Not too easy. Not too difficult.
The class is very fun and interesting and you learn about why crime happens from a lens that is not normally talked about in news. Crime today really focuses on the sociological elements of the victim and the offender and we often forget about the biology that engines these acts. This course brings up these topics in a very open and unbiased manner and looks at all the differing theories behind biology in crime. It especially goes over mental illness and how that affects the brain in a mental disorder offender. It provides background and a base for sociological explanations of crime which by itself, provides a incomplete explanation of crime.
The highlights of this course was taking part in a debate online on how we should handle mental disorder offenders in the criminal justice system. Initially, I was very biased on one side thinking that they should just be institutionalized for their and our own safety. However, after taking this course, I realized that the perception of highly violent mental disorder offenders was widely overblown by the media and that only a small percentage, around 11% have violent tendencies. Moreover, most of them can be treated very effectively with medication and therapy, allowing them to successfully be reincorporated back into society. From taking this course, I learned that advocating an approach that takes into consideration the needs of the community and the mental disorder offender was a better idea than simply locking them up. This course will help shine a light on this often overlooked issue and help remove the stigma and misconceptions about this topic.
Hours per week:
Advice for students:
When taking this course, you will not have too much homework. Your main homework however is to read read read. There are many papers, lectures, and journals you have to read and skipping a day's reading can really put you behind. Being diligent and having a set routine for doing all the readings is highly beneficial in keeping you on track for this course. Also, do not be afraid to ask questions as the T.A.s for this course are highly helpful and knowledgeable of the material and can help clear any confusions you might have.