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The research project for this course requires you to identify a criminal justice professional field in which you would be
interested in pursuing a career. If you already work in the criminal justice field, you can use your current position as the
basis for this project. The course research project will be due in Unit VI.
You will be required to not only research various aspects of the selected field, but you must also interview an individual
who currently works in the selected field. When interviewing the professional working in the selected criminal justice field, you should consider asking the following
types of questions:
Why did you decide to work in this field of criminal justice?
What are three key skills or competencies a person must possess to be successful in this field of criminal justice?
What steps should a person take to prepare him or herself for working in this field of criminal justice?
What types of substantive changes do you currently see occurring or foresee occurring within this field of criminal
What types of technology do you use on a regular basis within this field of criminal justice?
The research project paper should consist of the following sections:
Introduction: This section identifies the criminal justice field that the student has selected and includes a brief description
of why this field is of interest (recommended length: no more than one page).
Competencies: In this section, you will identify at least three competencies required for the selected criminal justice field
and explain why each is important to the field. This section should be based upon research that you have conducted
about the selected field and supported with cited resources (recommended length: one page).
Professional interview: In this section, you will summarize the interview conducted with a professional working in their
selected field of criminal justice. It is important for you to begin this section by identifying the person interviewed and his
or her current position within the selected criminal justice field (recommended length: one to two pages).
Evaluation: In this section, you will evaluate the selected field of criminal justice by discussing the following questions and
supporting the evaluation with cited resources (recommended length: one to two pages):
How did the competencies you identified for this field of criminal justice align or differ from the information obtained
during the interview with a criminal justice professional?
What learning goal would you like to set for yourself during this course, month, or year based on the skill sets and
requirements discovered during your research and based upon the interview with a criminal justice professional?
While the level of detail in each section of the research paper will vary, it is anticipated that the final paper will be
approximately five to six pages in length, not counting the cover and reference pages. Please click here to review the
General Guidelines for Papers document to obtain a description of other formatting requirements.
Part of the purpose of a reference is to lead your reader back to the sources you used. Imagine a person reads your paper
and wants to find out more information about your topic. The reader can refer to your reference list to locate the sources you
used to find information. However, certain types of sources, like a private conversation, cannot be located. No one can read
a transcript of your interview (unless you recorded it). The information the interviewee passed on to you is not recoverable
by other researchers, so it does not go in the reference list. This kind of source (interviews, private letters and e-mail,
personal conversations, phone calls, etc.) is called a personal communication. Cite it in text only, give initials as well as the
surname of the person involved, and give as precise a date as possible. Again, this type of source is ONLY cited in text.
There will be no reference citation on the reference list.
The two examples of how personal communication citations can be done are below:
1. T. Smith (personal communication, March 19, 2013) indicates that …
2. …from a police custody inspector’s prospective (T. Smith, personal communication, March 19, 2013).
Information about accessing the grading rubric for this assignment is provide
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