Remember that Walden’s Title IV Code is 025042.
Whether it’s an act of terrorism or an act of nature, officials need to know how to respond in any emergency. This includes the ability to mitigate threats, establish control, and prosecute offenders. The Criminal Justice specialization can help prepare you to ethically and effectively respond to emergency situations. You’ll explore the technology and communication you need for disaster planning and then discover how they relate to criminal activity.
This program can be completed in as little as 18 months. Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress; credits transferred, if applicable; and prerequisite courses. For a personalized estimate of your time to completion, call an enrollment advisor at 1-866-492-5336.
The program’s courses are 11 weeks in length and are delivered in a prescribed sequence.
This course introduces students to Walden University and to the requirements for successful participation in an online curriculum. Students work toward building a foundation for academic and professional success as scholar-practitioners and social change agents. They assess the relationship of mission and vision to professional goals and develop a program of study and strategies for online success. Students also explore resources used throughout the program, such as the online Walden University Library. Students engage in course assignments focused on the practical application of professional writing, critical-thinking skills, and the promotion of professional and academic excellence.
In consideration of technological innovation, terrorism, and other modern factors, threats to the American public are changing, thus requiring professionals who have the ability to identify, plan for, and mitigate crime and disaster incidents. In this course, students examine foundational public safety concepts and investigate issues faced by public safety agencies and personnel at the local, state, and national levels, including police and sheriff, emergency medical services, fire services, and related organizations. They explore and discuss the ways in which public safety organizations communicate and coordinate, and they learn why effective interaction is vital to emergency management. They also have the opportunity to gain practical experience employing tools used by public safety professionals, such as a public safety constituency matrix through which they assess competing demands on the various agencies. In this course, students work toward gaining the skills necessary to anticipate the needs of various constituents to develop effective public safety initiatives.
Students in this course examine the theories and concepts underpinning contemporary emergency management and how to understand the phenomena of natural and human-caused disasters. Students examine the historical context of emergency management, the general process of risk assessment, the emergency management cycle, communications within emergency management and crisis planning, and the general policy and legal framework surrounding the process of emergency management in the United States with a focus on the National Incident Management System (NIMS). Case studies of major catastrophes are used to explore contemporary and practical hazard management. Students can complete the FEMA Emergency Management Institute courses IS-100.b - Introduction to Incident Command System and either IS-800.b - National Response Framework: An Introduction or IS700.a - National Incident Management System as part of this course. Nationally recognized certificates are awarded for successful completion of FEMA courses.
Public safety leaders are responsible for finding solutions to major issues confronting their community and organizational operating systems through research, analysis, planning, and decision making. In this course, students assess these tools and solutions to learn the intricacies of managing public safety organizations. They engage in written assignments and discussions on a variety of topics, such as systems approaches, environmental analyses, contingency planning, implications for change, coordination, and controls. Students explore ways to apply classic business management techniques and leadership principles to public safety operations. They also apply concepts presented in the course to the development of solutions and alternatives to varied situations confronting public safety managers. Additionally, the course introduces students to concepts of “first-planner” and “first-responder.”
Organizational credibility, community trust, and fundraising are increasingly dependent upon demonstration of program effectiveness and success. This course introduces students to research and evaluation methods in the public and nonprofit sectors to study ways to measure and assess a program’s effectiveness and potential success as well as to address problems or issues in the field. Students examine the strengths, limitations, and threats to validity; models, quantitative metrics, and tools used to evaluate programs and policies; and legal and ethical issues associated with research and evaluation methods. Using these parameters and other concepts presented in the course, students critically evaluate sample research, consider ways to communicate results to an intended audience, and reflect on trends and challenges that could affect future program evaluation.
Risk assessment and mitigation are key components to effective emergency management and all-hazard planning and response. Students in this course focus on the methods and techniques required to assess an organization or government’s risk associated with the protection of human life and capital assets. They study ways to evaluate the social vulnerabilities to disaster and the special needs of at-risk populations, and they explore methods to reduce vulnerabilities and build capacity through structural and nonstructural mitigation. Additionally, students complete the FEMA Emergency Management Institute course IS-393.a: Introduction to Hazard Mitigation as part of this course.
A major concern of disaster response professionals is meeting basic and humanitarian needs of disaster-affected populations. In this course, students explore a range of issues, including evacuation, relocation, and tactical and strategic decisions in the immediate aftermath of an emergency episode. Students study important federal policies related to disaster response and recovery, including the National Response Framework (NRF), and they can gain an understanding of how local, state, and federal policies mesh in response and recovery efforts. Through their exploration, they study how recovery begins once the immediate threat of the emergency wanes and the focus shifts to restoring disaster-affected areas. As part of this course, students complete the FEMA Emergency Management Institute course IS208.a: State Disaster Management.
Students in this course are introduced to contemporary views and theories of maladaptive and criminal behavior. They examine a broad conceptualization of criminal behavior from an interdisciplinary perspective as well as theories and application of criminal profiling. Students also explore specific views of criminal behavior germane to groups, such as psychopaths, serial offenders, and sexually violent predators. At the end of this course, students will have an understanding of the theories and practices that are the foundations of the field of criminology.
Justice is at the heart of the U.S. democratic system, yet opposing viewpoints surrounding and within the system often muddle interpretations of the law and the development of policies to promote and enforce justice. In this course, students examine events that have significantly changed how the legal system interprets the U.S. Constitution, the U.S. Code, and the U.S. Patriot Act, for example, the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001. They learn how social and historical changes have shifted perspectives and sparked debates on expanding the rights of government versus safeguarding personal civil rights and civil liberties. Through discussion with peers, assessment of contemporary articles, and examination of Supreme Course cases, students have the opportunity to reflect on and potentially broaden their own opinions and perspectives on current criminal justice affairs in regard to issues of law enforcement, public perception, policy development, and ethics.
Students in this course explore the relationship of technology and criminal activity, including current trends in cybercrime. Students are exposed to a comprehensive view of cybercrime, and they study the ways law enforcement agencies use technologies to track and apprehend criminals involved in cybercrime. Students use technique scenarios for solving such crimes, thus studying ways to deal with related problems. They can also gain an understanding of legal responses for these issues. By identifying, data mining, and protecting and gathering evidence, students can gain a comprehensive understanding of solving and prosecuting cybercrimes. Additionally, students analyze techniques and tools used to build and solve cybercrime cases.
In this course, students complete a capstone project through which they apply an action research model that fosters social change in public administration or nonprofit management and leadership. Through this project, students demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and competencies acquired in their master’s degree program. Students also have the opportunity to reflect on how the project and the program have contributed to their personal, scholarly, and professional growth.
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