Undergraduate Certificate in the Fundamentals of Criminal Justice

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Message from the Academic Vice President:

"On behalf of the faculty and staff of California Coast University, I wish to welcome you. You have made an excellent choice for continuing your education and choosing an educational institution that will help you meet your goals. 
 
At California Coast University, we created our programs to support the learning of busy professionals seeking to deepen and to broaden their knowledge and skills; and to help our students meet both professional and personal goals.  We look forward to helping you find success on your educational journey!"  
Patricia Insley, Ed.D.,
Academic Vice President

 

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Undergraduate Certificate in the Fundamentals of Criminal Justice

The undergraduate certificate program in the Fundamentals of Criminal Justice is designed to expose students to the fundamental facts and workings of the criminal justice system. Students will be introduced to procedures in the legal system, learn the required steps in criminal investigations and receive an overview of general judicial principles. Students will acquire knowledge that is readily applicable to their professional interests in the field of law and criminology.

Courses required are listed below. Please click on the course to read a description.

plus-sign BCJ 100 Introduction to Criminal Justice

3 Semester Units

Introduction to Criminal Justice provides an introduction to the criminal justice system. The primary goal of this course is to develop a general understanding of the criminal justice system’s response to crime in society. It is important to note that the general theme of this course involves the delicate balance between community interests and individual rights that criminal justice decision making requires. This theme will be explored by examining the criminal justice process in some detail, focusing on how the system is structured to respond to crime.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand criminal justice as the system of law enforcement, taking into account both theory and practice
  • Explain both positions in the individual rights versus public-order debate
  • Discuss the various theories dealing with the causes of crime
  • Discuss the development of law in Western democracies
  • Describe situations in which law enforcement officials may be required to use force and create guidelines to determine whether or not excessive force has been used
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of public versus private prisons
  • Understand how advances in technology stimulate social change.
  • Explain the relationship between drug abuse, social problems and crime.

 

plus-sign BCJ 230 Criminal Investigation

3 Semester Units

Juvenile Justice is an overview of the criminal investigation field. To gain information related to crimes, course topics cover specific techniques for conducting a preliminary investigation, gather evidence and make arrests. Students also learn the procedures for interviewing witnesses and suspects, processing crime scenes and conducting a basic forensic examination of evidence. The course may include practice in writing up reports from crime scenes.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand rules of evidence and arrest.
  • Discuss the investigating of major crimes including crimes of violence, sexual assaults, robbery, arson, bombing, hate crimes, burglary and the drug scene.
  • Discuss the process of basic investigative leads and informants.
  • Know the process of control of a crime scene, crime scene investigation, recording the crime scene and locating witnesses.

 

plus-sign BCJ 240 Procedures in the Justice System

3 Semester Units

Procedures in the justice system introduces students to the procedural aspects of the criminal justice system systematically, making the concepts easy to apply to any state’s specific procedural laws. Detailed coverage of the Exclusionary Rule and Miranda procedures will be presented, and a balanced coverage of consensual encounter, detention, and arrest will be explored.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Discuss the law of constitutional criminal procedures.
  • Understand criminal procedures in its social, political, and historical contexts.
  • Review the purposes and rules that emerge from cases.

 

plus-sign BCJ 351 Forensic Science

3 Semester Units

Forensic Science is designed to make the subject of forensic science comprehensible to a wide variety of students who are, or plan to be, aligned with the forensic science profession.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Define and distinguish forensic science and criminalistics.
  • Describe proper techniques for packaging common types of physical evidence.
  • Understand the difference between qualitative and quantitative analysis.
  • Understand the use of DNA computerized databases in criminal investigation.

 

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