Sociology and Criminal Justice

Martha Henderson Hurley (Department Head)
Location: Ferguson Social Sciences Building #210, 903-886-5332
Sociology and Criminal Justice Web Site: http://www.tamuc.edu/academics/colleges/humanitiesSocialSciencesArts/departments/sociologyCriminalJustice/default.aspx

Dr. Martha Hurley, Department Head

The mission of the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice is to provide quality learning experiences to equip students with social, intellectual, leadership and critical thinking skills, preparing them for a global and diverse society.

In addition to the major objective of contributing to the development of an educated person, some of the specific departmental objectives are as follows:

  1. prepare students for teaching roles at all educational levels;
  2. develop students’ skills and knowledge that will enable them to conduct and interpret empirical research;
  3. prepare students for professional careers in the fields of sociology and criminal justice;
  4. prepare students for PhD programs in sociology and criminology;
  5. develop programs designed to provide community services, extending from the local to regional and national levels;
  6. provide curriculum support to other departments and university programs.

Admission

Sociology

Admission to a graduate program is granted by the Dean of Graduate Studies upon the recommendation of the department. Acceptance will be based on admission to the Graduate School, scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), undergraduate grade point average, one letter of recommendation, statement of purpose, and a sample of student’s writing that demonstrates their ability to utilize a) scientific research, or b) critical thinking skills, and completion of undergraduate prerequisites.  Students are required to take a graduate diagnostic exam before initial enrollment or at the latest during the first semester of work in the department. Students seeking a graduate certificate must be admitted to a master's degree program or in a non-degree admission status.

GRE EXEMPTION:  Students applying for admission to either the Sociology or Applied Criminology program may qualify for an exemption from the GRE if they meet of the following criteria:

  1. overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher
  2. completed master's degree from a regionally accredited institution with at least a 3.0 overall graduate GPA 

Applied Criminology

Admission to a graduate program is granted by the Dean of Graduate Studies upon the recommendation of the department.  Acceptance will be based on admission to the Graduate School, scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), undergraduate grade point average, one letter of recommendation, writing sample, a statement of purpose that asks students to explain who they are, what has influenced their career path, their professional interests, and future professional plans, and completion of undergraduate prerequisites.  Students are required to take a graduate diagnostic exam before initial enrollment or at the latest during the first semester of work in the department.  

GRE EXEMPTION: Students applying for admission to the Applied Criminology program may qualify for an exemption from the GRE if they meet of the following criteria:

  1. overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher
  2. completed master's degree from a regionally accredited institution with at least a 3.0 overall graduate GPA 

Note: The Department reserves the right to suspend from the program any student who in the judgment of the departmental graduate committee, does not meet the professional expectations of the field.

CJ 501 - Sem in Police and Law Enf
Hours: 3
Seminar in Policing and Law Enforcement This course is an advanced approach to policing and law enforcement. The focus of the class will be on the operations and functioning of policing and law enforcement departments at the local, state and federal levels. The course will examine related areas such as personnel, practices, procedures and issues in policing and law enforcement. This course will investigate additional areas such as use of technology in policing, police subculture and community policing.

CJ 505 - Terrorism
Hours: 3
Terrorism - Three semester hours This course will provide a theoretical and empirical explanation of terrorism. It will identify various forms and typologies of terrorist activities, their consequences and preventive measures, particularly those that are relevant to the criminal justice system in the United States.

CJ 514 - Family Violence
Hours: 3
Family Violence. Three semester hours. (Same as SOC 514) A thorough and critical examination of family violence from a sociological perspective. Topics include the meaning, nature, and types of family violence; biological, psychological, anthropological, and sociological theories which attempt to explain hostility, aggression, and violence among intimate people; the philosophy of non-violence; the consequences of violence; and preventive measures and strategies for dealing with violence in the family. Although the course focuses on the American family, illustrations of family violence from other cultures are provided.

CJ 517 - Teaching Soc/CJ
Hours: 3
Teaching Sociology and Criminal Justice - Three semester hours This course will assist students in developing and formulating ideas, gaining practice and critically assessing information concerning community college and university teaching. In addition to the coverage of teaching literature within the field of sociology and criminal justice, the course will emphasize the development of teaching pedagogy, syllabus and test construction, teaching philosophy, and allow the student to obtain "hands-on" experience in the college classroom.

