Course Title: Criminology

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2010

Course Code: JUST5150

Course Title: Criminology

School: 365T Global Studies, Soc Sci & Plng

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6077 - Advanced Diploma of Justice

Course Contact : Michelle Noon

Course Contact Phone: 9925 4581

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Irene Pagliarella 99254581

Nominal Hours: 68

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

VBQU369 Apply Research Techniques within a Justice Framework

Course Description

The aim of this course is to introduce students to the study of crime, substantive areas of offending behaviour, and the implications of criminological knowledge for policy formulation and crime prevention strategy.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

VBQM391 Criminology

Learning Outcomes

This course aims to enable students to:

  1. Describe the broad nature of crime and criminology and demonstrate the linkages between theory and policy
  2. Demonstrate understanding of the historical evolution of criminology, showing ideological changes and similarities in approaches to crime, from early civilisation to contemporary times
  3. Analyse the nature, extent and patterns of crime, in Australia and globally
  4. Evaluate the validity of official crime statistics
  5. Demonstrate an understanding of the causes of crime
  6. Analyse the role of criminal profiling and its relevance to criminal investigation
  7. Demonstrate understanding of the major forms of criminal behaviour, their known patterns and correlates, and specify the measures designed to prevent or contain them
  8. Explain the rise of victimology as a major focus of study, and the importance of the victim’s role in the criminal process

Details of Learning Activities

Students will participate in a variety of teaching methods including: lectures, tutorials, class discussion, seminar presentations, group/individual work on projects, audio-visual presentations, field excursions where applicable, on site visits, and interaction with individuals and groups within the criminal justice area

Teaching Schedule

Week One: Introduction and Overview of Subject

Week Two: Historical Evolution of Criminology

Week Three: Crime Statistics and their Meaning

Week Four: Exam

Week Five: Causes of Crime 1-Trait Theory

Weeks Six and Seven: Easter/Semester Break

Week Eight: Causes of Crime 2-Strain Theory

Week Nine: Feminist Criminology

Week Ten: Labelling and Conflict Theories

Week Eleven: Profiling

Week Twelve: Violent Crime and Victimology

Week Thirteen: Property Crime

Week Fourteen: Public Order Crime

Week Fifteen:.Exam

Week Sixteen:. Overview and Evaluation

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Hayes, H & Prenzler, T. (2009). An Introduction to Crime and Criminology ed. 2: NSW: Pearson Education Australia.


*Anthony, T. & Cunneen, C. (2008). The Critical Criminology Companion. Sydney, NSW: Hawkins Press
*Burke, R.J. (2005). An Introduction to Criminological Theory ed. 2: Oregan, USA: Willan
Conklin, J.E. (2007). Criminology (9th ed.). Boston, USA: Pearson
Goldsmith, A., Israel, M & Daly, K. (Eds.). (2006). Crime and Justice: A Guide to Criminology (3rd ed.). Sydney, NSW: Law Book Co.
Graycar, A. & Grabosky, P. (2002). The Cambridge Handbook of Australian Criminology. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Howitt, D. (2002). Forensic and Criminal Psychology. Harlow, UK: Pearson/Prentice Hall
Jones, S. (2006). Criminology (3rd ed.). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press
Reid, S.T. (2003). Crime and Criminology. (10th ed.). Florida, USA: McGraw Hill
Hagan, F.E. (2002). Introduction to Criminology: Theories, Methods and Criminal Behaviour (5th ed). Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth
Marshall, Douglas and McDonnell (2007). DeviAnce and Social Control. Sth Melb: OUP
*Newburn, T. (ed). (2009). Key Readings in Criminology. Willan:UK
*Siegel, L.J. (2005). Criminology: The Core (3nd ed.) Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth.
Siegel, L.J. (2007). Criminology: Theories, Patterns and Typologies (9th ed). Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth
Treadwell, J. (2006). Criminology. London, UK: Sage
*Veysey, B. (ed.). (2009). How Offenders Transform Their Lives. Willan Publishing, UK
White, R. & Haines, F. (2004). Crime and Criminology: An Introduction (3rd ed.). Sth Melb: Oxford University Press.
Winfree, L.J. (2003). Understanding Crime: Theory and Practice (2nd ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth
* available to buy from RMIT City Bookshop

Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is designed to cover all Learning Outcomes and students will be expected to: participate in class and on-line discussions and debates, complete two closed book examinations, undertake a small scale research project and present their findings and write one 2000 word essay.

Assessment Tasks

There are 4 pieces of assessment in this subject, as follows:
1. Participation in Class Discussions (15%). Students are expected to: prepare for and attend all classes, actively participate in class discussions and make weekly postings to the on-line Learning Hub forum. There will also be one hurdle task in Week 3 which must be researched, written up and posted to the Learning Hub prior to the commencement of the Week 4 class. The participation portion of the final grade will be based upon the student’s critical engagement with the subject matter and readings, as demonstrated in the quality and quantity of their involvement in class discussions and debates. No marks are awarded simply for attendance; however as absence clearly precludes participation, it must be expected that consistent absences will impact upon the overall course grade. Assesses all Learning Outcomes
2. Exam 1 (10%). A closed book exam will be conducted in class on a date to be advised.
3. Essay (40%). Choose one of the following topics and write 2000 words, ensuring that your work is referenced according to APA standards and has a bibliography of no less than 6 texts or journal articles. Additional guidelines to essay writing will be provided.
A: ‘Crime statistics have probably generated more heated discussion and debate than most other areas of criminology (Weatherburn, 2002, in Hayes and Prenzler p35).’ Discuss the reasons for this. (Assesses LOs 3 and 4)
B: Is revenge the best way to make a victim feel better? Why/why not? (Assesses LOs 1,7 and 8)
C: How does the film ‘Girl, Interrupted’ help you to understand labelling theory and/or the feminist approach to criminology? (Assesses LO 5)
D: ‘If you eliminate poverty, you eliminate crime’. Do you agree? Why/why not? Discuss with reference to two or more of the major criminological theories (Assesses LOs 1, 5 and 7)
E: Critically analyse the use of restorative justice conferences in family violence cases
(Assesses LOs 1.4 and 7)
F: ‘The best way to deal with offenders like ‘Jisoe’ is to subject them to aversion therapy.’ Discuss with reference to the book or film version of ‘A Clockwork Orange’ and to the documentary ‘Jisoe’ (Assesses LO 5)
The deadline for your essay is 4pm on Friday 28 May, 2010.
4. Final Exam (35%) A closed book exam will be held in class on a date to be advised. The exam will consist of 35 multiple choice questions (each worth 1 mark) and will run for 2 hours. Assesses Learning Outcomes 1-8.

Assessment Matrix


Course Overview: Access Course Overview