Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology

5030 Cherry Street, 434 Cherry Hall
(816) 235-2751
Fax: (816) 235-5193
mail to:

Mailing Address
University of Missouri-Kansas City
Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology
5030 Cherry Street, 434 Cherry Hall
Kansas City, MO 64110-2499

Department Chair:
Lori Sexton

Professor Emeritus:
Wayne Lucas

Professor Emerita:
Cathleen Burnett

Alexander Holsinger, Kristi Holsinger, Toya Like, Kenneth Novak

Associate Professors:
Jennifer Owens (principal graduate advisor), Lori Sexton (chair)

Assistant Professors:
Janet Garcia-Hallett

Assistant Teaching Professor:
Lindsey Arbuthnot Clancey

Administrative Assistant:
Kaylea Jones

Department Description

The Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology offers programs of study leading to the following degrees:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice and Criminology
  • Master of Science in Criminal Justice and Criminology

A program minor is available in Criminal Justice and Criminology.

The mission of the department is to extend knowledge about the nature of crime and criminal justice. This mission includes continuing participation by faculty in significant criminological research; other scholarly endeavors; and inviting students to join in that activity by:

  • Learning the core materials of the discipline.
  • Acquiring research skills.
  • Assisting in faculty research.
  • Becoming involved in student activities that supplement coursework and research.

Within the context of a liberal arts education, the program offers an interdisciplinary approach to study the criminal justice system. The program is designed to develop the intellectual skills required to function effectively as a field practitioner and to provide the knowledge base for careers as planners, administrators and researchers. The course offerings emphasize issues and problems relevant to policy considerations in criminal justice.

Department Activities

Undergraduate Academic Advising

Student academic advising is a continuous process in the department. Undergraduate advisors are available for consultation throughout the academic year. The department recommends that students check the program requirements in the department office before filing the declaration of major form. Undergraduate majors are encouraged to consult with the department to establish a tentative plan of study. Students should leave their mail and email addresses with the department office so that they can receive notifications concerning class time tables, new classes, and other departmental information of interest to majors.

Financial Assistance

Students can receive financial assistance through various campus scholarships, loan programs, grants and the work-study program. Students who are interested should contact the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.

Alvin Brooks Scholarship

Award Amount: Varies

Qualifications: Full-time undergraduate student majoring in Criminal Justice & Criminology, who is in good academic standing with a minimum GPA of 2.0.  Preference given to students who are a first generation college student, who graduated from an accredited Kansas City, Missouri high school or transferred from a Kansas City area community college. The student must demonstrate financial need.

How to Apply: The College of Arts and Sciences' Scholarship Application.

Clarence Kelley Memorial Scholarship

Award Amount: Varies

Qualifications: Full-time undergraduate student majoring in Criminal Justice & Criminology, who is in good academic standing. Preference will be given to students who have demonstrated a commitment to high academic achievement.

How to Apply: The College of Arts and Sciences' Scholarship Application

Criminal Justice Club and Honor Society

The Criminal Justice and Criminology Club is open to all students interested in criminal justice topics; students do not have to be a Criminal Justice and Criminology Major. Club activities include service projects in the community, sponsorship of community speakers on campus, participation in local and regional professional meetings, and learning about internships and research opportunities. The department also has a chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma, a national honor society for Criminal Justice students. Students must meet certain academic qualifications and pay an initiation fee to join this national honor society.

Cooperative Programs

The department cooperates with several other programs on the campus by jointly listing courses at the undergraduate level. Students may benefit from combining one of these areas of study with their major:

  • Honors College
  • Women's and Gender Studies
  • Black Studies

Graduate Academic Advising

Student academic advising is a continuous process in the department. The principal graduate advisor is available for consultation throughout the academic year. Graduate students are required to consult with the department to establish a tentative plan of study. A master's degree program of study form, and a form appointing a supervisory committee, should be submitted by the end of the student's first semester in the program. Students should leave their mail and e-mail addresses with the department so they can receive notifications concerning class time tables, new classes and other departmental news and opportunities.


CJC 101 Introduction To Criminal Justice Credits: 3

This introductory overview course is designed to familiarize students with the three main components of the adult criminal justice system: police, courts, and corrections. The course will investigate the viewpoints of offenders, victims, social scientists, the general public, and workers in the system on diverse issues of social control, criminal behavior, treatment and punishment.

CJC 101 - MOTR CRJS 101: Introduction to Criminal Justice

CJC 240 Delinquency And Juvenile Justice Credits: 3

This course focuses on the nature, extent and theoretical explanations of delinquency and the history and philosophy behind the juvenile justice system in terms of the roles played by law enforcement, juvenile courts, and corrections. Juvenile groups such as status offenders, delinquents, gang members, victims, and juveniles adjudicated as adult criminals will also be examined.