CJ 518 - Thesis
Hours: 3-6
Thesis The student will work under the supervision of a faculty advisor on a thesis for candidates for the Master of Science Option I criminal justice degree. Major work will include the development of a proposal, collection, analysis and interpretation of data and the final writing of the thesis. Note: Course is repeated as two three-credit hour courses. Graded on a (S) satisfactory or (U) unsatisfactory basis.

CJ 520 - CJ Admin and Mgmt
Hours: 3
Criminal Justice Administration and Management This course will provide students with a conceptual and theoretical foundation upon which to study criminal justice administration and management through critical evaluation and application of the research literature to present-day criminal justice challenges and concerns.

CJ 530 - Seminar in Criminology
Hours: 3
Seminar in Criminology - Three semester hours This course examines crime and delinquency in America from several theoretical perspectives. The course provides an in-depth investigation into major criminological theories that explain the causation, occurrence and development of criminal behavior. A wide spectrum of criminological theories are introduced, applied and critiqued in this course.

CJ 531 - Issues in Crim Law and Courts
Hours: 3
Issues in Criminal Law and Courts - Three semester hours The course will focus on critical thinking related to issues concerning principles of criminal law and court procedures as well as selected practices particularly relevant to the United States. Issues will include: justice for all, freedom and privacy of the individual, cruel and unusual punishment, use of deadly force in law enforcement, trial by jury, election of judges and morality and the law.

CJ 532 - Juvenile Delinquency
Hours: 3
The class will consider the subject of juvenile delinquency from various perspectives including psychological, physiological and sociological. Particular attention will be paid to the role of family, the school, and the peer group in promoting delinquency. This course will provide students with the tools to analyze and evaluate juvenile justice policies and programs. The course will explore various topics such as the nature and extent of delinquency, theories of delinquency, research on the causes of delinquency,and strategies for controlling and preventing juvenile delinquency. Prerequisites: CJ 501, CJ 530, CJ 531 and CJ 568.

CJ 533 - Gender and Crime
Hours: 3
This course is designed to explore the important and under-studied intersection between gender/women and crime. We will explore the nature and extent of women as victims, offenders, and workers in the criminal justice system. This course will also allow students to become familiar with criminological theories as they relate to women.

CJ 534 - Drugs and Society
Hours: 3
Our focus in the course will be on the social reality of drug use and drug users within contemporary society. It will include a historical analysis of the social construction of drug use, drug users, abuse, and addiction. We will be investigating the complex relationships between individual and group behavior, and social structure. Central concepts such as social learning, labeling, power, and inequality, as well as socio-cultural definitions of drugs, behavior, and the people who use drugs will be the tools of our analysis. Special attention will be given to the complex legal history surrounding drug use, the link between drugs and crime, the impact of the medicalization of human behavior, and varying perspectives on "doing something about drugs." Prerequisites: CJ 501, CJ 568, CJ 530, and CJ 531.

CJ 565 - Offender Reentry
Hours: 3
Offender Reentry - Three semester hours Offender reentry is the process of transition of offenders from prisons/jail to the community. The class will provide students with an in-depth analysis of issues impacting offender reentry, including employment, access to various forms of treatment, family reunification, housing issues as well as barriers and impediments to offender reentry.

CJ 568 - Seminar in Corrections
Hours: 3
Seminar in Corrections. Three semester hours. A study of popular issues in community-based and institutional corrections with emphasis on organizational goal setting and achievement, program evaluation, client supervision, agency administration, and problem solving. An analysis of current research and its applicability to the criminal justice system and society will be performed.

CJ 575 - Research Methods in CJ
Hours: 3
Research Methods in Criminal Justice This course will provide students with the fundamentals of conducting and evaluating research in criminal justice. Topics include: defining research problems, ethics in criminal justice research, selecting and measuring variables, stating hypotheses, sampling, and developing experimental research design. Prerequisites : CJ 501, CJ 530, CJ 531, CJ 568, CJ 577, CJ 520 OR CJ 583, or equivalent, and completion of nine hours of electives

CJ 576 - Data Analysis and Interp
Hours: 3
Data Analysis and Interpretation - Three semester hours This course continues students’ exploration of research in criminal justice. In this course, students are exposed to different methods of data collection and the principles of data analysis. Emphasis will also be placed on teaching students how to interpret data as presented in published reports, articles, and books. Pre-requisites : CJ501, CJ530, CJ531, and CJ568, CJ577, CJ520 OR CJ583, completion of nine hours of electives, CJ 575, or equivalent

CJ 577 - CJ Planning and Eval
Hours: 3
Criminal Justice Planning and Evaluation - Three semester hours The class will acquaint students with scientific techniques used for analyzing criminal justice problems and developing solutions. This course will provide students with the tools to analyze and evaluate criminal justice policies and programs.

