RESEARCH PAPER

CCJ 360 Juvenile Justice Systems Fall 2022

RESEARCH PAPER

 

A carefully sourced, well written research paper is required. The topic of interest you select must be within the scope of the subject matter of this course – juvenile justice. This paper shall demonstrate scholarship, use of knowledge acquired in this and other relevant courses, and reflect the student’s insights and original thinking.

 

The paper will require substantial effort on your part and much of your semester must be devoted to completing a thorough empirical research literature review on your chosen topic. Your research paper will require you to gather data and information guided by your problem statement and principal research questions you hope to answer. Your final research paper will reflect the results of your formal review of the effectiveness of one or more functions, programs, and operational settings in the juvenile justice system. This review will be highly focused on outcomes as reported in the empirical research literature on your selected topic, documenting findings and conclusions from formal evaluation studies that have been successfully conducted. Put another way, it is anticipated that much of the research information you identify and review will be drawn from government reports, peer-reviewed academic journal articles, and reputable reference works that report on the results from evaluations of juvenile justice policies, programs, agencies and operations. You will be expected to formulate conclusions based on your review of the empirical research evidence, and, where appropriate, offer recommendations for future action and/or research based on the strength of the evaluation research evidence.

 

Based on conclusions reached and recommendations offered, you will provide a proposal with a plan to address problems and issues identified from your review. Proposals should link proposed goals and objectives to specific program activities you prescribe and the steps you would take or require be carried out to achieve them. Your proposal should also identify how you would measure outcomes and impact to determine whether your proposal could make a difference if it were to be implemented.

 

Much will depend on the results of your review of research studies especially evaluative research studies published in independent, professional, refereed journals in the behavioral sciences, book chapters, formal published governmental studies (NIJ, NSF, NIMH, BJS, etc.) and other reputable scientific sources. As you consider various sources, you should keep in mind that you can and should seek to apply the most current empirical research evidence (2015 through 2022) and focus on those studies which report on the effectiveness of juvenile justice policy, programs, practices and operating settings. Most highly prized will be those research papers which examine the impact of JJS policies, programs, practices and operating settings on juvenile delinquency, crime and criminal victimization.

 

Due Dates

 

A brief statement of the proposed research paper topic you wish to study should be written in the form of a researchable question. A draft statement of your research paper topic must be submitted in typed form for review no later than September 13, 2022 . Following review of research paper topics submitted, we will discuss selected topics in class and then you will be given the opportunity to amend, clarify or refine your research paper topic which must be submitted as a formal statement by September 27, 2022

 

detailed topic outline is to be prepared identifying the major elements you will be covering in your research paper and must be submitted in typed form for approval no later than October 18, 2022.

 

The draft of your research paper is due by no later than 5:00 pm on Friday, November 18, 2022. To receive instructor comments and feedback on a draft of your research paper you must deliver the draft in digital form before the above deadline

 

Research Papers must be submitted in final form by 5:00 PM Friday, December 2, 2022. Points will be deducted for papers submitted after this date (10 points will be deducted for each day your research paper is submitted late) which will result in a reduction in your grade. Papers will not be accepted after 11:59 PM, December 7, 2022.

 

Preparation and Format

 

Research paper topic proposalsresearch paper topic outlineand drafts and final versions of your research paper must be typed, with your name, course name and number, instructor’s name and title and the date and time submitted via canvas course site.

 

All papers must be written and follow APA format. All submissions must be in hard-copy, printed form AND in digital, electronic form (MS WORD 2016.) Final research papers must be at least 25 (but should not exceed 35) pages in length, not counting the title cover page, abstract, and research bibliography. Research papers must be double-spaced, with footnotes placed at the bottom of each page in citing sources, such as when making direct quotations from an empirical source. All research papers must have a research abstract on a separate page, followed by the title cover page, and an extensive research bibliography on a separate page or pages included at the end of the research paper .

 

Organization of Paper

 

Each paper must be organized in sections with major side captions identifying each of the following elements:

 

· Introduction and Statement of the Problem: Clear and concise statement of a specific JJS problem; including its scope, nature, seriousness, and persons impacted by the problem.

