Curricular Unit:Code:
Sociological Perspectives of Crime780PSCR
1UndergraduateCriminology6 ects
Learning Period:Language of Instruction:Total Hours:
Spring SemesterPortuguese/English78
Learning Outcomes of the Curricular Unit:
This course aims at providing students with fundamental knowledge regarding sociological perspectives on crime and their specificity. As well as explaining several theoretical approaches, the development of an integrative, pragmatic and analytical approach to the criminal phenomenon, as well as a general investigative, critically reflective and knowledge-seeking attitude, is intended.
1. Anomie Theories:
1.1. Anomie Theory (Merton)
1.2. Status Deprivation Theory (Cohen)
1.3. Differential Opportunity Theory (Cloward & Ohlin)
2. Social Learning Theories:
2.1. Differential Association Theory (Sutherland)
2.2. Differential Identification Theory (Glaser)
2.3. Differential Reinforcement Theory (Akers)
3. Control Theories:
3.1. Containment Theory (Reckless)
3.2. Neutralization and Drift Theory (Sykes & Matza)
3.3. Social Bond Theory (Hirshi)
3.4. Self-Control Theory (Gottfredson & Hirshi)
4. Labeling Theory.
5. Environmental Theories:
5.1. Routine Activity Theory (Felson)
5.2. Rational Choice Theory (Clarke)
5.3. Crime Pattern Theory (Brantingham & Brantingham)
6. Chicago School.
Demonstration of the Syllabus Coherence with the Curricular Unit's Objectives:
This course's contents were selected based on their empirical validity, applicability and relevance to the field. The inclusion of diverse sociological approaches to crime provides students with a comprehensive perspective of the actual scope of this field. Hence, the course contents provide students with a solid, comprehensive, up to date and empirically valid basis to build their knowledge on sociological approaches to crime on, encouraging further research as well as the application of the presented theoretical models.
Teaching Methodologies (Including Evaluation):
The teaching methods are theoretical-practical classes, including (1) explanation and debate of relevant theoretical concepts; (2) demonstration of the practical application of those concepts; and (3) guidance of autonomous study by the students, consulting the recommended references.
The assessment consists of two written theoretical tests, worth 50% of the final grade each.
Demonstration of the Coherence between the Teaching Methodologies and the Learning Outcomes:
The explanation of the theoretical models is essential for the students' understanding, as is the in class debate of these models. The explanation is accompanied by examples of practical applications of the presented theoretical models, and students are requested to provide further examples. These methods stimulate the development of an integrative, pragmatic and analytical approach to the presented theoretical models, as well as a general investigative, critically reflective and knowledge-seeking attitude. From the assessment methods chosen for this course, the specific practical assignment, where students are called upon to conduct a complex case study, analyzing a case in light of the presented models, further facilitates the achievement of the proposed objectives. The oral test allows for an assessment of the extent to which the objectives were achieved.
Akers, R. L., & Sellers, C. S. (2012). Criminological theories: Introduction, evaluation and application (6th ed.). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. BFP 343.9 AKE
Gonçalves, R. A. (2008). Delinquência, crime e adaptação à prisão (3.ª ed. revista). Coimbra, Portugal: Quarteto.
Maguire, M., Morgan, R., & Reiner, R. (Eds.). (2012). The Oxford handbook of criminology (5th ed.). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Newburn, T. (2012). Criminology. New York, NY: Routledge.