CJ 583 - Criminal Justice Policy
Hours: 3
Criminal Justice Policy - Three semester hours This course will evaluate various policy dimensions of crime and criminal justice. Students will learn the process through which policy is made, will critically evaluate current criminal justice policies and will study the impact of policy decisions on criminal justice practice.

CJ 589 - Independent Studies
Hours: 1-4
Independent Study - Hours: One to four Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member. Prerequisites Consent of department head. Note May be repeated when the topic varies.

CJ 595 - Research Lit and Tech
Hours: 3
Research Literature and Techniques Students will write a formal research paper designed to broaden students’ perspectives and to provide an opportunity for the integration of course concepts. Emphasis will be placed on methods of interpretation, writing, and critical thinking related to criminal justice topics/issues. Prerequisites include permission of Department Head/Director/Advisor of Masters Program.

CJ 597 - Special Topics
Hours: 1-4
Hours: One to four - Organized class Note May be graded on a satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) basis. May be repeated when topics vary

SOC 500 - Diagnostic Exam
Hours: 0

SOC 504 - Stu Contemporary Sociolog
Hours: 3
Studies in Contemporary Sociology. Three semester hours. An in-depth study of contemporary theoretical and methodological issues in an area of study within sociology. Topics to be covered may include: suicide terrorism; teaching sociology; applied sociology; qualitative methodology; and the state of sociology. May be repeated when topics vary.

SOC 512 - Soc Perspcts Marr/Family
Hours: 3
Sociological Perspectives on Marriage and the Family. Three semester hours. A critical sociological analysis of the origin, structure, and functioning of the institutions of marriage and family in human society. Four theoretical perspectives in sociology (namely: functionalism, conflict theory, exchange theory and symbolic interactionism) will be employed for discussing and evaluating various problems and issues in marriage and family, particularly in the contemporary American society.

SOC 514 - Family Violence
Hours: 3
A thorough and critical examination of family violence from a sociological perspective. Topics include the meaning, nature, and types of family violence; biological, psychological, anthropological, and sociological theories which attempt to explain hostility, aggression, and violence among intimate people; the philosophy of non-violence; the consequences of violence; and preventive measures and strategies for dealing with violence in the family. Although the course focuses on the American family, illustrations of family violence from other cultures are provided.

SOC 515 - Medical Sociology
Hours: 3
Medical Sociology. Three semester hours. This course will examine research and theory on the changing concepts of health, illness and medical practice as well as place these understandings in socio-historical and comparative context. Topics will include: social epidemiology, the social construction of health/illness, the experience of illness, health professions, alternative medicine and the health care system. Emphasis on how social factors such as gender, race, social class and sexual preference affect both illness and health care. The course will be applicable for students in sociology, criminal justice, social work, and psychology. This course contributes 3 credit hours toward students' fulfillment of degree requirements. There is no lab or prerequisite for this course.

SOC 516 - Sociology of Education
Hours: 3
Sociology of Education. Three semester hours. A study of the structure of the social organization of the school and the social and cultural forces which influence the school and those who teach and learn in it. The classroom is analyzed as a social system with special emphasis on the role of teachers. The relationships of education to other social institutions such as the family, economy and political system are examined.

SOC 517 - Teaching Sociology and Criminal Justice
Hours: 3
This course will assist students in developing and formulating ideas, gaining practice and critically assessing information concerning community college and university teaching. In addition to the coverage of teaching literature within the field of sociology and criminal justice, the course will emphasize the development of teaching pedagogy, syllabus and test construction, teaching philosophy, and allow the student to obtain "hands-on" experience in the college classroom.

SOC 518 - Thesis
Hours: 3-6
The student will work on the thesis under the supervision of an advisory committee. Major work will include the development of a prospectus, collection, analysis and interpretation of data and the final writing of the thesis. No credit will be given until the thesis is completed and approved. Graded on a (S) satisfactory or (U) unsatisfactory basis. Prerequisites: Sociology 572, 573, 575, and 576 or permission of Department Head.

SOC 525 - Dev Am SOC Thought
Hours: 3

SOC 535 - Readings in Sociology
Hours: 3
Readings in Sociology. Three semester hours. This graduate seminar explores advanced sociological principles through the use of selected classic and contemporary readings. Students will be expected to read, synthesize, and integrate a wide variety of sociological materials and to analyze and discuss them from divergent theoretical perspectives.

