A Degree in Criminology student reading a book in the library

Criminology Courses

Note 1: VIU Criminology Diploma and B.A. students receive first priority for seats in Criminology courses.

Course offerings vary from year to year. Check Generate a Timetable for available course offerings.

CRIM 101 (3) Intro to Criminology

An introduction to the basic concepts, theories and methodology in criminology. Topics include the central ideas of crime and criminology, classical and modern theories of criminal behaviour and their social policy implications, crime typologies, and the criminal justice system. Credit will only be granted for one of INTR 102 or CRIM 101. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Min. "C" in English 12.

CRIM 103 (3) Psycho-social Explanations of Criminality

A survey of biogenetic, psychiatric, and psychological explanations of anti-social behaviour. Topics include the theoretical and empirical links between criminality and genetics, physiology, mental disorders, personality, moral development, and social learning. Credit will only be granted for one of PSYC 103,INTR 104 or CRIM 103. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None. (CRIM 101 or INTR 102, PSYC 111, and PSYC 112 highly recommended.)

CRIM 131 (3) Intro to the Criminal Justice System

An examination of the structure and operation of the police, courts and corrections, including the relationship between the various components of the criminal justice system and community agencies. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Min. "C" in English 12.

CRIM 135 (3) Intro to Canadian Law and Legal Institutions: A Criminal Justice Perspective

An introduction to the principles of jurisprudence and the legal institutions of Canada. Topics include the history of Canadian law, the development of the Canadian constitution, Canadian courts and the legal profession, the nature of legal reasoning, the doctrine of precedent, principles of statutory interpretation, constitutional law, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, contract, torts, administrative and family law, and the process of law reform in Canada. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Min. "C" in English 12.

CRIM 200 (3) Aboriginal Issues in the Canadian Criminal Justice System

A survey of contemporary topics as they pertain to Native issues in the Canadian criminal justice system. This includes historical linkages to Native justice issues today, public perceptions of Natives and crime, government inquiries into miscarriages of justice, traditional systems of social control, the criminal law, developments in Native policing, aboriginal courtworkers, the over-representation of Natives in corrections, and possibilities through self government. Focuses on historical, sociological and cultural perspectives as they pertain to aboriginal peoples, deviance, crime and social control. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 204 (3) Deviance, Crime and Social Control

A survey of various sociological explanations of anti-social behaviour. The relationship between theories, research and criminal justice policy are explored. Topics include youth crime, drug abuse, mental disorders, marginalization, sexuality, moral panics, religion and themedia. Credit will only be granted for one of SOCI 240 or CRIM 204. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 101 or INTR 102.

CRIM 210 (3) Law, Youth and Young Offenders

An analysis of the nature, prevalence, consequences, and control of youth crime. Topics include the decline of "juvenile delinquency," the emergence of "young offenders", and the Youth Criminal Justice Act. Analyzes the scientific explanations for crime and the relative effectiveness of preventing and responding to antisocial behaviour. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 213 (3) Gender, Crime and Justice

A critical examination of gender specific characteristics of female criminal behaviour and social reactions to it. Topics encompass specific types of female criminality, gender-specific pathways into criminal behaviour, the penal regulation of criminalized women and girls, and prospects for social change. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 220 (3) Research Methods in Criminology

An introduction to criminological research and the methods used to collect data, focusing on scientific inquiry, research techniques, theory construction and data analysis. Credit will only be granted for one of PSYC 204, SOCI 250, SSID250, OR CRIM 220. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 101 or INTR 102 or completion of any 100-level course in Anthropology, Geography, Political Studies, Psychology, or Sociology.

CRIM 230 (3) Criminal Law

A study of the nature, purpose, scope and application of the criminal law in Canada. Topics include the legal concepts of actus reus, mens rea, criminal responsibility, and legal defenses. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 135.

