Course Title: Criminal Justice Systems

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Criminal Justice Systems

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 1 2020,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 1 2022,
Sem 2 2022,
Sem 1 2023,
Sem 2 2023,
Sem 1 2024,
Sem 2 2024


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies

Face-to-Face or Internet

Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 2 2018,
Sem 2 2019

Course Coordinator: Assoc Professor Michele Ruyters

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2537

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Building 37. Level 4. Room 10

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

In this course, you will critique foundational concepts, theories and approaches which underpin the justice sector including the three arms of the criminal justice system: law enforcement, criminal courts, and the corrections system. You will explore the overrepresentation of disadvantaged and vulnerable groups in the criminal justice system and factors that may lead to miscarriages of justice. You will also critically analyse policy development and implementation and consider innovative justice approaches. 

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Program Learning Outcomes 

This course is a first year core course in MC223 Master of Justice and Criminology. In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:  

  1. Use strategic, critical, creative, and analytical thinking to develop creative solutions to a range of dynamic problems associated with crime management and the justice system 
  2. Critically analyse, synthesise and reflect on advanced theories, principles, philosophies in the justice sector, both locally and globally, to extend and challenge knowledge and practice

Course Learning Outcomes 

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:  

  1. Examine and assess the systemic nature of the criminal justice system, its agencies and their efficiency
  2. Identify and critique a range of perspectives related to the history, development, purposes and functions of key criminal justice agencies
  3. Investigate individual components within the criminal justice system, and their inter-dependent relationships in servicing specific client groups
  4. Analyse contemporary developments in the criminal justice system and appraise the system’s strengths and weaknesses
  5. Describe how criminal justice involves public policies that are developed within the political framework of the democratic process.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be actively engaged in a range of learning activities such as lectures, tutorials, seminars, project work, class discussion, individual and group activities. Delivery may be face to face, online or a mix of both. 

In this course you will begin the integration of your learning and your future workplace practice through interaction with industry professionals.

Overview of Learning Resources

Resources will be available through the Canvas student portal, myRMIT, and RMIT Library resources. You will have the opportunity to contribute collectively to class resources by sharing your own research findings and sources with your peers.  

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems. 

There are services available to support your learning through the University Library. The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help as well as a range of study support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes. 

Assessment Tasks 

Assessment Task 1: Essay, 100% CLO1 - CLO5

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks. 

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more. 

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions.