Criminology studies the etiology, prevention, control, and treatment of crime and criminal behavior. Traditionally, this field of study has been closely aligned with the discipline of sociology, and the focus has been on the social origins of crime and criminal behavior, as well as societal reactions towards it. The criminology program at Holy Names University is interdisciplinary in nature. It consists of a combination of sociology and psychology coursework, as well as several courses dealing specifically with the subject of crime and criminal justice.
The major has a requirement of 30 upper division units, plus an additional 12 units of preparation. These courses are designed to give the students a broad overview of the criminal justice system and an array of theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches to the study of crime and constructive intervention to criminal behavior. Within the major, students may pursue a “forensic psychology” concentration, which provides a greater emphasis on psychology coursework, or a more generalist program, which substitutes more sociology coursework. The program’s research focus provides a foundation for leadership and analytic positions. In adherence to the mission of HNU, the overall program is concerned with promoting social justice and the common good for those working within the criminal justice system.
To these ends, students who graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology will be able to 1) Use criminological, sociological, psychological theories to analyze and understand crime and criminal behavior. 2) Describe the social-historical context of crime and criminal behavior, including its legal, social and economic dimensions within the United States and internationally. 3) Describe the goals, application and legal processes of the agencies comprising the criminal justice system and criminal law. 4) Explain the relationship between social justice and criminal justice. 5) Apply social scientific research methods to the study of crime and criminal behavior. 6) Critically analyze policy responses to crime and criminological research. 7) Apply criminological knowledge and skills in the community, public service, and/or advanced study. 8) Utilize technology in the study of crime and criminal behavior. 9) Effectively communicate orally and in writing.
The Criminology major prepares students for work in the specific areas of law enforcement or probations, juvenile justice, the courts, corrections, or victim services, as well as graduate work in sociology, forensic and counseling psychology, social work and the law. In keeping with the mission of HNU, the overall program is concerned with promoting social justice and the common good for those working within the criminal justice system.