CRIM 241 (3) Intro to Corrections

An analysis of the development and operation of correctional systems in Canada. Issues include the relationship between inmates and prison staff, community-based corrections and treatment programs. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 251 (3) Intro to Policing

An examination of the history, organization, structure, and operation of contemporary Canadian law enforcement agencies with emphasis on the police role, occupational sub-culture, legal powers, and the exercise of discretion. Topics include recruitment and training of police officers, police accountability, the development of police-community relations, and community policing programs. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 290 (3) Alternative Conflict Resolution in Criminal Justice Systems

A survey of the ideology, assumptions, theories, and practices informing alternative conflict resolution models emerging in various criminal justice systems around the world. The course examines evaluations of models such as accountability boards, healing circles, restorative justice, family conferences, victim-offender mediation, and similar programs that involve accused persons. (2:1:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 297 (3) Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program: Critical Issues in the Justice System

An in-depth experiential course bringing together students who are currently incarcerated with those who are not incarcerated to learn about critical issues related to the criminal justice system. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 299 (3) Current Topics in Criminology

An exploration of current topics in criminology. Topics vary by semester. Interested students should contact the instructor or department chair for more information. Students may take a total of 9 credits from the Criminology Department's Selected Topics offerings as long as they are on different topics. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 301 (3) Trauma, Resilience, and the Justice System

This course prepares students for trauma-informed practice with individuals, groups and communities related to the criminal justice system. Students will learn how trauma impacts the lives and experiences of individuals, groups, and communities, and explore ways to integrate trauma-informed approaches into their work and personal lives. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Second-year standing or of permission instructor.

CRIM 321 (3) Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Policy

An investigation of past and contemporary Canadian and US crime prevention policies. Topics include crime prevention through deterrence, social development, environmental design, law reform, evaluation research, and the wider political and social conditions in which policies are developed. Credit will only be granted for one of CRIM 420 or CRIM 321. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 131.

CRIM 330 (3) Advanced Topics in Criminal Law and Procedure

A critical examination of the processes and procedures a criminal case follows from the point of initial arrest to the ultimate disposition. Advanced topics include jurisdiction, police powers of arrest, search and seizure, bail, the right to counsel, pre-trial and trial procedures, admissibility of evidence, juries, sentencing and appeals. CRIM 330 was formerly called CRIM 430; credit will not be granted for both courses. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 135 and CRIM 230.

CRIM 334 (3) Law and Society

A critical examination of the interplay between law and society focusing on the functions of law as social control, dispute resolution, and social change. Topics include: socio-legal theoretical perspectives; the organization of law and perspectives on lawmaking; minority rights and equality; and social science research and law. CRIM 334 was formerly called CRIM 390; credit will not be granted for both courses. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 135.

CRIM 350 (3) Qualitative Research Methods

The course prepares students to use qualitative methods and analysis for conducting social research. Topics include qualitative interviewing, content analysis, observation, field research, and participatory action research. Credit will only be granted for one of SOCI 350, SOCI 375A, PSYC 304 or CRIM 350. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and either CRIM 220, PSYC 204, SOCI 250, or SSID 250.

CRIM 351 (3) Quantitative Research Methods

An examination of quantitative methods for conducting research. Topics include conceptualization, literature reviews, developing testable hypotheses, operationalizing variables, and data analysis using bivariate and multivariate techniques with Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). Credit will only be granted for one of SOCI 351, PSYC 300A or CRIM 351. (2:0:1)

Prerequisite: MATH 161 or MATH 211 and one of CRIM 220, PSYC 204, SSID 250, or SOCI 250.

CRIM 360 (3) Advanced Criminological Theory

An exploration of recent empirical and theoretical work in criminology since 1980, especially integrated, multi-factor, integrated-structural, life course, evolutionary, biological, developmental, 'latent trait', routine activities and deterrence theories. Critique of positivistic science, penology and the correctionalist paradigm through Marxist, feminist and post-modernist discourse and research. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102.

CRIM 391 (3) Directed Studies in Criminology

Independent legal or social science studies for advanced students. Prior to registration, complete arrangements must be made with an instructor in the department who will act as an academic supervisor. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 131 and CRIM 135; and one of CRIM 220, PSYC 204, SSID 250, OR SOCI 250; and/or permission of supervising instructor and Department Chair.

CRIM 400 (3) Law and Human Rights

An examination of legal rights and their implementation in provincial human rights codes, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and international law. Topics include historical development rights to protect individual autonomy and group differences. Emphasis is on the Canadian experience with the Charter and the problems of balancing the claims of rights holders with the legitimate objectives of democratic governments. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 135.

