Teaching Criminological Theory and Research Methods Simultaneously at a Small, Teaching Oriented College

Evans Eze, Coppin State College
Richard C. Monk, Coppin State College

ABSTRACT
Increasing specialization in research and teaching characterizes almost all disciplines including criminology and criminal justice. However, at many smaller colleges and universities with less than a handful of full time faculty members, instructors are expected to teach not only three or four different courses each semester but to teach courses having little direct bearing on their speciic training and interests.

Based upon teaching over 200 students in small classes in Criminology Research and Crim Theory over the past six semesters, this discussion compares the experiences of two separate teachers who both teach theory and methods, often simultaneously and to the same students.

Relevant issues for discussion include: (a) keeping theory and methods distinct (obviously both are needed in research but generally the orientation, the textbooks, and student expectations are quite different); (b) basic comparisons of student performances who took one course first and those taking both courses at the same time and (c) general discussion based both on the empirical cases of our school and the literature of the advantages and disadvantages of eclectic teaching within criminology and ciminal justice.

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Updated 05/20/2006