CJC 280 Gangs and Crime Credits: 3

This course will provide students with an overview of what is known about street gangs. Specifically, the course will cover definitional issues, gang organization and structure, gang culture, gang member onset and desistance, among other issues related to criminal street gangs. This course will also encourage students to think critically about communities, crime, and group formation.

CJC 282 Criminal Justice & Criminology in Popular Media Credits: 3

This course examines criminology and criminal justice as it is represented in popular film to explore critically the impact media has on the public's perception of the criminal justice system, the origin of criminal behavior, and the broad sociological constructs of criminology. A key focus is the media's power to shape criminal justice policy and practice.

CJC 301 Theoretical Criminology Credits: 3

A comprehensive examination of the major criminology theories, their philosophical assumptions, and the socio-historical context in which they were articulated.

CJC 302 Methods of Criminological Research Credits: 3

A seminar which explores the interrelationships between sociology theory, research methods, and statistics. May focus on major contemporary issues building on and integrating knowledge obtained in previous courses.

CJC 303 Introduction to Statistics in Sociology and Criminal Justice Credits: 3

A first course in the statistical analysis of quantitative data. Course emphasizes descriptive statistics, probability theory, parameter estimation, bivariate hypothesis testing, and computer applications.

Prerequisites: MATH 110 or MATH 116 or STAT 115 or MOTRMATH 110 or higher level math (with a grade of C- or higher); or ALEKS Score of 61 or higher; or MyMathTest College Algebra score of 70 or higher.

CJC 332 Race, Class and Justice Credits: 3

This course examines the intersection of race and class as it relates to crime and justice. Specifically, the course focuses on race and class in relation to criminological theory and the application of justice system practices and policies.

CJC 335 Blackness as Threat Credits: 3

This course examines from a criminological and socio-legal perspective the historical and contemporary influence of race on perceptions of threat/danger, violence, and justice. The class focuses particularly on the experiences of African Americans in these regards, using recent high-profile cases as empirical lenses through which to discuss this topic.

CJC 338 Immigration and Crime Credits: 3

This course examines concerns regarding a purported connection between immigration and crime in the United States. We will begin through an examination of how immigrants have become increasingly criminalized, shaping an overlap between immigration and criminalization. This class explores the threat narrative regarding the Latinx population, generally, and explore gender disparities in these depictions of Latina women compared to Latino men. Discussions will incorporate details about the immigrant population in the Kansas City metropolitan area and look at examples of how local community agencies and activists are working to address human rights issues.

CJC 351 Policing In The Community Credits: 3

The purpose of this class is to introduce the student to police operations and the effectiveness of different police programs. The material discussed in class focuses on empirical evaluations of police effectiveness, and the role of the police in today's society. This class is divided into four broad areas: the nature and effectiveness of patrol; criminal investigations; special operations including crackdowns, responses to domestic assaults, and hot spot policing; and the latest crime prevention strategies, such as community oriented policing and problem solving.

CJC 354 Policing in America Credits: 3

A comparison of law enforcement and peace-keeping functions of the police provides a basic theme for the course, with examination of several topics related to police accomplishing these functions. Some of the topics covered include police discretion, police professionalism, the police officer as a bureaucratic agent, and police-community relations.

CJC 357 Crime Scene Investigation Credits: 3

This course will examine contemporary issues in crime scene investigation and its relevance to the criminal justice system. It will include an overview of legal issues, proper evidence collection techniques, and the preservation of evidence. Several different types of crime scenes will be explored.

CJC 361 Principles & Practices of Criminal Courts Credits: 3

The course examines the American criminal judicial system, including the history, philosophy, and changing nature of criminal courts. The activities of lawyers, judges, and related professionals are emphasized, and current topics involving the criminal court are discussed.

CJC 364 The Supreme Court And The Criminal Process Credits: 3

Course examines recent Supreme Court decisions on the constitutional aspects of the administration of justice. Topics include the nationalization of the Bill of Rights and jurisdiction with an emphasis on problems involving the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and 14th Amendments.

CJC 370 Principles Of Corrections Credits: 3

This course explores adult institutional and community-based corrections in the United States. Major areas examined include the evolution of corrections, the process of correctional reform, adult offenders and prison culture, treatment and rehabilitation of offenders, intermediate sanctions, and correctional workers.

CJC 371 Community Corrections Credits: 3

This course will examine intermediate sanctions in the United States, such as probation, halfway houses, boot camps, among others. Specifically, the origin and proliferation of the use of corrections in the community will be explored in depth. The effectiveness of several major community correctional strategies will be explored through a review of the research literature base. Several issues will be highlighted including (but not limited to ) ethical constraints, political problems, and treatment effectiveness in light of the use of community sanctions.

