Spring 2020 - CRIM 455 D900

Advanced Issues in Policing (3)

Class Number: 7268

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo 9:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    SRYC 5360, Surrey

  • Prerequisites:

    CRIM 101, 131 and 251.



Covers the major issues surrounding policing in the 21st century. Topics will vary semester to semester and may include policing gangs; police social disorder; sustainable policing; the police in the global community; quality assurance in policing; policing multi-needs populations; and the delivery of police services in remote and rural communities. Focus on police strategies and the effectiveness of specific policies and interventions designed to address these changes.


This course will examine key facets of policing in the national and international context. Specific areas to be considered are: history of policing; recruitment and training; models of police practice, with specific reference to the issues surrounding the implementation of community policing; patrol and general duty policing, including police work in specialized environments; crime response and crime prevention strategies; the use of force (including deadly force) in police work; case investigation; and human resource issues. Police policy and practice will be examined in all of these topical areas, as well as the findings from the research literature. Invited guests will include police personnel with expertise in these areas.


  • Class Participation 40%
  • Briefing Notes 60%


For selected weeks during the semester, students will be required to prepare a 5-8 page Briefing Note on specific issues in policing.  

Note: this course involves extensive writing. There is no mid-term or final exam in this course. There is no “term” paper required.

Note: This course can be counted towards the Certificate in Police Studies, as well as towards a Major or Minor or Extended Minor. You must declare a certificate as soon as possible, so please see an advisor.


The primary objective of Criminology 455-3 is to provide a forum for exploring the various facets of decision making in the criminal justice system. The course will be run as a "discussion group" rather than in a traditional lecture format. The discussion group is designed to be highly interactive and highly demanding and requires seminar participants to be "tuned in" on a weekly basis and to assume an active role as a member of the group. As well, a key component of the course will be field trips to various police locales where we will meet with police personnel.   Prior to enrolling in the course, I would ask that you consider the following items of information:  

1. Criminology 455-3 is designed to be participatory.
This means that each member of the class will be expected to contribute to group discussions on a weekly basis. The discussion group will meet in a "learning circle" - there will be an ongoing dialogue among all group members. Class participation is 40% of the final mark and will be assessed by the quality (not quantity) of contributions made to the group discussions. Again, note that quality, not quantity, is emphasized, although it is expected that each member of the class will contribute, in some manner, each week. Throughout the semester, members of the class will be required to (1) assume and defend positions on various issues which are raised; (2) consider, respond to, and challenge points are raised by others in the group; and 3) ask insightful questions of police personnel with whom we interact.  

2. You will be required to attend a number of class sessions that will be held at various police departments around the Lower Mainland.
While the sessions themselves will take place during the scheduled class time, there will be travel time.  

If you have a class either prior to, or following, the scheduled time for CRIM 455, it is highly recommended that you not enroll in this class.

If you are a person who feels uncomfortable engaging in these types of activities, it is strongly advised that you not enroll in this course.  



1. Griffiths, C.T. 2020. Canadian Police Work. 5th ed. (If not previously read)  

2. On-line readings.

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