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Master of Arts in Criminal Justice Master of Arts in Criminal Justice

Master of Arts in Criminal Justice

Dr. Bert Burraston, Ph.D.

Coordinator of Graduate Studies


The Program

Application forms (click here)

The graduate program of the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice, which is part of the School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy, seeks to serve students who are interested in the criminal justice system, with a focus on those who seek careers in this area. Faculty conduct research and participate in program development relevant to the many different facets of criminology and criminal justice. A significant emphasis of the program is on developing partnerships with policymakers, program developers, and other community groups.

The graduate program provides students with a solid foundation of knowledge about criminology and criminal justice. The required course work provides students with the skills necessary for conducting and evaluating research. Graduate students have the opportunity to learn in both classroom and community settings and to work closely with faculty in all facets of research.

Objectives of the program are to provide students with an understanding of criminological principles, theories, and concepts, as well as an appreciation for the significance of social justice in public policy decisions. The program also strives to assist students in the development of critical analytical and research skills to prepare them for professional careers in the field of criminal justice.

 

Program Admission

Students are selected from the pool of qualified applicants who meet departmental admission requirements. The number of students admitted to the program yearly depends on availability of financial aid and adequate faculty supervision. Applicants should have at least a grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, satisfactory scores on both the verbal and the quantitative sections of the GRE, and two letters of recommendation. All application material should be received by July 1 for a candidate to be considered for the fall semester and November 1 for the spring semester.

To be considered for admission, the applicant should:

  1. Possess a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.
  2. Have earned a grade point average of at least 3.00 on a scale of 4.00 and achieved an acceptable score on the GRE. The admissions committee reserves the right to make exceptions for candidates presenting special circumstances.
  3. Submit a letter of purpose for graduate study to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in Criminology and Criminal Justice that is no more than one typed single-spaced page in length.
  4. Submit two letters of recommendation.

 

Program Requirements

 

  • A total of 33 semester hours of graduate work is required.
  • Up to 3 hours of thesis coursework will be counted toward the degree upon the completion and defense of the thesis. Students writing a thesis will have a thesis committee with no fewer than three members.
  • Satisfactory completion of the following core curriculum (15 hours):
  • SUAP 7100 Public Policy Statistics

  • CJUS 7100 Criminal Justice Administration: Programs and Policies  

  • CJUS 7128 Research Methods in Criminal Justice
    CJUS 7161 Intervention Strategies: Changing Organizations and Communities
    CJUS 7541 Criminological Theory: Causes of Crime

  • A minimum of 27 hours of coursework at the 7000 level, including thesis hours.
  • Up to nine hours of coursework may be taken outside the department with prior approval of the graduate coordinator.
  • Students will be allowed no more than six hours of credit toward the degree in non-classroom courses. Thesis hours will not count toward this six hour limit. 
  • Satisfactory performance on a comprehensive examination covering the major areas of criminology and criminal justice.

 

 

Retention Requirements

  1. All students are required to maintain a GPA of at least 3.00. Should the student’s GPA fall below that mark, a period of one semester will be allowed to correct the deficiency. At the discretion of the chair, the coordinator of graduate studies, and the Assistant Vice Provost for Graduate Studies, this period may be extended one additional semester.

  2. Any student receiving a grade of D or F in a required course in the core curriculum will be terminated from the program.                     

 

Courses in Criminal Justice                      

A full description of courses, requirements, departments, and degrees is available on-line in  The 2012-2013 Graduate Catalog.

CRIMINOLOGY AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE  (CJUS)

CJUS 6160 - Forensic Sciences (3)
Forensic specialties will be discussed in terms of their history, the scientific rationale upon which each is based, and the problems that may compromise accuracy or validity; introduction to field techniques and analysis of evidence.

CJUS 6180 - Corp/White Collar Crime (3)
Organizational and occupational crime in comparison to other types of criminality; emphasis on causes, frequency, control, and social impact.

CJUS 6190 - Terrorism Soc/Legl Prsp (3)
Theoretical and ideological aspects of practice of and response to international and domestic terrorism; terrorism as crime from political, social, economic, historical, and legal perspectives.

CJUS 6520 - Substantive Crimnl Law (3)
Substance of the crime, including common-law sources and basic principles, types of offenses, responsibility, justification and excuse, and related areas.

CJUS 6531 - Issues/Constitnl Rights (3)
Issues in constitutional rights related to criminal defendants, including the exclusionary rule, application of First Amendment to criminal law, due process, and equal protection; examination of civil and criminal remedies for protecting and vindicating constitutional rights.

CJUS 6533 - Juvnl Delinq Thry/Procs (3)
Theories of juvenile delinquency, gang activities, and status offenses; history, organization, programs, and procedures of agencies charged with control and prevention of juvenile delinquency including police, juvenile units, juvenile courts, and juvenile correctional agencies.

CJUS 6535 - Capital Punishment/America (3)
Social science research on death penalty in United States; legal history of death penalty; structure of modern capital trials and appeals; wrongful death convictions; racial disparities; jury decision-making; life histories of capital defendants; deterrence, brutalization, incapacitation; human costs of murder and execution.

CJUS 7100 - CJ Administration (3)
Examination of the structure and interrelationship of the major components of the criminal justice system, with an emphasis on the impact of social and political forces on roles and functions of criminal justice agencies.

CJUS 7110 - Ind Dir Study (1-4)
Individual directed research/readings in special areas of interest in the field of criminal justice. May be repeated for a maximum of 4 credit hours. PREREQUISITE: Permission of Coordinator of Graduate Studies. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 7128 - Rsrch Mthds Crim Justce (3)
Principles of social science research as applied to the study of the criminal justice system; sampling techniques and research strategies; emphasis on the development of research skills enabling the student to conduct an independent research project.