CJC 381 Advocacy and Crisis Intervention Credits: 3

This course focuses on the dynamics of sexual violence, advocacy skills, and how communities respond. The course will examine sexual violence in America, dynamics and trauma response to sexual violence, advocacy skills, and the role of community responders, including new strategies for response.

CJC 382 Human Trafficking Credits: 3

This course is designed to equip prospective Criminal Justice professionals with a comprehensive, trauma informed understanding of the issue of human trafficking, as it exists within the context of a modern, developed society. Students will learn the elements of a comprehensive strategy to address this crime; identification, exit, restoration, legal reforms, and prevention.

CJC 385 Victimology Credits: 3

This course addresses the study of crime, criminals and victims. It examines the relationship between victims and offenders. Special treatment is given to criminological as well as victimological theories. A segment of the course will address the sporadic nature of juvenile crime. The course will examine viable strategies to reduce levels of victimization. In the final analysis the course will offer crime prevention strategies.

CJC 390 New Dimensions In Criminal Justice Credits: 3

Examination of contemporary topics, issues or problems related to the development of justice and/or operations in response to criminal and related behaviors addressed by the justice system. May be repeated for credit when the topic changes.

CJC 395 Criminal Justice and Criminology Career Exploration Credits: 3

The course examines opportunities in US Criminal Justice and Criminology within law enforcement, courts, and corrections, local, state, federal, private sector and academia. Students will learn ethics and professionalism, securing internships, preparing for interviews, effective networking and career-building.

CJC 430 Women, Crime And Criminal Justice Credits: 3

This course will focus on the experiences of women and girls with crime in America. The primary areas studied will be females as victims, offenders, and professionals in the criminal justice system. Various criminological theories and research will also be examined in light of gender.

CJC 431 Hate & Bias Crimes Credits: 3

The purpose of this course is to examine the development and enforcement of hate crime law within our legal system. Discussion focuses on the causes and consequences of hate crimes, the constitutional issues associated with bias crime statutes, and the effectiveness of formal and informal social controls for eliminating hate and bias crimes.

CJC 481 Restorative Justice Credits: 3

This course is an introduction to the concept of restorative justice. The course examines the roots of the concept, its theoretical perspective, and its applications in juvenile justice, mediation and correctional settings.

CJC 482 The Death Penalty In America Credits: 3

This course takes a sociological look at the most extreme punishment currently in use in the United States. Society debates its value without giving much weight to the research which social science conducts. Indeed, the political domain frequently misrepresents the data that is available. The course evaluates the adequacy of the research and separates the strands of the debates in order to understand the role of the death penalty in our society.

CJC 488 Mentoring Juvenile Justice System-Involved Youth Credits: 3

Youth mentoring experience in a juvenile justice setting with required training and classroom study. Requires successful background check completion.

CJC 490 Directed Studies In Criminal Justice And Criminology Credits: 1-5

Individual research and study in the student's field of interest as approved and directed by major professors. The work involves examination and reporting of selected problems affecting the various agencies of our legal system. Only two of the 490 sequence courses and up to 3 credit hours can be applied to the major. A. Law Enforcement B. Court Operations and Administration C. Corrections D. Legal Theory and Philosophy E. Criminological Theory F. Sociology of Law.

CJC 491 Internship In Criminal Justice Credits: 3-6

Intern experience under faculty supervision in local, state, federal or private agencies working with justice system involved offenders.

Prerequisites: Junior or Senior CJC student.

CJC 492 Topics In Criminal Justice Credit: 1

Specialized, short courses with focused examination of particular topics germane to the study of the justice system. May be repeated for credit.

CJC 495WI Capstone: Criminal Justice And Criminology Credits: 3

This course is designed to integrate student's program of study in the major of criminal justice and criminology. The class examines current conditions of the justice system with respect of race, gender and social class.

Prerequisites: Senior CJC student.

CJC 5500 Sociology Of Law Credits: 3

A sociological study of the legal system with focus on organizational analyses of the legal profession, courts as a social system, the bureaucratization of the legal process, stratification and the allocation of legal services and careers.

CJC 5511 Sociological Methods II Credits: 3

Quantitative research is the primary focus of the course; emphasis is placed on problem formulation; research design; sampling procedures, questionnaire construction and interviewing techniques; data collection; problems of scaling, computer statistical programs; linking appropriate statistical analyses with data analysis; and report writing.

Prerequisites: CJC 483.

CJC 5515 Qualitative Research Methods in Criminal Justice Credits: 3

This course focuses on qualitative research methods, such as interviewing techniques, focus groups, content analysis, and field observation. Emphasis is placed on research design, data collection, and data analysis.