 

· Results in Brief: Summarize principal research findings drawn from your review of prior empirical research. This is where you present your key findings, organized in relation to each major research question or issue.

 

· Conclusions and Recommendations: State conclusions that may be reached based on logical interpretation of these research findings, conclusions that may be supported by the research findings and recommendations that may be warranted for action and/or further research.

 

 

· Proposal: Proposals are expected to address problems and issues identified from your review and based on valid interpretation of evaluation research findings that lead to conclusions on what and which evidence-based strategies work or have promise/potential for successfully addressing the problem;

 

· Program Design in the form of a logic model which links proposed goals and objectives you hope to achieve to specific evidence-based program activities you prescribe

 

· Program Plan that identifies steps you would take or require be carried out to achieve them as detailed “blueprints” as a “how-to” guide on how to implement your proposal

 

· Evaluation Component with Design that provides for monitoring program implementation and for a formal evaluation of your proposed program. The evaluation component should include an evaluation design, identifying research methods to be employed and data that will be needed to assess outcomes to determine the effectiveness and impact of your proposal were it to be adopted and implemented.

 

Do’s and Don’ts

 

In organizing the body of your paper , use major side captions and sub-captions to break up the sections or elements in the body of your paper. For example, DO use the following major captions in the body of your paper.

 

· INTRODUCTION AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

· RESULTS IN BRIEF

· CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

· PROPOSAL

· PROGRAM DESIGN

· PROGRAM PLAN

· EVALUATION COMPONENT WITH DESIGN

 

DO use sub-captions within each of these sections to organize and distinguish material that applies to different questions or issues under a major caption. Use of sub-captions also helps prevent run-on sentences and overly long paragraphs that might otherwise cause your reader to get lost or overwhelmed by detail. DO use tables, graphs, charts, illustrations, diagrams, photographs and other visual references that directly help in communicating your information. DO NOT use these as “filler” as “boilerplate” material to stretch the page length of your paper. DO use spell check and review grammar, sentence construction, and check for proper punctuation! It would be a smart idea to have a classmate or trusted friend read your paper or read it to you so that you may spot possible errors. If you intend to request help from the Reference Librarians and folks in the Writing Center, be sure to begin the effort early in the semester and be considerate of the significant demands that are being made on the time and good nature of those who are trying to help you.

 

DO NOT PROCRASTINATE! If you have not begun work on your paper by Fall Break you are at serious risk of difficulty completing your assignments.

RESEARCH PAPER FORMAT

 

Research papers must include the following eleven elements.

 

1. TITLE PAGE must include title of paper, name of course and course number, name of professor, date of submission, name of student author.

 

2. ABSTRACT provides a concise statement (up to 120 words) that identifies the topic, key word concepts expressed as questions or issues addressed, the central (or most important/significant) research findings, overall conclusion and key recommendation[footnoteRef:1] For this paper you would include a few words about your action strategy, program design and plan and provisions for evaluating program outcomes. The abstract is usually the last thing that you write. [1: Publication Manual, The American Psychological Association, Seventh Edition (2020)]

 

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3. TABLE OF CONTENTS provides page references for each section of the paper making it easier for the reader to find or refer to specific sections. It also helps you stay in conformity with the paper format and keeping track of your cited sources.

 

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4. INTRODUCTION AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM informs the reader with the subject and scope by providing clear and concise statement of the problem with specific questions and issues you will be addressing in the body of your paper. Tell the reader what specific research questions your paper is trying to answer. Tell the reader what specific issues your paper hopes to cover. Tell the reader what issues you will focus most of your attention upon and what important issues your paper will exclude and why? In this section you should include descriptive data and information that describes and defines the nature, scope and extent of the problem or issue your topic addresses. It also is the place where you introduce and summarize theories and principal assumptions you drew upon in your efforts to answer these questions and explain the issues you considered

 

5. RESULTS IN BRIEF provides a formal presentation of the principal research findings drawn from your review of prior empirical research . This is where you present key findings, organized in relation to each major question or issue, basing your arguments on logical interpretation of these research findings ( not your personal opinion!) Put another way, for each major question and issue, present a summary of the empirical evidence drawn from past research followed by your analysis and interpretation of the relevance and significance of the empirical research evidence for each specific research question or issue involved. If there are research questions or issues that you believe were not satisfactorily addressed by the empirical research literature, you may identify specific researchable questions that you believe warrant further study concerning this topic.

