Fall 2023 - CRIM 300W D100

Current Theories and Perspectives in Criminology (3)

Class Number: 5980

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 6 – Dec 5, 2023: Fri, 12:30–2:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    CRIM 101.



A detailed examination of current theories and perspectives in criminology. The content of the course will change with developments in the area. Students can expect to study biological, psychological and sociological theories and perspectives, as well as those from other relevant disciplines and fields of inquiry (e.g. geography, political science and cultural studies). Students with credit for CRIM 300 may not take this course for further credit. Writing.


This writing-intensive course offers a comprehensive examination and critical evaluation of contemporary theories in Criminology. Students will explore recent advancements, such as control theory, psychological and biological explanations, and critical criminological perspectives, among others. The course highlights the significance of identifying criminal justice and social policy implications embedded within each criminological theory or perspective. It provides instruction on the evaluative and writing skills essential for comparing, critiquing, and presenting theories effectively. Moreover, the course delves into integrationist approaches in criminological theorizing.


  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of major criminological theories and perspectives, including classical, biological, psychological, sociological, and critical theories.
  • Analyze and critically evaluate the strengths and limitations of different criminological theories and their applicability to understanding crime and deviance.
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively communicate criminological concepts, theories, and arguments in writing, using appropriate academic language, structure, and referencing.
  • Apply criminological theories and perspectives to analyze real-world case studies and empirical research, drawing connections between theory and practice.
  • Enhance academic writing skills, including research, organization, argumentation, and citation, through regular writing assignments and feedback.
  • Cultivate a deeper appreciation for the complexity of crime and the multidimensional nature of criminological theories, promoting a nuanced understanding of crime causation and criminal justice responses.


  • Tutorial Participation 20%
  • Midterm Paper Project 5%
  • Midterm Paper 20%
  • Final Paper Project 5%
  • Final Paper 25%
  • End-of-term Test 25%



1) Snipes, J.B., Bernard, T.J., & Gerould, A.L. (2019). Vold’s Theoretical criminology. Oxford University Press, 8th edition.

Ebook access: https://www.redshelf.com/book/1470051/volds-theoretical-criminology-1470051-9780190940522-jeffrey-b-snipes-alexander-l-gerould



2) Additional electronic journal readings will also be assigned during the semester. 


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

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 Center for Accessible Learning, (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 (SWH 10156), or submitted as per Professor’s instructions for courses taking place at Surrey Campus. The assignment drop box is emptied Monday to Friday at 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. only, with the contents date stamped accordingly. No other department’s date stamp will be accepted (e.g. Library/Campus Security).  For the Surrey Campus, assignments must be hand delivered to the General Office of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, located at SUR 5180, on Monday through Friday, between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30p.m., or placed in the assignment drop box located at the southwest corner of Galleria 5.  The Surrey assignment drop box is emptied Monday through Friday at 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., with the contents date stamped accordingly.  The School of Criminology is not responsible for assignments submitted in any other manner (e.g., slid under office doors).  The University does NOT accept assignments by fax or email.
  • 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 they will receive a grade of N. 
  • 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.


Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.