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Introducing Criminological Thinking
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Introducing Criminological Thinking
Maps, Theories, and Understanding



December 2014 | 392 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Visual techniques for applying criminological theory to social science research

 

Introducing Criminological Thinking: Maps, Theories, and Understanding is an accessible and user-friendly criminological theory text for students, instructors and researchers. In addition to the unique use of concept maps, mind maps, and other visual techniques to consider theory-based inquiry, this text combines an exploration of the core elements of theory with relevant examples drawn from biology, psychology, sociology, critical traditions, and integrative efforts. Unlike in other theory texts, the chapters are arranged by level of explanation to help students understand how theories from different disciplines interact with each other as a foundation for many contemporary criminological theories.

Authors Jon Heidt and Johannes Wheeldon have developed a seven-step model to identify key aspects of different theories including their historical and social context, base assumptions, scope, problem foci, terms/concepts, related research, and practical ramifications. This text offers both a student-friendly theoretical discussion and accessible visual examples to explain criminological theory and its applicability to social science research.

 
PART I: Introduction to Criminological Thinking
 
CHAPTER 1: Basic Principles of Theorizing and Mapping
What is Criminological Thinking? What is Criminological Theory?  
Visual Techniques and Criminological Theory  
Seven Steps to Understanding Criminological Thinking  
Major Orientations and Organization of the Book  
 
CHAPTER 2: The Seven-Step Model and Early Explanations of Criminality
The Seven Steps to Understanding Criminological Thinking  
A Research Example: Classical Criminology and Deterrence Theory  
 
PART II: Individual Difference Theories
 
CHAPTER 3: Biological Positivist Theories
The Biological Positivist Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Practical Ramifications of Biological Positivism: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly?  
Criticisms of Biological Positivist Theories  
Research Example: Rethinking Biology and the Brain  
 
CHAPTER 4: Psychological Positivist Theories
The Psychological Positivist Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Psychological Positivism  
Research Example: Mental Illness and Crime  
 
PART III: Process Theories
 
CHAPTER 5: Psychological Process Theories
The Psychological Process Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Psychological Process Theories  
Research Examples: The Stanford Prison Experiment, Milgram in Liberia, and Police Legitimacy  
 
CHAPTER 6: Differential Association and Social Learning Theories
The Differential Association and Social Learning Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Social Learning Theory  
Research Example: Meta-Analysis and Social Learning Theory  
 
CHAPTER 7: Control Theories
The Control Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Control Theories: The Complexity of Causation  
Research Example: Social Bonding Theory through Life Histories  
 
CHAPTER 8: Labeling Theories
The Labeling Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Labeling Theories  
Research Example: Saints, Roughnecks, Labels, and Arrests  
 
PART IV: Structural Theories
 
CHAPTER 9: Social Disorganization Theories
The Social Disorganization Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Social Disorganization Theories  
Research Example: Disorganization, Community, and Mixed Methods  
 
CHAPTER 10: Social Strain and Anomie Theories
The Social Strain and Anomie Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Social Strain and Anomie Theories  
Research Example: Measuring Social Strain  
 
PART V: Theories of Crime and Criminal Justice
 
CHAPTER 11: Conflict Theories
The Conflict Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Conflict Theories  
Research Example: Restorative Justice as a Practical Critique of the Criminal Justice System  
 
CHAPTER 12: Rational Choice Theories
The Rational Choice Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Rational Choice Theories  
Research Example: Hot Spots, Displacement, and Crime  
 
PART VI: Integration in Criminology
 
CHAPTER 13: Integrated and General Theories
The Integrative Impulse in Criminology  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Integrated and General Theories  
Research Example: General Strain and Social Support  
 
CHAPTER 14: Biosocial Theories
The Biosocial Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Biosocial Theories  
Research Example: The Lead-Crime Connection  
 
CHAPTER 15: Developmental and Life Course Theories
The Developmental and Life Course Tradition  
Seven Steps of Criminological Thinking  
Criticisms of Developmental and Life Course Theories  
Research Example: Crime and the Life Course  
 
CHAPTER 16: Conclusion
New Directions in Criminological Theory  
Toward an Analysis of Criminological Theories  

Supplements

Instructor Resource Site

The password-protected Instructor Resource Site includes the following:

  • A Microsoft® Word® test bank is available containing multiple choice, true/false, short answer, and essay questions for each chapter. The test bank provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.
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  • Editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course. Highlight essential content, features, and artwork from the book.

  • An Instructor Manual includes Additional Readings, Class Activities, among other pedagogical tools.

This is a very good book to recommend to students. The maps in particular are a very useful way to engage students who may be struggling with the topic, very helpful assistance when teaching theory

Mrs Caroline Knight
Children,Health, Adventure & Public Services, South Devon College
July 27, 2017

A very good and clear book to get in touch with most important lines of research in Criminology. I strongly recommend this book to my students.

Professor Pedro Sousa
Faculty of Law, University of Porto
March 16, 2016

I have found that the seven step guides used by the authors facilitates the foundation degree learner understanding of often complex topics. I have found them easy to read and a valued resource to new learners of criminology. I will be adding this as one of the recommended texts and request

Mr Mark Jagus
Interdiscipline , Derby College
October 21, 2015

While this was an interesting and useful text, it is not appropriate for this current course

Dr Stephanie Kewley
School of Social Sciences , Birmingham City University
May 29, 2015

Well-structured book.

Professor Dirk Drechsler
MI/UNITS, Hochschule Offenburg
April 7, 2015

A very clear, accessible and helpful text. I particularly applaud the structured development of the 'seven step model'. Highly recommended.

Ms Therese Lewis
Faculty of Health , Social Work & Education, Northumbria University
March 17, 2015
Key features

KEY FEATURES:

  • Numerous diagrams, concept maps, and other visual aids are integrated throughout each chapter as a tool for learning about, understanding, and formulating theories
  • Real-life examples derived from criminal justice system developments, news stories, and media examples related to crime show readers the relevance of criminological theory in everyday life
  •  A ‘Seven-Step Approach to Guide Criminological Thinking’ identifies key aspects of different theories to help readers understand how theories from different disciplines interact with each other encourage readers to think critically about ideas and criminal justice system practices
  • Testing of theories is introduced in the first chapter and re-employed for each major theory discussed, all of which are still being used, tested, and reformulated in some capacity by modern criminologists
  • Unique theories and concepts not often addressed in other theory books, such as psychopathy, deindividuation theory, and environmental criminology, give readers a well-rounded understanding of new cutting edge theories
  • The final chapter considers emergent theoretical developments and explores the tensions and theoretical limitations of research approaches based on evidence-based practices.
  • Instructor’s Resources containing various individual and group exercises will help to reinforce the readers’ understanding of the perspectives and theories in criminology

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 2

Chapter 3


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