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CJL 355-01 Crime In America
Theoretical Paper on:
Mass Shootings in America, who commits them, the punishment they usually face, why are white people who commit mass shootings treated differently and always classified as mentally ill when others who commit them are people of color or of other national origin are labeled as terrorists?
Due: October 10th (Hardcopy)
7-8 pages long
Attached are 2 sample papers
The purpose of this course is to provide a solid foundation of criminological theories by reading original works and applying them to present day issues. This paper is dedicated to exploring both sections thoroughly in a theoretical paper. Students will choose a popular criminological issue and apply it to one of the theories discussed in class.
The most important objective of this paper is to demonstrate critical thinking by applying one or more theoretical frameworks to a popular criminological issue. This means that one must go beyond the “surface” of the issue and analytically assess the issues surrounding the crime and how a theory or theories would explain the phenomena.
Students are expected to search online databases for articles that relate to their topic. It is expected that six to seven outside scholarly works in addition to course readings from respected journals or edited volumes, and reputable news sources will be used. Books from respected academic authors are also acceptable. Students should ask for help from the instructor if they are unable to locate appropriate reference materials.
My expectations are high when it comes to grammar, punctuation, and spelling. Therefore, no short cuts are allowed. This includes no contractions, no “conversational language”, and bad formatting (e.g. not indenting paragraphs, large spacing). In addition, this should be a formal paper. Therefore, “first-person” should not be used. All of this will result in a deduction of points.
Provide background information on the popular criminological issue. Issues that are appropriate for this paper include: police brutality, biological explanations of crime, poverty and crime, as well as the link between stereotypical images of people of color and how it relates to perceived criminality. This should only be a brief summary as most of your paper should be devoted to critically assessing how the topic chosen is linked to your theoretical framework. Be sure to address what you will analyze about the issue. There should be at least two to three issues of the case or topic that will be analyzed through a theoretical lens. (
Talk about the theory chosen for your issue. Include a description of the theory / theorist, theory origin and context (social, political, biological), as well as how the theory has been applied to crime in the past. (
Apply the fundamentals of the theory to the issue you have chosen to analyze. How does the theory/theories explain the crime chosen and how does it fall short of completely explaining the behavior? In addition, how might the theory predict the outcome (or potential outcome) of the crime issue chosen ? Why is this theory (or combination of theories) the best fit for your case?
1. Choose cases that you can find a great deal of information on for your paper. In order to do an in-depth analysis you must have good, solid information.
2. To help you choose the concepts you want to focus on look at the key terms given for each theorist covered in class.
Other Important Information
Please follow these instructions carefully. Points will be deducted from your written assignment for failure to do so.
Ã‚Â· The papers should be at least seven but no more than eight pages in length.
This does not include title page and references.
There is no need to include an abstract.
Ã‚Â· Papers should have 1″ margins all around.
Ã‚Â· The type font should size 12.
Ã‚Â· Must have six to seven outside scholarly sources.
DO NOT use Wikipedia, WebsterÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s dictionary or dictionary.com
as a reference.
Ã‚Â· Reference page must be in APA format. Please be sure to reference the class materials if you cite from it.
Ã‚Â· Do not include lengthy quotes. If it is longer than four sentences it must be paraphrased.
Ã‚Â· All text other than references should be double-spaced; type references in single space.
Ã‚Â· All pages except the first page should be numbered.
Ã‚Â· Be sure to include an introduction and conclusion paragraph.
Ã‚Â· There is no need for large spacing between paragraphs.
Expect at minimum fifteen point deductions for failure to follow correct format.
Be careful to avoid plagiarism. Any information taken from other sources needs to be cited. Direct quotations should be placed in quotation marks; indent quotations that are at least four lines long. All text that paraphrases the work of someone else should list the source as a citation. For this assignment you will submit it to Turnitin. Papers will be uploaded into this system to check for improper citation. Turnitin will be available starting November 1st. Students will have a month to submit their paper into the system to check for plagiarism. This will allow students to address any citation issues and resubmit their paper. Only the final submission will be counted.
