Criminal Justice Studies

Does the thought of working in law enforcement excite you?  Do you wonder what really goes on in a police or sheriff’s department or one of the many federal law enforcement agencies?  Have you thought of becoming an intelligence analyst? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you may be interested in our Criminal Justice Studies major.  Our professors have both academic and in-the-field experience and are excited to introduce you to this increasingly popular major here at Trevecca Nazarene University.

Learn about the rewards of a job of service that is both exciting and fulfilling.  Experience real life situations through a criminal justice practicum or a police ride along.  There are many possibilities and we welcome you to our program.


Criminal Justice Studies Highlights

Chase Birdwell, a May 2011 graduate of Trevecca with a degree in criminal justice studies, began the Master’s of Organizational Leadership Program in the fall of 2011. While working as a graduate assistant in Trevecca’s athletics department this year, Birdwell will earn his master’s degree before pursuing a career in criminal justice.

Kimberly Burton, a rising senior with a major in criminal justice studies, is planning for a career as an intelligence officer. She gave birth to a son, Kai, on July 2, 2011, and continued her online coursework during the summer; she returned to full time student status in fall 2011.

Mission Statement

The Criminal Justice Studies major at Trevecca Nazarene University seeks to develop competent and caring criminal justice professionals who exhibit the qualities of leadership and service from a Christian perspective in their chosen areas of community service.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a major in Criminal Justice Studies will:

  1. Be competent in the knowledge base of the various content areas within criminology, including law enforcement, corrections, and the criminal justice system.
  2. Gain an understanding of legal and justice issues and the application of Christian principles to those questions and issues.
  3. Demonstrate a comprehension of the connection between the field of criminal justice and contemporary social issues.
  4. Be adequately prepared for entry-level employment in criminology, criminal justice, or a related field.
  5. Be adequately prepared for graduate study in criminology, criminal justice, or a related field.
  6. Demonstrate Christian compassion toward individuals from all backgrounds and walks of life, regardless of their social circumstances.

Course Descriptions

SOC 2010—General Sociology (3)

The nature and functions of sociology, the development of social ideas and institutions and the processes of social interactions and social structure. Prerequisite to courses in Sociology numbered above 2000. (Fall, Spring)

SOC 2300—Social Science Statistics (3)

Introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics with social science research applications. Sampling issues; describing data with measures of central tendencies and dispersion; hypothesis testing using categorical and continuous indicators; multivariate techniques for continuous, categorical, and time dependent data, including T-test, ANOVA and nonparametric tests. SPSS will also be introduced. (Fall)

SOC 2800—Introduction to Criminology and the Criminal Justice System (3)

A study of the theoretical causes of criminal behavior and the basics of the criminal justice system. The course examines the criminal and delinquent behavior theories, the methods of control and rehabilitation in our criminal justice system from a social/environmental viewpoint, and also law enforcement, the courts, and the correctional system. (Fall odd years)

SOC 3000—Social Science Research Methods and Design (3)

An introduction to the basic skills necessary in conducting empirical research in the social sciences. Topics covered will include the logic of science in sociology and the social sciences, literature reviews, design and measurement, use of primary and secondary data, ethical issues in research, and writing research reports. Emphasis is placed on field research and the methods for conducting and analyzing research in various social settings. (Spring)

SOC 3100—Criminal Investigation (3)

Includes instruction in general investigative responsibilities and techniques, including administration, preparation, investigative jurisdiction and responsibility, and the importance of substantive report writing. Students will be introduced to crime scene investigation-- its purpose and use. (Fall even years)

SOC 3110—Criminal Law and Procedure (2)

A comprehensive introduction to criminal law and accompanying procedure in the criminal justice system. The course covers common law and statutory elements of crime, including crimes against persons, property crimes, public morality offenses, and defenses to crime. A concise look at criminal procedure and the criminal court system is also provided. (Fall odd years)

SOC 3360—Theories of Deviancy (3)

An examination of the social causes and consequences of delinquency, criminality, addiction, insanity, social unconventionality, and other deviant behavior. The course also explores differing views on the subject throughout history. (Spring even years)

SOC 3370—Juvenile Delinquency (3)

An examination of the nature, causes, and extent of juvenile delinquency. The course also explores the various segments of the juvenile justice system, including law enforcement, juvenile court, juvenile legal rights, and correction. (Spring odd years)

SOC 3410—Corrections (3)

A study of the history and practice of probation, parole, community-based corrections, and detention facilities. Also included is a history and analysis of major correctional systems. (Spring even years)

SOC 3420—Policing in Society (3)

An analysis of the functions, problems, history, procedures, and structure of policing administrations, also including the politics of law enforcement. (Fall odd years)

SOC 4300—Special Topics in Sociology (3)

Designed to provide topics of interest that are not normally part of the curriculum and that can be offered on a one-time only or irregular basis. Topics will come from the fields of sociology, criminal justice and social work and will be available as electives.

SOC 4400—Practicum/Senior Seminar in Criminal Justice (3)

A supervised practicum that provides the student with experience in an actual police, court, correctional or other criminal justice setting. Prerequisite: 12 hours completed in the criminology concentration. (Fall, Spring)