As a criminologist, you will be required to analyze crime from multiple angles to explain why it is occurring. As you have learned over the past several weeks, crime can be defined at different levels and even the definition of what crime can vary. Theories of crime causation are employed at the individual, the small group, the neighborhood, the city, and the larger society. You will use your research and analytic abilities to study real criminal cases and make sense of them. After you have written your report, you will create a brief presentation on your research and analysis.
Midterm Project Goals (Worth 100 points):
- Thoroughly understand several theories that could come from up to three different criminological perspectives that we have covered in class. (Worth 30 points)
- Apply theory to historical and contemporary crime by using the fbi.gov’s website to identify a past case or a group of cases, such as the Hurricane Katrina string of fraud cases:
Once you have selected a case or a case that belongs to a group of cases, you will need to explain the crime using victim, rational choice, and social structure theories. (Worth 30 points)
- In addition to the use of the FBI’s case locate a recent crime that has occurred on Boston.com or a similar newspaper company and applies the victim, rational choice, and social structure theories to the offense described in your newspaper article. (Worth 30 points)
- Prepare a brief presentation covering each theory you choose from the different perspectives and how you applied the specific theories to a historical and recent criminal case. (Worth 10 points)
To sufficiently achieve your project goals, you will need to answer the following questions:
- Using your Criminology textbook, what are the critical theories of each perspective we have covered? Be sure to introduce each perspective, and explain the critical assumptions of each perspective by stating the name of theory, which theorist developed it, what are the concepts, and the reported relationship between the ideas that lead towards crime.
- After you have identified several theories, compare and contrast the theories. Do some theories seem to explain certain types of crime better than others? Is there a weakness or particular strength that you can identify?
- Do the theories explain all crime types and crime committed by all kinds of people or do they seem more specific?
- After you have sufficiently explained your theories, summarize two criminal cases. Be sure to identify all of the essential aspects of the crime including who the perpetrator(s) and victim(s) were, where the offense took place, when it happened, what was the outcome (have the police made an arrest?), how the crime was committed, and was any motive apparent? Include all details you deem necessary.
- Next, apply the chosen theories from each perspective to your crimes. Be sure to explain how each theoretical concept is located within the offense you wanted and the relationship between the ideas and what you can detect happened in the criminal case.
- Write a proper conclusion of the implications of using your theories to understand the crimes.
For the midterm project, the writing will require you to write at least five typed pages, double-spaced, 1” margins, 12 point Times New Roman Font. The format should be in APA style and include an APA style reference page. Examples and instructions for this can be located on the Lasell Library website.