If a large portion of your paper is plagiarized (over 40%) it will result in an Ã¢â‚¬Å“FÃ¢â‚¬Â for this assignment.
Submit a hardcopy. There is no need to package your paper in covers or folders. Simply staple it in the upper left corner.
Submit a copy of your paper to the Blackboard system, Turnitin.
Ã‚Â· Late submissions will be penalized according to the time overdue.
Expect a minimum of five points deducted for a late paper per day.
Keep in mind that the draft is worth fewer points.
ÃƒÂ¼ Provides a clear thesis statement;
ÃƒÂ¼ provides six to seven scholarly sources;
ÃƒÂ¼ uses appropriate course concepts and readings to fully develop ideas and arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ ideas/arguments demonstrate critical thinking, are convincing, and are thought provoking;
ÃƒÂ¼ uses well-documented and thoughtful evidence & examples to support ideas/arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ the paper and paragraphs are effectively organized – sentences are skillfully written overall writing demonstrates clarity, synthesis, and sophistication;
ÃƒÂ¼ follows proper format and is free of errors (e.g., spelling, grammar, etc.);
ÃƒÂ¼ provides two to three issues that are analyzed through a theoretical lens;
ÃƒÂ¼ provides detailed description of theory;
ÃƒÂ¼ appropriate application of theory to issue chosen;
ÃƒÂ¼ has minimal plagiarism issues (<20% in Turnitin).
ÃƒÂ¼ Demonstrates strong commitment to the assignment;
ÃƒÂ¼ provides six scholarly sources;
ÃƒÂ¼ uses appropriate course concepts and readings to develop ideas and arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ ideas/ arguments demonstrate critical thinking and are convincing;
ÃƒÂ¼ uses evidence and examples to support ideas/ arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ the paper and paragraphs are well organized – sentences are written clearly – overall writing demonstrates clarity and synthesis;
ÃƒÂ¼ follows proper format and contains very few errors (e.g., spelling, grammar, etc.);
ÃƒÂ¼ provides two issues that are analyzed through a theoretical lens;
ÃƒÂ¼ provides good description of theory;
ÃƒÂ¼ has some plagiarism issues (20-25% in Turnitin).
ÃƒÂ¼ Completes the assignment;
ÃƒÂ¼ provides five scholarly sources;
ÃƒÂ¼ uses some course concepts and readings to develop ideas and arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ ideas/ arguments demonstrate some independent thinking and are mostly convincing;
ÃƒÂ¼ lacks strong evidence and examples to support ideas/arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ the paper and paragraphs are organized, though simplistically and formulaically – overall writing is clear but may be difficult to understand;
ÃƒÂ¼ problems with formatting and /or contains some errors (e.g., spelling, grammar, etc.);
ÃƒÂ¼ provides sufficient description of theory;
ÃƒÂ¼ there is some application of theory to issue chosen;
ÃƒÂ¼ has some plagiarism issues (26-30% in Turnitin).
ÃƒÂ¼ Does not complete all parts of the assignment;
ÃƒÂ¼ no scholarly articles;
ÃƒÂ¼ does not use course concepts or readings to develop ideas and arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ ideas/ arguments do not demonstrate independent thinking and are not clear or convincing;
ÃƒÂ¼ fails to draw on evidence or examples to support ideas/ arguments;
ÃƒÂ¼ presentation lacks organization and clarity;
ÃƒÂ¼ does not use proper format and/ or contains many errors (e.g., spelling, grammar, etc.).
ÃƒÂ¼ provides one issue that is analyzed through a theoretical lens;
ÃƒÂ¼ limited description of theory;
ÃƒÂ¼ minimal application of theory to issue chosen;
ÃƒÂ¼ has significant plagiarism issues (31-40% in Turnitin).
ÃƒÂ¼ Does not complete the minimum requirements for the assignment;
ÃƒÂ¼ does not complete the assignment;
ÃƒÂ¼ major plagiarism issues (>40% in Turnitin).
Improvement from draft to final paper will be factored into final grade.
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