The School of Criminology offer a doctor of philosophy (PhD) with research topics in criminology, criminal justice, forensics, and law. This program combines coursework and research, training students for a broad range of careers in criminology.
Applicants must satisfy the University admission requirements as stated in Graduate General Regulations 1.3 in the SFU Calendar.
This program consists of courses, a comprehensive examination, a thesis prospectus, and a thesis for a minimum of 39 units.
Students must complete
Advanced topics in criminological theory. Topics for in-depth analysis will be selected according to the availability and interest in specific course instructors. The course will emphasize theoretical construction and development, the importance of theory, and how it structure criminological thought. Prerequisite: CRIM 800, or permission of the instructor.
and two of
A survey of advanced statistical techniques in criminological research. Specific topics may include: limited (e.g., categorical, ordinal, and count) dependent variables, multi-level modeling, longitudinal data techniques, spatial data analysis, missing values analysis, and propensity score matching. Attention will be given to the decisions involved in data exploration and preparation for statistical modeling purposes using the appropriate statistical software. There is an emphasis on conceptual foundations and application. A strong background in regression-based techniques is assumed. Prerequisite: CRIM 861, or permission of the instructor.
Advanced topics, issues and techniques in qualitative research methods in criminological and socio-legal research. Subject matter will vary according to instructor interests and specialization. Specific areas of concentration may include: field research; participatory action research; qualitative research and the digital revolution; research ethics; historical methods. Prerequisite: CRIM 862, or permission of the instructor.
Topics, issues and techniques in program evaluation within criminological research. The specific subject matter will vary according to instructor interests and specialization. Specific areas of concentration may include: needs assessment, program theory, logic models, process evaluation design and implementation, outcome evaluation design and implementation, and cost-benefit analysis. Prerequisite: CRIM 860 or permission of instructor.
and an additional 12 units of graduate courses (a maximum of six units may be completed in another department or university with supervisory committee and graduate program committee approval)
and a comprehensive exam in theory and methods
A one term course that will allow students to complete the comprehensive exam process. Prerequisite: Completion of all course work within the PhD program.
and a thesis prospectus
Development and presentation of proposal for PhD thesis research. Prerequisite: CRIM 897.
and a thesis
Note: Students admitted to the program without the following prerequisite courses (or equivalent), will be required to complete these courses in addition to the PhD degree requirements:
Intensive exposure to the major streams of criminological theory, the role of theory, and how theory develops, evolves, and changes. Consideration will be given to the relationship between criminological theories, their testable hypotheses and empirical support, as well as the interplay of theory and practice. Students enrolling in this course are expected to have a solid background in undergraduate criminological theory. Equivalent to CRIM 300W.
Research design for criminological problems and foundational techniques for the conduct of research in criminology. The further development of fundamental research skills to be applied in research, including subsequent research methods courses and in the preparation of theses and dissertations. Students enrolling in this course are expected to have a solid background in undergraduate research methods, equivalent to CRIM 220.
The coverage of a range of statistical techniques, including linear regression, logistic regression, and data reduction techniques such as cluster and factor analysis. The purposes, assumptions, and conduct of such analyses using a statistical software package for social sciences (e.g. SPSS, Stata, R) will be covered. Attention will be given to the decisions involved in data exploration and preparation for statistical modeling purposes. Students enrolling in this course are expected to have a solid background in undergraduate quantitative research methods, equivalent to CRIM 320.
A range of research techniques generally subsumed under the rubric of qualitative research including field research, interview techniques, historical and legal research, and documentary analysis. Emphasis will be on the logic underlying such inquiry, the advantages and limitations associated with different sources of information and procedures, and the processes by which analytical rigor is achieved. Students enrolling in this course are expected to have a solid background in undergraduate qualitative research methods, equivalent to CRIM 321.
Students are expected to complete the program requirements in 12 to 15 terms (4 to 5 years). Normally, students are expected to complete the courses and preliminary examination within two years of program entry.
In the term after the comprehensive exam is passed, candidates develop a thesis prospectus based on original research defining the proposed investigation and demonstrating the relationship between it and existing scholarship. The thesis prospectus is presented to the supervisory committee and, on approval, is circulated to faculty and resident graduate students to be presented at a colloquium.
The progress of each candidate is assessed once per year by the school. Students who perform unsatisfactorily may not continue, subject to review procedures of unsatisfactory progress described in Graduate General Regulation 1.8.2.
Academic Requirements within the Graduate General Regulations
All graduate students must satisfy the academic requirements that are specified in the Graduate General Regulations, as well as the specific requirements for the program in which they are enrolled.