SOC 537 - Collective Behav
Hours: 3

SOC 553 - Amer Subculture Groups
Hours: 3
American Subcultural Groups. Three semester hours. An examination of cultural diversity in American life, focusing particularly on Black Americans, Mexican Americans, Native American Indians, and Anglo Americans. Describes dynamics of intergroup relations; the impact of ethnicity and social class on cultural patterns; the causes and effects of racism and prejudice. Special emphasis is placed on problems and strengths of multicultural education.

SOC 572 - Classical Sociological Theory
Hours: 3
Classical Sociological Theory. Three semester hours. This course will study the classical foundation of sociology, focusing on the writings of Durkheim, Weber, Marx and Mead. Attention will be given to how these theories have given rise to the major theoretical perspectives in sociology, particularly functionalism, conflict theory and symbolic interactionism. Prerequisites: SOC 436 or its equivalent or Department Head's permission.

SOC 573 - Contemporary Sociological Theory
Hours: 3
This course will build on the foundation of classical theory to focus on the construction and application of contemporary theories used in current sociological research. The major theoretical perspectives to be studied include: neofunctionalism, neomarxism, critical theory, feminist theory, post-modernism, as well as significant theorists dating from Parsons to the more recent theorists. Emphasis will be placed on the basic assumptions of the various theories, and the relevance of these ideas for understanding contemporary society. Prerequisites: SOC 436, or its equivalent, or Department Head's permission.

SOC 575 - Adv Res Methods
Hours: 3
Advanced Research Methodology . Three semester hours. The coverage of the basic techniques and procedures used in social research process. Special attention given to defining research problems, selecting and measuring variables, stating hypotheses, developing sampling designs and gathering data. Students are exposed to methodological designs such as experimentation, observation, content analysis, evaluation research and survey research. Prerequisites: SOC 331 and 332 or their equivalents or Department Head's permission.

SOC 576 - Data Analys in the Soc Resear
Hours: 3
Data Analysis in Social Research. Three semester hours. Students are exposed to basic techniques of data analysis in social research, particularly by use of computers. Special attention is given to tabulation, statistical testing, and interpretation of data. Analysis of variance, multiple regression, dummy variable regression, path analysis and related topics will be covered with computer application for problem solving. Prerequisites: SOC 332, its equivalent, or Department Head's permission.

SOC 577 - Qualitative Methodology
Hours: 3
This course provides an introduction to the use of qualitative methods such as ethnographic research, focus groups, historical/comparative research, content analysis and grounded theory. In addition to addressing philosophical foundations, this course provides hands-on practice in the common strategies to access and collect data (e.g. observation, interviewing, archival data); methods of organizing and representing different forms/genres of data for analysis (e.g. transcripts, electronic texts, images, hand-written notes); and strategies to analyze and represent your analyses for academic audiences. Prerequisites: Sociology 331, or its equivalent, or Department Head's approval.

SOC 589 - Independent Study
Hours: 1-4
Independent Study. One to four semester hours. Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated when the topic varies. Prerequisite: Consent of Department Head.

SOC 595 - Research Literature and Techniques
Hours: 3
Students will write a formal research report based upon primary or secondary data. Emphasis will be given to methods of interpretation and writing a formal paper in sociology. Prerequisites: SOC 572, 573, 575 and 576 or permission of the Department Head.

SOC 597 - Special Topic
Hours: 3
Special Topics. One to four semester hours. Organized class. May be repeated when topics vary.

Sociology and Criminal Justice

Willie J. Edwards
Associate Professor
B.A., M.A., East Texas State University; Ph.D., University of Minnesota.

Martha Henderson Hurley
Department Head and Professor
B.A. Furman University, M.A and Ph.D, University of Cincinnati

David Hurley
Assistant Professor
B.S., University of Dayton; M.S., Ph.D., University of Cincinnati

Raghu N. Singh
Professor
B.A., M.A., Punjab University; Ph.D., Mississippi State University.

Jiaming Sun
Associate Professor
B.A., Shanghai University; M.A., Fudan University; M.A., Ph.D., University of Illinois at Chicago.

William E. Thompson
Professor
B.A., Northeastern State University; M.S.Ed., Southwest Missouri State University; Ph.D., Oklahoma State University.

Yvonne Villanueva-Russell
Associate Professor
B.A., M.A., Western Illinois University; Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia.

Elvira White-Lewis
Associate Professor
BS., North Carolina A&T State University, M.A., University of Maryland, J.D., University of Maryland School of Law, Ph.D., Prairie View A&M University.