Note:  Please print this syllabus. Don't count on it being available online.


Faculty information (UPS item 1)

Instructor: Julius (Jay) Wachtel
Office: LH 624
Hours: W 6-6:45 pm
Tel.: (657) 278-6740 (email preferred)
E-mail: jwachtel (at)

Course information (UPS item 2)

CRJU 330, Section 06, #16435, Wednesday 7-9:45 pm, UH 335

Objective and learning goals

A social-scientific perspective is used to examine major theories in the social, behavioral, biological and economic sciences that purport to explain the causes of crime and delinquency. The theoretical basis and practical implications of crime and delinquency-prevention strategies are also analyzed.

Required text, readings and viewings

  • Bernard, Snipes and Gerould, Vold's Theoretical Criminology, Oxford University Press, Sixth Edition, 2009.
  • This website – all links on Weekly Schedule, plus Research Process and Research Designs
  • All films specified on the schedule. They will be shown in class, so attendance is very important.

Grading standards and policy, exams, paper and panel (UPS items 3, 4, 5)

Grading standards and policy

100 points can be earned: 25 for each exam, 20 for the paper and 5 for the oral presentation.

Semester grades will be assigned using the conventional scale (A=90, B=80, C=70, D=60, F=59 or lower), curved if necessary to reflect class performance.

Failure to complete any component of the course forfeits those points and may result in a term grade of "F".

No extra credit assignments will be given.

I do not use the plus/minus system.

Any instance of academic dishonesty will result in a term grade of "F" and referral to the Dean.


Three non-cumulative exams worth 25 points each that test comprehension of readings, lectures, class discussions and videos.

Fifteen points will come from thirty multiple-choice questions from the text worth 1/2 point each.  Classroom slide shows will touch upon most of these questions but are insufficient for a complete answer.

There will also be an essay question worth 10 points that will ask students to integrate theories and concepts from that part of the semester with one of the films shown during that period. Essay questions will be largely based on the oral presentations.  Taking notes during the films and presentations is the best way to prepare for the essay. Maximum response length for the essay is one page.

A makeup exam for the first or second midterm may be given for a documented emergency. Students who cannot take either of these exams on the scheduled date should e-mail. They will have one opportunity to take the make-up during the next class session; if they cannot they should drop the course.  Students cannot make up more than one of the first two exams. There are no makeups for the final.  Students who cannot legitimately take the final may at the instructor's discretion be given an "I"ncomplete.

Each exam is a mandatory component of the course. To earn a grade higher than "F" all must be taken.

Panel, paper, films

Each student will participate in a panel and turn in a paper. Please go to for detailed instructions.

Accommodations, academic integrity (UPS items 6-7)

Accomodations for documented special needs:

Academic integrity:

Emergency Instructions (UPS item 8)

Emergency instructions homepage:

Active shooters and hostage-takers – escape and shelter in place information:

  • Depending on the suspect's proximity, quickly decide whether to stay or run.
  • Either way, spread out.
  • If shelter in place, lock or barricade the door.
  • Take whatever cover is available. Use furniture to your advantage.
  • Quietly plan what to do if suspect gets in. Confronting the shooter is an option.
  • If run away, keep spread out. Use multiple routes.
  • Don't charge into arriving officers. Keep both arms visible.
  • Call 911 asap. Don't wait for others to do it.

Earthquakes and fires

  • In case of earthquake, drop and cover.
  • In case of a fire, leave immediately. Use the stairs.
  • Assembly point is the adjacent faculty parking lot.

Classroom management

Cell phones, pagers and laptops

Please set cell phones and pagers to silent mode.

Absolutely no use of laptops or other electronic devices in class.  NO recording.  Laptops and other devices are distracting to users, other students and the instructor.  Students with special needs are excepted (please bring your form on the first day of class.)  Please take notes the old-fashioned way and plan your online activities accordingly.

Why the rule?  For an illustrated reason, click here.

Schedule, including assignments and topics (UPS item 5)

Week – Date – Topic – Chapter(s) – Slide Shows – Other resources – Films

1 – 8/28 – Criminology as a science – Chp. 1 – Slide show – Research ProcessResearch Designs – "Deliver us From Evil"

2 – 9/4 – Biological theories – Chp. 3 – Slide show – "Deliver us From Evil"

3 – 9/11 – Psychological theories – Chp. 4 – Slide show – NY Times article – Prisoner mental health problems slide show – Street – "Stevie"

4 – 9/18 – Cont' d – Slide show – "Stevie"

5 – 9/25 – Panels 1-4 present – papers due

610/2 First half – Exam 1 (weeks 1-5 incl. films & panel pres.)

      Second half – Strain theories – Chp. 8 – Slide show

7 – 10/9 – Economic theories – Chp. 5 – Slide show – "I Am a Promise"

8 – 10/16 – Control theories – Chp. 10 – Slide show – "I Am a Promise"

9 – 10/23 – Prior weeks cont'd – "Hood 2 Hood: The Blockumentary" (Disc 2, Brooklyn, Los Angeles and Compton only)

1010/30Panels 5-10 present papers due

1111/6 First half – Exam 2 (weeks 6-10 incl. films & panel pres.)

       Second half – Labeling theory/meaning of crime – Chp. 11 – Slide show

12 – 11/13Conflict criminology Chp. 12 – Slide show "Latin Kings: A Street Gang Story"

13 – 11/20 – Learning theories – Chp. 9 – Slide show – "Latin Kings: A Street Gang Story"

14 11/25 – Fall recess, no classes. Please read New York Times "Gunfire Still Rules the Night".

15 – 12/4 – Panel discussion: New York Times "Gunfire Still Rules the Night" – "The Weather Underground"

16 – 12/11 – Panels 11-16 present papers due

1712/18 – 7:30-9:20 pm – Final exam (weeks 11-16 incl. films & panel pres.)