Ethics in Criminal Justice Assignment

Ethics in Criminal Justice
                                    Ethics in Criminal Justice

Ethics in Criminal Justice

The following Ethics in Criminal Justice assignment is utilized to meet the Student Learning Outcomes (SLO) of CRIJ 1301-Introduction to Criminal Justice as well as the Program Student Learning Outcomes (PSLO) of the Associate of Arts-Criminal Justice program of study:

Learning Outcomes for CRIJ 1301

  • Describe the history and philosophy of the American criminal justice system.
  • Explain the nature and extent of crime in America.
  • Analyze the impact and consequences of crime.
  • Evaluate the development, concepts, and functions of law in the criminal justice system.
  • Describe the structure of contemporary federal, state, and local justice agencies and processes.
    Program Student Learning Outcomes
  • Discuss constitutional freedoms and rights of citizens and explain how an ethical criminal justice system and participatory citizenship protects those freedoms and rights.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the three major areas of America’s criminal justice system (Police, Courts, and Corrections).
  • Analyze a criminal case and understand its relevance to protected freedoms and rights
  • Demonstrate knowledge of fundamental elements of criminal law.


In this assignment, students will complete a 5-page research paper regarding ethics in the Criminal Justice System. The focus of your research paper will be on the effects of corruption within America’s law enforcement agencies, the courts, and corrections. While corruption comes in all forms, your paper should identify its affects upon individuals entering the system as well as society that depends upon the criminal justice system to be fair and arbitrary.


A successful paper will include the following criteria as it relates to the topic:

  • The paper should possess a clear introduction to the topic as well as a strong thesis statement. Example: The lack of ethics leads to corruption in the criminal justice system; thereby undermining the goal of achieving justice, the rule of law, and credibility of the system in the eyes of society.
  • The paper should define ethics in law enforcement and how the principle has been applied in the historical development of criminal justice in the United States. It should demonstrate how ethics is beneficial in the mission of the criminal justice system, particularly in the protection of the rights of American citizens.
  • The paper should identify the ethical issues existing in law enforcement, the courts, and corrections. Effective research will show how corruption and a lack of ethics can affect the mission (functions, philosophy, values) of all three major areas.
  • The paper should identify the negative effects of corruption upon criminal activity as well as the impact upon the mission to deter crime and garner public trust.
  • The paper should describe the movement of corruption on local, state, and federal levels and its impact on the system.
  • The paper should conclude with solutions to addressing corruption in the criminal justice system, the overall result if the issue of corruption is not addressed, and the social costs if the problem is ignored.

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