Course

Psychological Explanations of Criminal Behaviour

Faculty
Humanities & Social Sciences
Department
Criminology
Course Code
CRIM 2251
Credits
3.00
Semester Length
15
Max Class Size
35
Method(s) Of Instruction
Lecture
Hybrid
Typically Offered
To be determined

Overview

Course Description
This course will examine psychological approaches to explaining recidivist criminal behaviour. The principal objective for this course is to critically examine some of the historical and contemporary theories that relate to the understanding of deviant and/or criminal acts. The relationship between theory, research, and practice will be explored using theoretical and empirical approaches to examine offending behaviours such as property and/or violent crimes.
Course Content

The following outline guides the design and delivery of this course:

  • Introduction to psychological perspectives that explain deviant and criminal behaviour. 
    • Definitions, Research Trends, and Critiques 
  • Identification, explanation, and critical examination of psychological theory including:
    • Psychoanalytic/Psychodynamic Theory
    • Behaviourism
    • Developmental Factors
    • Biological Factors (i.e. genetics, psychophysiological factors, neurophysiological concepts)
    • Learning and Situational Factors
    • Social Cognitive Theory
  • Identification, explanation, and critical examination using psychological theory of topics including:
    • Psychopathy
    • Mental Health (the relationship between mental disorder and criminality)
    • Human Aggression/Violence (including homicide and multicide)
    • Sexual Offences (i.e. paraphilias, pedophilia, sexual assault)
    • Dangerousness (predicton of / risk assessment)
    • Youth Crime
    • Other Current Topics
Learning Activities

The course will employ a variety of instructional methods to accomplish its objectives, which may include:

  • Lectures
  • Group discussions and exercises
  • Student presentations
  • Audio-visual materials
  • Use of Blackboard
Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College Evaluation Policy.  The instructor will provide a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of the semester. 

Typical means of evaluation will include a combination of:  

  1. Written Assignments
  2. Class Presentations
  3. Examinations
  4. Term Paper
  5. Classroom Contribution (Participation) 

An example of one possible evaluation scheme would be:

Two Mid-Semester Exams (25% each)  50%
Final Exam  25%
Research Paper  25%
Total 100%

Students may conduct research with human participants as part of their coursework in this class. Instructors for the course are responsible for ensuring that student research projects comply with College policies on ethical conduct for research involving humans.

Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course, the successful student will be able to:

  1. Identify and discuss various psychologically based theoretical explanations of criminal behaviour.
  2. Critically examine psychological theories of crime.
  3. Explain, from different psychological theoretical approaches, how criminal behaviour is acquired and maintained.
  4. Critically evaluate and assess empirical research of criminal behaviour.

 

Textbook Materials

Course texts such as the most recent edition of the following will be used.

Bartol, C. and Bartol A. (2017). Criminal Behaviour: A Psychosocial Approach, (11th ed.). Toronto, Ont: Pearson Education Limited.

Relevant journal articles and research will be included.  

 

Requisites

Prerequisites

Corequisites

No corequisite courses.

Equivalencies

No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

These are for current course guidelines only. For a full list of archived courses please see https://www.bctransferguide.ca

Institution Transfer Details for CRIM 2251
Camosun College (CAMO) CAMO PSYC 252 (3)
Capilano University (CAPU) CAPU CRIM 2XX (3)
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU CRIM 2330 (3)
Langara College (LANG) LANG CRIM 2XXX (3)
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU CRIM 103 (3)
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU PSYC 2XXX (3)
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU HUMA 2XX (3)
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO SOCI 2nd (3)
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV SOCI 2nd (3)
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC PSYC 2XX (3)
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV CRIM 105 (3)
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC PSYC 2XX (1.5)

Course Offerings

Winter 2023

CRN
Days
Dates
Start Date
End Date
Instructor
Status
CRN
13026
Fri
Start Date
-
End Date
Start Date
End Date
Instructor Last Name
Mathesius
Instructor First Name
Jeffrey
Course Status
Waitlist
Section Notes

See Legal Studies (LGST) for other university transferable law and legal system courses.

Max
Enrolled
Remaining
Waitlist
Max Seats Count
35
Actual Seats Count
34
1
Actual Wait Count
18
Days
Building
Room
Time
Fri
Building
Coquitlam - Bldg. B
Room
B2050
Start Time
12:30
-
End Time
15:20
CRN
Days
Dates
Start Date
End Date
Instructor
Status
CRN
13444
Thu
Start Date
-
End Date
Start Date
End Date
Instructor Last Name
Lyon
Instructor First Name
David
Course Status
Waitlist
Section Notes

See Legal Studies (LGST) for other university transferable law and legal system courses

Max
Enrolled
Remaining
Waitlist
Max Seats Count
35
Actual Seats Count
35
0
Actual Wait Count
22
Days
Building
Room
Time
Thu
Building
New Westminster - North Bldg.
Room
N3412
Start Time
18:30
-
End Time
21:20