CRJ 5123 Criminal Justice Policy


· Answer the following questions using material from Mears (2010).

· All answers should be typed, double-spaced, Times New Roman font with 1 inch margins. Each answer should be approximately 2.5 pages in length.

· Answers should be organized in the following manner:

· an introduction with a thesis statement that outlines the main arguments

· body paragraphs that include supporting evidence from the readings

· a conclusion that briefly summarizes the main arguments

· Answers will be graded based on content, clarity, writing, and thorough application of course materials.


1. Mears argues that the US is at a crossroads with regard to criminal justice policy. Describe this situation by discussing his notion of “irrational criminal justice policy.” Ensure that you include evidence to support this position. Describe in detail at least four of the eight influencers of policy that Mears discusses. Please provide specific examples to illustrate your understanding of these concepts.


2. Describe in detail the relationship between a needs evaluation and a theory evaluation. Your answer should first define and explain each concept in detail, including the goals and primary strategies associated with needs and theory evaluations. Then discuss how these evaluations are interdependent.


3. The most commonly discussed elements of policy evaluation are the implementation and outcome/impact components. Address the following in detail and use an example of a specific policy to demonstrate your understanding of the concepts (do not use the same policy you are using for your paper):

a. What is an implementation evaluation?

b. Describe and distinguish between outcome and impact evaluations. (Hint: this will require a discussion of research design).


4. Mears outlines several strategies to improve criminal justice policy. Describe the five most promising strategies and discuss how these strategies would assist in improving policy.