Research Methods in Criminal Justice

The Chief wants to measure citizen satisfaction with the police. The Sheriff wants to determine the fear of crime in the community. The Mayor wants to know if the time and money devoted to your agency’s crime suppression program has had any measurable impact on the town’s crime rate, and the City Manager wants your department to prepare a formal proposal to obtain state or federal grant funds.

How will these and similar tasks be accomplished? Through the examination of quantitative and qualitative information, through the preparation, dissemination, and evaluation of surveys, and through the use of scientific methods of inquiry that are designed to separate fact from fiction and truth from mere perception. In short, these tasks will be accomplished by research!

Given the current economic climate, we no longer have the luxury of taking a “shotgun approach” to the delivery of police services. Today’s police administrators must know they are not only doing the right things, but that they are doing things right. That is, they must KNOW that the programs they implement are indeed effective in reducing crime, they must KNOW that they are addressing actual—as opposed to simply perceived—causes of crime, and they must KNOW that they are allocating resources in such a way as to maximize their return on investment.

As such, the need for the use of research methodology to provide agency administrators with this knowledge has never been higher and the demand for people who can do it has never been greater. Regardless of your role within your organization, your participation in the Research Methods in Criminal Justice course will provide you with knowledge you can use to heighten the effectiveness and efficiency of your agency. Upon completion, you will have the tools to design and implement scholarly research projects, the skills to acquire and analyze data, and the confidence to employ scientific principles to justify your conclusions. Armed with the results of your work, you will now have the ability to provide your fellow administrators, officers, and investigators with objective information they can use to address a wide variety of law enforcement concerns.

This is a 40-hour “hands-on” program that provides you with techniques you can use immediately to solve real-world problems. Since research involves the assembling and examining of many facts, the process and results of research, as presented in this course, can be used to mobilize people to meet new challenges, to enhance policies, and to gain a decided advantage in the fight against crime. Further, this course provides useful and exciting insights into not only the traditional crime problems facing agencies today, but into the use of a variety of strategies to deal with new or emerging issues as well.

This online course provides you with the flexibility to complete its requirements from anywhere at any time. Presented in a comfortable environment that encourages both individualized and group instruction, this course blends effective learning strategies with the flexibility needed by the busy criminal justice professional. An internet connection is all that is required to enjoy the easy-to-use online classroom that presents the course in an engaging and meaningful format. You can complete the program from home, work, or any place convenient for you and your schedule.

You Should Attend If

  • You are a crime or intelligence analyst
  • You supervise analytical personnel or analytical functions
  • You are a police planner (sworn or civilian)
  • You are a patrol officer, community policing officer, crime prevention officer, intelligence officer, investigator, or a patrol or investigative supervisor that acquires, uses, or presents data/information as a part of your job
  • You are in the law enforcement profession and would benefit from the knowledge gained in this course
Here’s What You Will Learn This course will allow you to learn—and demonstrate knowledge of—research methods within the criminal justice field. Focus is placed on becoming acquainted with the range and scope of tools available to the criminal justice researcher. We will demystify the essential professional skills involving:
  • Pure Versus Applied Research
  • Qualitative and Quantitative Research
  • Researchese: The Language of Research
  • Concepts, Operationalization, and Variables
  • Research Problem Formulation
  • Research Ethics and Professionalism
  • The Researcher Versus Law Enforcement Role
  • Avoiding Ethical Problems and Harming Respondents
  • The Experimental Model and Research Design
  • Rival Causal Factors: Internal and External
  • The Classic Experimental Design
  • Probability and NonProbability Samples
  • Mail and Internet Surveys
  • Properly Creating and Delivering Surveys
  • Advantages and Disadvantages of Interviews
  • Telephone Surveys and Interviews
  • Participant Observation and Case Studies
  • Unobtrusive Measures and Secondary Analysis
  • Validity, Reliability, and Triangulated Strategies
  • Use of Thurstone Scales, Likert Scales, and Guttman Scales
  • Indexing, Levels of Measurement, and Statistics
  • Data Analysis, Table Reading, and Graphic Presentations
  • Sources of Useful Law Enforcement Information
  • How to Conduct Productive Internet Searches
  • How to Interpret the Research of Others
  • How to Design and Implement a Research Project
  • How to Prepare the Final Written Research Report
  • And Much, Much, More!
Cost and Duration This course has a tuition fee of $595 USD. Students are granted 6 weeks of access to complete this course.

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