analysis study in the justice field
    • Understand critical issues facing the criminal justice system in the next decade
    • Understand how issues and changes in one component influence other areas of the criminal justice system
  • Leadership, collaboration, and teamwork
    • Demonstrate planning, time management, and prioritization of activities within group projects.
    • Demonstrate adaptability within group settings (including recognizing and overcoming deficiencies)
  • Writing and other communication skills
    • Make effective presentations of readings and arguments in class
    • Demonstrate effective listening in personal and group environments
    • Present original findings of research, theory, or policy analysis
    • Demonstrate proper use of citation, grammar, and syntax
  • Global consciousness, social responsibility, and ethical awareness
    • Question personal beliefs in light of information
    • Draw linkages between theories of justice and relate them to real world issues
    • Understand critical differences between American and international criminal justice issues and systems

Program Objectives

The cornerstones of the academic enterprise of justice studies are the capacity for critical thinking and effective communications. Justice Studies provides students with skills to effectively practice, think about, and contribute to the work of criminal and social justice, students must be prepared for challenges of justice at the national and international levels. The Justice Studies program accordingly locates its curricula within a broad-based liberal arts education, grounded in the principle that equal portions of its classes shall focus on American and international criminal justice. Students completing the degree program in Justice Studies will have been introduced to the core knowledge that describes the field, and will also have been acquainted with the cultural, social, political, ethical, and psychological contexts from which issues of justice emerge. Justice Studies is a writing-intensive program at Westminster College.

Program Requirements

The Justice Studies program offers a Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies as an academic major and provides for an academic minor in Justice Studies. The Justice Studies academic major requires completion of 67 semester hours of credit selected from Justice Studies coursework and related classes in the social sciences and selected other coursework. Thirty-two of those hours must be in Justice Studies and related courses numbered 300 or above. Students must maintain a cumulative 2.5 GPA or better in the academic major and minor.

For course prerequisites, please refer to the course description.

Academic Major

Liberal Education Courses

Credit Hours

The following courses, which fulfill LE requirements, are required for the Justice Studies major.

MATH 150 Elementary Statistics, LE
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE




4
3


Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Foreign Language Requirement

8

Justice Studies majors must complete eight credit hours in a single foreign language (Spanish recommended).

8

II.

Lower Division Courses

16

JUST 101 Introduction to Justice Studies, LE
JUST 110 Police and Society (formerly JUST 201)
JUST 220 American Judicial Process
JUST 230 Corrections

4
4
4
4

III.

Upper Division Courses

16

  JUST 301 Criminological Theories
JUST 350 Criminal Law
JUST 440 Internship
JUST 498 Thesis I
JUST 499 Thesis II

4
4
4
2
2

IV.

Electives

16

Sixteen upper division credit hours from justice studies or justice studies-related coursework approved by the justice studies faculty. Justice studies related-coursework may be drawn from: Anthropology, Communication, Gender Studies, History, Philosophy, Political Studies, Psychology, Religious Studies, or Sociology.

16

V.

Required Courses from Other Programs

11

MATH 150 Elementary Statistics, LE
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE

PSYC/SOC 390 Quantitative Research Methods (4)
or
SOC 391 Qualitative Research Methods (4)

4
3

4


TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MAJOR

67

Academic Minor

To fulfill the requirements for an academic minor in Justice Studies, students must complete a minimum of 20 semester hours in Justice Studies or related coursework. Twelve of these hours must be in coursework numbered 300 or above.

Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

12

JUST 101 Introduction to Justice Studies, LE
JUST 110 Police and Society (formerly JUST 201)
JUST 350 Criminal Law

4
4
4

II.

Electives

8

Additional Justice Studies or related coursework (numbered 300 or above)

8

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MINOR

20

Justice Studies Related Coursework

ANTH 355 Indian Peoples in the United States
COMM 310 Professional Writing
COMM 360 Race, Gender, Class and the Media
PHIL 206 Introduction to Ethics (required for the major)
PLSC 303 Public Administration and Bureaucracy
PLSC 355 Constitutional Law
PSYC 301 Child Development
PSYC 305 Adolescent Development
PSYC 316 Social Psychology
PSYC 362 Abnormal Psychology
SOC 305 Contemporary Issues
SOC 350 Gender in Society
SOC 372 Race, Ethnicity, and Class