Research Methods In Criminal Justice – cja433 (3 credits)

Students learn and demonstrate knowledge of research methodology within the criminal justice system and become acquainted with the range and scope of quantitative and qualitative tools available to the criminal justice researcher.

This undergraduate-level course is 5 weeks. This course is available as part of a degree or certificate program. To enroll, speak with an Enrollment Representative.

Research Designs and Data Collection Methods

  • Distinguish between probability and nonprobability sampling plans.

  • Explore internal and external variable-related validity factors.

  • Examine the features, functions, construction, and administration of questionnaires, and their strengths and weaknesses.

  • Assess features and functions of observation and its strengths and weaknesses as a data-gathering tool.

  • Differentiate between types and functions of research designs.

  • Describe the various classical experimental research designs.

  • Identify the major types of unobtrusive methods.

Statistics in Criminal Justice Research

  • Explore different statistical measurement types and levels.

  • Compute the mean, median, and mode of statistical data.

  • Identify the properties of the normal distribution.

  • Examine the role of probability in statistics and statistical significance.

  • Describe the fundamentals of hypothesis testing.

Research Application in Criminal Justice

  • Identify how findings will be utilized.

  • Extrapolate on issues surrounding the collection, analysis, and utilization of research.

  • Defend major research issues and how they affect the conduct and quality of research.

  • Discuss the importance of project replication.

  • Describe how to write a research report.

  • Examine proposal writing and various funding criteria.

Introduction to Research in Criminal Justice

  • Explore the meaning of statistics and the basic ideas behind any statistical study
  • Differentiate between pure and applied research.

  • Explore the scientific approach to criminal justice research.
  • Distinguish between qualitative and quantitative research.

  • Specify the various functions of the research process.
  • Summarize the meaning of research ethics and examine the codes of ethics in criminal justice research.
  • Assess the nature and diversity of ethical dilemmas in criminological research.

Analysis and Evaluation

  • Define reliability and the different kinds of reliability checks.

  • Describe the functions of data management.

  • Discuss graphic presentation and its value as a descriptive tool in criminological research.

  • Examine the determination and measurement of validity.

  • Examine various scaling and index construction methods.

  • Classify common errors in presenting and interpreting research findings.

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