CJUS 7129 - Advanced Stat In Cj (3)
Introduction to intermediate and advanced topics related to statistical analysis of data from the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data; emphasis on Bureau of Justice Statistics data describing principal activities of the system and on complex data sets or those showing special promise for informing theoretical issues. PREREQUISITE: Permission of the Graduate Coordinator.

CJUS 7130 - Crime Anly/Crim Bhvr (3)
In-depth study of "normal crimes"; the analysis of the characteristics of the criminal, the victim, and the setting for specified offenses; the typical demographic and ecological elements of each type of crime with the purpose of providing a framework for analysis and comparison.

CJUS 7131 - Res Practicum In Cj (3)
The student will be exposed to development, implementation, and/or analysis of research methodology. Each student will work under direction of one faculty member on an experimental, theoretical or applied research study. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit hours. PREREQUISITE: CJUS 7128.

CJUS 7140 - Graduate Colloquium (3)
Presentations of scholarly activity and examination of classical and contemporary issues in criminology and criminal justice. Required of all graduate assistants. NOTE: Criminology and Criminal Justice majors may not use this course to fulfill degree requirements. PREREQUISITE: Appointment as a graduate assistant in Criminology and Criminal Justice. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 7141 - Reading For Comps (1-6)
Arranged on an individual basis for Criminology and Criminal Justice graduate students only and directed by faculty. PREREQUISITES: Student must have completed required course work or be in the last semester of required course work. NOTE: Criminology and Criminal Justice majors may not use this course to fulfill degree requirements. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 7150 - Intrnshp Criminl Justce (3-6)
Experience in a criminal justice setting through assignment to an enforcement, judicial, or correctional agency under joint supervision of agency officials and university faculty. PREREQUISITE: Permission of Coordinator of Graduate Studies. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 7160 - Sem Cj Administration (3)
Theories of organization with emphasis on structures, principles, techniques, and processes of criminal justice agencies; factors affecting behavior within such organizations; motivation, leadership, group dynamics, conflict management, unionization, selection, training, performance evaluation, organizational change, and political factors in public agency operation.

CJUS 7161 - Intervention Strategies (3)
Development of intervention, prevention, and suppression strategies by criminal justice agencies; role of social and political institutions and forces on design and implementation of strategies; emphasis on how design and implementation impact communities and residents.

CJUS 7460 - Race,Ethnicity,Gender (3)
Looks at ways race, ethnicity, and gender have an impact on how offenders and victims are treated within the criminal justice system, focusing on majority/minority relations and how attitudes revolving around these relations are reflected within the criminal justice process.

CJUS 7510 - Law And Society (3)
Examination of law as a system of control and as a mechanism for the resolution of conflict; relationship of law to political, economic, and social systems critically analyzed; the development of the legal profession.

CJUS 7523 - Cncpt Of Criminal Law (3)
Social foundation and principles on which our system of criminal law is based.

CJUS 7535 - Seminar in Capital Punishment (3)
In depth study of the death penalty in the United States, with focus on four areas: history of death penalty in U.S.; legal issues and rulings; current social science research; effects of homicide and capital punishment on society.

CJUS 7541 - Crim Theory (3)
An overview of historical, sociological, biological, and economic theories of crime causation; particular attention will be paid to critically analyzing each of the theories presented in terms of research findings.

CJUS 7542 - Victimology (3)
An overview of the study of crime victims and the process, etiology, and consequences of criminal victimization, with focus on the types of crime victims, theories of victimization, and the victim's treatment within the criminal justice system using national data as well as recent research findings.

CJUS 7570 - Legal Issues CJ Admin (3)
Relationship between legal and constitutional issues and concepts of ordered liberty and administration of justice; application of legal methodology to analysis of current issues in constitutional rights and remedies.

CJUS 7996 - Thesis (1-6)
Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 8100 - Cj Administration (3)
Examination of the structure and interrelationship of the major components of the criminal justice system, with an emphasis on the impact of social and political forces on roles and functions of criminal justice agencies.

CJUS 8110 - Ind Dir Study (1-4)
Individual directed research/readings in special areas of interest in the field of criminal justice. May be repeated for a maximum of 4 credit hours. PREREQUISITE: Permission of Coordinator of Graduate Studies. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 8141 - Reading For Comps (1-6)
Arranged on an individual basis for Criminology and Criminal Justice graduate students only and directed by faculty. PREREQUISITES: Student must have completed required course work or be in the last semester of required course work. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

CJUS 8150 - Intrnshp Criminl Justce (3-6)
Experience in a criminal justice setting through assignment to an enforcement, judicial, or correctional agency under joint supervision of agency officials and university faculty. PREREQUISITE: Permission of Coordinator of Graduate Studies. Grades of S, U, or IP will be given.

 

Financial Assistance

Financial assistance for graduate students is available in the form of assistantships which are awarded on a competitive basis.
 
Graduate Student Handbook

 Graduate Student Handbook

Contact us

For more information:  E-Mail  Dr. Bert Burraston at bbrrston@memphis.edu

Note that application forms are available on-line.

Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
311 McCord Hall
The University of Memphis
Memphis, Tennessee 38152-6126

(901) 678-2737
(901) 678-5279 (FAX)

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Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice | 311 McCord Hall | Memphis, TN | 38152-3530 | Phone: 901-678-2737 | Fax: 901-678-5279 | E-Mail: cjus@memphis.edu
Last Updated: 8/28/13