Criminal Justice 676

CRJU 676
Environmental Criminology

1.     Catalog Entry
CRJU 676
Environmental Criminology
Three credit hours (3)

Prerequisites: Graduate standing.

This course examines the spatial distribution of crime, focusing primarily on theoretical explanations and their associated policy implications.

2.     Detailed Description of Course
I. Introduction
    A. Definition of Environmental Criminology
    B. Methods of Environmental Criminology
        1. Traditional Criminological Research
            a. Quantitative Methods
            b. Qualitative Methods
        2. Crime Analysis
        3. Crime Mapping
        4. Understanding Impacts
            a. Displacement of Crime
            b. Diffusion of Crime
II. Macro-Level Variations in Crime
    A. Region
        1. Differences
        2. Explanations
    B. Area
        1. Special Concerns About Urban Crime
        2. Special Concerns About Suburban Crime
        3. Special Concerns About Rural Crime
III. Macro-Level Theoretical Perspectives on Crime and Place
    A. Rational Choice Theories
        1. Rational Choice, Generally
        2. Routine Activities Theory
        3. Applying the Theories Spatially
    B. Social Structure Theories
        1. Social Disorganization
        2. Cultural Deviance
        3. Strain
        4. Applying the Theories Spatially
    C. Social Process Theories
        1. Social Learning
        2. Social Control
        3. Geographic Labeling
        4. Applying the Theories Spatially
    D. Conflict Theory
        1. Marginalized Areas
        2. Social Justice, Community Justice
        3. Geographically Disproportionate Criminal Justice Policy Impacts
        4. Applying the Theories Spatially
IV. Micro-Level Analysis of Spatial Variation in Crime
    A. The Built Environment
        1. Evolution of Urban Landscapes
        2. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design
        3. Defensible Space
    B. The Broken Windows Debate
        1. Broken Windows Theory
        2. Critics and Collective Efficacy
    C. Crime Pattern Theory
        1. The Brantinghams and Environmental Criminology
        2. Recent Perspectives on the Journey to Crime
    D. Socio-Political Context
        1. Suburban Flight and Depressed Cities
        2. Gentrification and Tourist Bubbles
        3. Impacts on Criminality and Criminal Justice Policy
    E. Hot Spots
        1. Defining Hot Spots
        2. Correlates of Hot Spots
V. Temporal Variations in Crime
    A. Time of Year (Seasonality)
    B. Time of Day
VI. Spatially-Driven Crime Control and Prevention Policies
    A. In the Criminal Justice System
        1. Community and Problem-Oriented Policing
        2. Other Policing Strategies
        3. Community Courts and Justice
        4. Community Correctional Alternatives
    B. Collaborative Partnerships
        1. The Concept
        2. Federal and State Programs
        3. Potential Partners
            a. Private Business and Economic Investment
            b. Public Agencies
            c. Community Groups
            d. Media (and Portrayals of Criminogenic Spaces)
    C. Responding to Crime at Places
        1. Situational Crime Prevention
        2. Geographical Profiling
        3. Applying Theoretical Perspectives
VII. Synthesis and Project Presentations     

3.    Detailed Description of Conduct of Course
This course will be conducted as a graduate seminar.  Students will be expected to engage in careful analysis and discussion of lectures and assigned readings.  In addition, a variety of formal and informal writing assignments and in-class activities (presentations, hypotheticals, case studies, etc.) may be utilized.

4.     Goals and Objectives of the Course
Having successfully completed this course, the student will be able to:
•    Identify the methods of inquiry used in the study of environmental criminology;
•    Explain differences in crime based on region and urban/suburban/rural status;
•    Assess theoretical explanations for spatial variation in crime;
•    Explain temporal variations in crime;
•    Discuss policy implications of the relationship between crime and space; and
•    Demonstrate an ability to apply relevant theories to case studies, hypotheticals, etc.

5.    Other Course Information

6.     Review and Approval
April 1, 2008