 

6. CONCLUSION(S) AND RECOMMENDATION(S) that can be made based upon the empirical evidence and your analysis. Recommendations offered, should include concrete actions intended to improve the effectiveness of the juvenile justice system’s effectiveness, especially those which address juvenile delinquency, crime and criminal victimization. Be sure to refer to the support, cited earlier in your paper, which forms the empirical basis for your arguments and informs your proposal concerning some policy, program, practice or JJS operating setting and/or any recommendations you have regarding future research on this topic. The conclusions and recommendations from your review become the basis for the next section of your paper — the Proposal

 

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7. PROPOSAL identifies and articulates a specific strategy or strategies based on valid interpretation of research findings that lead to conclusions on what works or has promise/ potential for successfully addressing the problem if adopted as evidence-based practice. Proposals are expected to address problems and issues identified from your review and based on valid interpretation of evaluation research findings that lead to conclusions on what and which evidence-based JJS strategies work or have promise/potential for successfully addressing the problem.

 

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8. PROGRAM DESIGN – construct a program design in the form of a logic model which links proposed goals and objectives you hope to achieve to specific evidence-based program activities you prescribe In this section you draw on the results of your review and lay out a design for adoption of some a policy, program, practice or modification to a JJS operating setting. The program design identifies key elements (i.e., goals and objectives, inputs, processes, outputs, outcomes and intended impacts) that are part of the proposal you are recommending be undertaken. This will require you to think about specific problem(s) your recommended JJS program strategy is trying to address and solve. To do so you will need to give appropriate consideration and treatment to theory, research, and public policy opportunities and constraints that are relevant to achieving success if your proposal were to be adopted and implemented.

 

9. PROGRAM PLAN – The program plan identifies steps you would take or require be carried out to achieve them as detailed “blueprints” as a “how-to” guide on how to implement your proposal. In this section of your paper you will identify the steps that will need to be completed in linking together the elements of your program design to successfully implement the JJS program strategy you are recommending. This will require you to think about what specific tasks and activities will need to be carried out in order to make your program design a practical reality. One way to distinguish between program design and program plan is to think of the program design as setting the basic requirements and the program plan as a set blueprints that you will follow to construct the program according to design specifications using the program design elements as your basic building blocks.

 

 

10. EVALUATION COMPONENT WITH DESIGN – The evaluation component has two major parts – (a) monitoring program implementation and (b) a formal evaluation of your proposed JJS program strategy. In this section of your paper you will identify how and what will be monitored during implementation of your proposal, who will do the monitoring, how often, who will receive monitoring reports and what should be done as a result of what is found. The second part of your evaluation component – formal evaluation — should include an evaluation design, identify research methods to be employed and data that will be needed on measures, especially those that will be used to assess outcomes and determine the effectiveness and impact of your proposal were it to be adopted and implemented. One way to approach this is to consider how you will measure each of the objectives in the program design and how you would determine whether your JJS program strategy could make a difference in the problem (e.g., compare crime, delinquency and victimization rates before and after, or to some other setting, etc.) .

 

11. BIBLIOGRAPHY AND/OR REFERENCES – The paper will require reviewing current relevant empirical research literature and directly citing at least five (5) separate, independent, professional, refereed journal articles, book chapters, formal studies and other reputable sources from which empirical research findings were drawn in addressing and organizing your paper. Empirical research studies, data and information may be retrieved from reputable web sources but must be fully and accurately sourced. Newspaper articles, Wikipedia and similar sources are NOT acceptable references as one of the five (5) required cited sources. You will need to go to and use the library. So, go early and often!

Richard B. Groskin, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor Page 6 of 6

of Criminology and Criminal Justice Sciences

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