Spring 2020 - CRIM 416 D100

Current Issues in Criminology and Criminal Justice (3)

Groups and Crime

Class Number: 7253

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Th 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM
    SWH 10218, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 21, 2020
    12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
    AQ 5037, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    CRIM 101.



A critical analysis of certain 'hot' issues in criminology and criminal justice. The topics covered change from term to term.


An introduction to criminological research and criminal justice issues oriented around the study of groups and crime. It focuses on a specific study on how we define ‘group’ criminal behavior, the role of groups in facilitating criminal behavior, and implications of group behavior for prevention efforts by criminal justice actors.

This course is designed to introduce students to the study of group and peer processes related to criminal behavior and criminal justice intervention. The course will provide a comprehensive understanding of criminological theory related to group behavior, the way in which groups can be defined and how different forms of groups facilitate criminal behavior. Topics will include mechanisms of peer influence, causality in the study of group behavior, measuring peer or group influence, sources of peer influence, an understanding of the role of peer networks and roles within peer networks, the role of peer networks in explaining other criminological phenomena (i.e., desistance), gender composition of peer networks, situating peer networks into context, street gangs, and interventions that integrates a focus on groups. Students will submit a research proposal to exhibit comprehensive knowledge of the issues covered throughout the course and to explore a novel area in the study of groups and crime.


To learn about the role of groups in explaining criminal behavior and understand the theoretical mechanisms that underlie how deviant others facilitate crime.


  • Participation 10%
  • Classroom-led Topic Discussion 10%
  • Research Project Outline & Annotated Bibliography 15%
  • Midterm 20%
  • Final Research Paper 30%
  • Research Presentation 15%



Warr, M. (2001). Companions in Crime: The Social Aspects of Criminal Conduct. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

If you have any Criminology course enrollment requests (course adds, course swaps), please contact a Criminology advisor. Please do not contact instructors for enrollment assistance as they will ultimately refer you to a Criminology advisor.

Criminology course enrollment requests should be sent to a Criminology advisor no later than the last day of the Second week of classes. Late enrollment requests are subject to approval and are not guaranteed. 

Enrollment requests for non-Crim courses should be directed to the advisor for the program offering the course. 

ATTENTION: STUDENTS WITH A DISABILITY: Please contact the Centre for Students with Disabilities, (MBC 1250 or Phone 778-782-3112) if you need or require assistance, not your individual instructors.  

  • N.B.: Students are reminded that attendance in the first week of classes is important. However, there are no tutorials in the first week.
  • ON CAMPUS COURSES ONLY: Assignments not submitted to the Professor/T.A. during class/office hours must be placed in the security box behind the General Office (ASSC 10125), or submitted as per Professor’s instructions for courses taking place at Surrey Campus. The assignment drop-off box is emptied Monday to Friday at 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. only and the contents are date stamped accordingly. No other department’s date stamp will apply (e.g. Library/Campus Security) and the School of Criminology is not responsible for assignments submitted any other way (e.g. slid under office doors). The University does NOT accept assignments by fax. 
  • A student must complete ALL aspects of a course (including assignments, exams, class participation, presentations, chat room components of Distance Education courses and other), otherwise he/she will receive a grade of N. 
  • E-mail policy for on campus courses only: The School of Criminology STRONGLY DISCOURAGES the use of e-mail in lieu of office hour visits. Criminology advises its instructional staff that they are NOT required to respond to student e-mails and that students wishing to confer with them should do so in person during scheduled meeting times.
  • The University has formal policies regarding intellectual dishonesty and grade appeals which may be obtained from the General Office of the School of Criminology.
  • Under GP18, the University has policies and procedures which respond to our obligations under the BC Human Rights Code to provide a harassment and discrimination free environment for the students, staff and faculty of this institution.  Members of this community have an affirmative obligation to safeguard the human rights of others.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html