CJ 234 : The World of Violent Criminals

Transcript title

The World of Violent Criminals



Grading mode

Standard letter grades

Total contact hours


Lecture hours


Course Description

Examines serial and mass murder in the United States through scholarly, comprehensive, and empirical lenses. Intended for students interested in understanding multiple homicides, the nature of serial and mass killing, the offenders, and their victims.

Course learning outcomes

1. Summarize the emergence of serial and mass killings in the United States and the many problems involved in adequately defining the phenomenon.
2. Identify cultural, biological, psychological, and sociological frameworks as explanations for serial murder.
3. Analyze the demographic, social, and behavioral characteristics of male and female offenders, including medical, terror-motivated, cult, hate-motivated, and juvenile murderers.
4. Examine the victims and victim-offender relationships in cases of serial murder.
5. Compare and contrast serial murder around the world with serial murder in the United States.
6. Examine the role and utility of forensic science, current issues faced by law enforcement officials, and the use of national database systems as a means for catching killers.

Content outline

  1. Criminal homicide, killers and victims 
  2. Criminal theories, intimate and family murder
  3. Juvenile killers, school violence
  4. Serial killers
  5. Medical murder, rampage killers
  6. Hate homicides
  7. Terrorism
  8. Cult killings
  9. Catching killers, defenses, and punishment
  10. Epidemic thinking/over-response

Required materials

Textbook is required.

Outside of

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