CRIM 420 (3) Green Criminology and Environmental Law

This course begins by reviewing Canada's environmental record. Eco-philosophy, eco-justice, environmental social construction, and political-economic theories of environmental harm are examined. The strengths and weaknesses of federal and provincial environmental laws are considered in relation to species, air, water, and land. The course concludes, offering prescriptions for environmental reform. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Second-year standing or permission of instructor.

CRIM 435 (3) Charter Issues in Criminal Law

An in-depth examination of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as it applies to Criminal Law in Canada. Topics include Charter issues on arrest and detention, search and seizure, right to counsel, and delay. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 230.

CRIM 440 (3) Alternate Conflict Resolution and Negotiation Skills

A balance of theory and practical application to equip students with the aptitude for negotiation skills necessary to resolve conflicts in a work setting. Focus on different processes such as negotiations, mediation, victim-offender mediation and circle sentencing, using skills such as active listening, probing, re-framing, assertiveness and reducing defensiveness by managing the emotional climate. (0:1:2)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 131.

CRIM 450 (3) Criminal Justice Systems: An International Perspective

An exploration of criminal justice systems in different countries to understand their respective historical, political, socioeconomic and cultural influences. Focus is on the respective legal foundations, policing, adjudication forums, and official sanctions within each country. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 131.

CRIM 460 (3) Drugs, Crime, and Criminal Justice

This course examines drug use and abuse in society, the relationship between drugs and crime, and the legal and policy response of the Canadian criminal justice system to drug use. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: Third-year standing

CRIM 470 (3) Dynamics of Terrorism

An evaluation of evolving forms of terror which pose a threat to nation states and global security. The historical, political and ideological origins of domestic and international terrorism in the Americas, Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East are explored, along with contemporary reactions to terrorism. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 131 and CRIM 135.

CRIM 473 (3) Capstone Research Project Preparation and Proposal

An examination of some aspect of criminology by designing a research proposal and obtaining approval from VIU's Research Ethics Board if required. Students complete a detailed proposal that includes a comprehensive literature review and research design. Arrangements are subject to approval by faculty supervisor, department chair, and the Dean. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: All third-year CRIM courses must be completed

CRIM 475 (6) Justice Capstone Tutorial and Field Placement

An opportunity for supervised work experience with a justice-related employer supplemented with tutorials to integrate Criminology program outcomes with work experience. This course links earlier content to work with a focus on professionalism and challenges unique to careers in the justice system. Seminal readings and personal reflection are emphasized. Criminal Record Check may be required (at student's expense). (0:1.5:0 -208)

Prerequisite: All third-year CRIM courses must be completed, CRIM 474 or INTP 300.

CRIM 476 (6) Capstone Research Project

A detailed study conducted by one student based on a proposal submitted for CRIM 473. Students collect and analyze data under the supervision of a faculty member. Upon completion, students share their findings in a written research report and public presentation. (0:6:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 473

CRIM 480 (3) Organizational Crime: A Global Perspective

An examination of international criminal gangs, transnational corporations, and the modern state. These entities are examined against domestic/international laws restricting their activities, the extent of the harms they facilitate, and enforcement/compliance issues. Theories from critical criminology provide the main framework for understanding organizational crimes. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 135.

CRIM 491 (3) Directed Studies in Criminology

Independent or continuing legal and social science studies for advanced students. Prior to registration, complete arrangements must be made with an instructor in the department who will act as an academic supervisor. (0:3:0)

Prerequisite: CRIM 391 and/or permission of supervising instructor and Department Chair.

CRIM 497 (3) Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program: Advanced Topics

An in-depth experiential course bringing together students who are currently incarcerated with those who are not incarcerated to learn about advanced topics and issues related to justice. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: None.

CRIM 499 (3) Selected Topics in Criminology

Students will examine a selected topic in criminology, justice or law. Students should check with the department or with registration to determine the substantive area of study for a particular semester. Students may enroll in this course in different areas for a maximum of nine credits. (3:0:0)

Prerequisite: One of CRIM 101 or INTR 102; and CRIM 131 and CRIM 135; or permission of the instructor.