Criminal Justice (LAW)

LAW 500  Basic Forensic Pathology and Death Investigation     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Spring.

Course Description: A required course for the Certificate and Masters Program designed to present the basic topics in forensic pathology. These topics include manner, cause and mechanism of death, sharp force trauma, blunt force trauma, gunshot wounds, child abuse, deaths from drug abuse, motor vehicular deaths, sex-related deaths, and sudden-unexpected deaths. Students will attend a series of forensic autopsies to observe the role of this procedure in determining the cause, manner, and mechanism of death.

LAW 505  Research Methods in Criminal Justice     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Spring.

Course Description: A required course for the Masters Program provides a comprehensive overview of key methods of evaluation and research in criminal justice. This includes essential components to consider prior to evaluation; such as organizational mission and ethical dilemmas. Techniques of sampling, data gathering, and evaluation will be demonstrated via classroom application and academic resources. Academic writing skills will be generated within the framework of a research propposal. Requirement will be waived for students with comparable credit or suitable professional experience, to be determined by the director.

LAW 510  Bloodstain Pattern Analysis in Violent Crimes     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This course is a combination of lecture and laboratory experiences. It is designed so that the student understands the physics of bloodstains and what forces act on blood in forming bloodstains. At the completion of the course, students should be able to analyze bloodstains found at the scenes of various crimes and determine the angles of impact, directionality of impact, and velocty of impact, pattern transfer and phography of bloodstains.

LAW 520  Quantitative Analysis in Criminal Justice     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Masters Program, quantitative analysis bridges the gap between evaluation and policy implication by providing the student experience utilizing, interpreting, and presenting statistics and statistical models. A key component of this course will be examining restrictions on data and matching the appropriate statistical technique to the date source. Requirement will be waived for students with comparable credit or suitable professional experience, to be determined by the director. Prerequisite(s): LAW 505.

LAW 525  Forensic Anthropology for Law Enforcement     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Masters Program designed to allow the student to study human skeletal material and determine basic information from this material. Topics include establishing age, sex, race, stature, and other individual characteristics from skeletal remains. Special lectures on recognition of trauma, common bone diseases, and the taphonomy of bone will also be provided. Laboratory exercises will allow student groups to analyze forensic cases to reinforce lecture material.

LAW 530  Human Remains: Search, Recovery, and Identification     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This course provides the student with a series of lectures and field experiences in the various methods of the recovery of human skeletal remains. Lecture topics include recovery techniques, map reading, scene documentation, and basic forensic anthropology to aid in identification. Forensic odontology, forensic radiology, and other basic methods of identification will also be presented. Field experiences on recovery and documentation of surface scenes, grave scenes, and fire scenes will be provided to support principals discussed in lecture.

LAW 535  Introduction to Computer Forensics     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This course will cover the basic concepts of computer forensics including computer file systems, file attributes and data structures. Processes and procedures to recover and interpret digital evidence will be discussed. The legal theory and evolution of the field will be covered in depth.

LAW 540  Forensic Entomology     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A course designed to provide students with the basic concepts of forensic entomology. Topics covered will include insect identification, proper specimen sampling and collection of field data, and the importance of collecting, preserving, and rearing immature forms of insects of forensic interest. Field exercises using animal models will be used to reinforce lecture topics.

LAW 600  Criminal Law, Evidence and Legal Procedures     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Certificate Program and the Masters Degree introducing the student to the basic principles of criminal law as it applies to physical and biological evidence and the presentation of this evidence in court. Other topics will include the role and qualifications of the expert witness, rules of evidence, maintaining a chain of custody, and administrative procedures that apply to the forensic scientist and courtroom presentations.

LAW 610  Moot Court     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This course is designed to prepare the student for courtroom testimony. Prosecution and defense attorneys will serve as instructors. Topics include examination of expert witnesses, admissibility of evidence, maintaining a chain of custody, use of notes and reports while on the witness stand, and courtroom ethics and protocol.

LAW 615  Forensic Photography and Crime Scene Investigation     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A course designed to provide the student with the basic concepts of crime scene photography and documentation. Special lectures will be given on use of Polaroids, videotaping, copy stand photography, bloodstain documentation, tool mark analysis, and court presentations. Staged crime scenes will be used to support the concepts provided in lecture. These scenes will be designed to allow the student to photograph and document difficult pieces of evidence such as bloodstain patterns. Group discussions and critiques will also allow participants to present their assessments and scene evaluations to the class and instructors.

LAW 620  Analysis of Biological Evidence     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Certificate Program and the Masters Degree, this course presents a series of lectures given by invited experts in biological evidence. Topics include collecting biological evidence, examination of hair, DNA evidence, and the analysis of blood and other body fluids. This course will allow students to be introduced to the latest developments in the fields of biological evidence. A series of landmark cases will be used to illustrate the role of this type of evidence in forensic science.

LAW 625  Crime Reconstruction and Forensic Case Management     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the advanced concepts that are used to manage complex forensic investigations. The use of math and physics in bloodstain pattern analysis, shooting event reconstruction, and crash site reconstruction will be covered. The history of event reconstruction as a scientific field will be studied with a more thorough look at general crime scene reconstruction. No case is worked in a vacuum and this class will dissect the management of major case events (ex. school shootings, multiple victim homicides) as well as task force investigated pattern crimes (ex. serial robberies, serial burglaries). All concepts will be partnered with relevant real-life casework examples and historical cases. An introduction to the concept of crime analysis will be included as well as the relevance to the study of pattern crime tracking.

LAW 630  Analysis of Physical Evidence     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Certificate Program and the Masters Degree, this course presents a series of lectures by invited experts in physical evidence. Topics include collecting physical evidence, fingerprints, tool marks, ballistics, and fiber analysis. This course will allow students to be introduced to the latest developments in the field of physical evidence. A series of landmark cases will be used to illustrate the role of this type of evidence in forensic science.

LAW 635  Internet Commerce Fraud and Investigation     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This course will expose the student to the wide range of criminal activity committed, facilitated and enhanced by digital technology and its effect on commerce such as digital terrorism; viruses and malicious code; digital laws and legislation; information security and infrastructure protection. Students will also be expected to put themselves in the theoretical position of company executive, school official or other decision maker to devise means to secure and prevent degradation in the ability to conduct commerce via digital means as well as protect users and institutions.

LAW 650  Advanced Research Methods     Credits: 3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: A required course for the Masters Program designed to provide students with advanced research methods, statistics and design. As part of this course, students will be required to attend the annual meeting of the American Academy of Forensic Science, attend a pre-determined number of presentations, and submit a written critical review of the presentations and the published abstracts. Prerequisite(s): Grade of C or higher in LAW 505 and LAW 525, or consent of instructor.

LAW 670  Graduate Internship     Credits: 1-3

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: This Internship is a one to three credit hour course that is an applied learning experience for the Certificate or the Master's of Applied Science Degree in Forensic Investigations. It requires the student to engage in a field experience of at least 150 hours, provide documentation and evaluation of work experience, participate in online discussions, and develop a paper which is of publishable quality.

LAW 680  Research and Publication     Credits: 1-6

Typically Offered: Departmental Discretion.

Course Description: Designed to allow students to develop independent research projects or case studies. Students should select an advisor or advisors with expertise appropriate for the proposed project. The culmination of the project is the presentation of the work at a regional or national meeting and acceptance for publication in a recognized professional journal. Research projects are usually awarded 3 hours credit, and case studies 1 hour credit for each case. Students are limited to three case studies for credit. Offered on demand.