Prerequisites: CJC 483.

CJC 5516 Intermediate Statistics Credits: 3

A systematic development of the logic and practice of selected statistical methods used in sociological research. Included are analysis of variance and covariance, regression analysis, multiple contingency, and non-parametric tests.

Prerequisites: CJC 363.

CJC 5518 Advanced Criminological Theory Credits: 3

This course provides an understanding of past as well as present criminological theories by examining each criminological tradition (beginning in the 18th century and continuing into the present.) The primary aim of the course is to determine the root causes of deviant and criminal behaviors. Moreover, this course offers special attention to how society has historically reacted and responded to crime and deviant behavior. Furthermore, by examining crime and deviant behavior from a historical context, the students are able to determine how criminological theories have influenced public policies designed to reduce and control criminal behavior. In the final analysis, students will examine the rationales that society use to justify efforts toward punishment and treatment.

Prerequisites: CJC 319.

CJC 5520 Juvenile Justice Credits: 3

This course provides a historical and contemporary overview of the juvenile justice system via a critical examination of the function of this system and theories explaining delinquency in adolescence. We will explore special topics within juvenile justice and proposals for juvenile justice reform.

CJC 5551 Seminar In Policing Credits: 3

This course addresses the important topics related to the institution of policing. Through readings and class discussions, students will gain a better understanding of both historical aspects of policing as well as the future of policing. Topics include selection, training and socialization, police management, deviance and corruption, use of force, community oriented policing.

CJC 5565 Seminar In Crime Prevention Credits: 3

This seminar examines variations in methods to reduce crime in America, including strategies from the criminal justice system as well as other institutions. Building on established criminological theory, this seminar will evaluate the best practices to prevent crime across a variety of social contexts.

CJC 5570 Contemporary Corrections And Correctional Policy Credits: 3

Present-day correctional alternatives are considered regarding the correctional policy that is, or potentially can be, carried out within the various programs. Prisons, probation, parole community-based programs are evaluated as to the theory of punishment demonstrated within these programs. Emphasis is placed on what constitutes a rational and workable corrections policy and the form of correctional programs needed to realize such policy.

CJC 5575 Correctional Rehabilitation And Treatment Credits: 3

This course will begin with a thorough examination of the rise, fall, and recent resurrection of "rehabilitation and treatment" in American correctional strategies. Both past and current treatment strategies will be studied regarding their effectiveness in reducing recidivism. This will be done through a survey of the quantitative literature base. There will be some emphasis on treating special needs offenders (e.g., sex offenders, juvenile offenders, offenders with developmental disabilities or mental illnesses.)

CJC 5576 Seminar In Criminal Justice And Criminology Issues Credits: 3

This course is an advanced exploration of the relationship between the criminal justice system and criminal behavior from at least one of the following perspectives: psychological, sociological, economic, legal, political or administration/ management. Will include discussions and analysis of contemporary readings and on-going research in the selected perspective.

CJC 5580 Seminar: Policy And Decision Making In Criminal Justice Credits: 3

The focus of the course is assessment of the character and recent crime trends in the United States, with attention to identifying elements that shape justice system policies in response to crime. Consideration is given to the nature and scope of policy and decision-making processes in legal institutions and law enforcement bureaucracies, how such policies have impacted crime, and alternative policies address the problem of crime.

CJC 5590 Directed Studies In Criminal Justice And Criminology Credits: 1-3

Individual research and study in the student's field of interest as approved and directed by major professors. The work involves examination and reporting of selected problems affecting the various agencies of our legal system. A. Law Enforcement B. Court Operations and Administration C. Corrections D. Legal Theory and Philosophy E. Criminological Theory F. Sociology of Law.

CJC 5592 Advanced GIS For Crime Analysis Credits: 3

This course provides an overview of crime mapping as it relates to the spatial and temporal analysis of crime. Utilizing theory related to criminal offending, this course will provide students with hands-on experience in geographic profiling and crime prevention strategies.

Prerequisites: GEOG 203.

CJC 5595 Crime Analysis Internship Credits: 3

This experience involves working with crime analysts in the field. Students will learn and hone practical skills while being supervised by department faculty or staff.

Prerequisites: CJC 5592.

CJC 5599 Research And Thesis Credits: 1-6

Directed specialized research. Before writing a thesis, the student must clear the topic and research design with the Supervisory Committee.

CJC 5699 Dissertation Research Credits: 1-12

Individual directed research leading to preparation and completion of doctoral dissertation.

Prerequisites: Ph.D. course requirements completed.

CJC 5899 Required Graduate Enrollment Credit: 1