Choose a thesis!!
Here is an example of a topic/problem statement:
An increase in police presence in a given area in the United States will greatly reduce the occurrence of crime, but it will not prove as an effective means in the fight against crime in the long term.
Note that the focus is on a limited aspect – not just police presence, but police presence within a given area regarding the occurrence of crime. The problem is the issue of needing to fight/reduce crime, the proposed solution is increased police presence.
Let’s suppose your interest lies in the topic of violent crime – – that is too broad, so narrow to victims of violent crime. However, that is still quite broad, so narrow it further to state-funded programs for victims of violent crime.
A word of caution is necessary, be sure not to narrow it too much. The above-narrowed topic would become too limited if you went with state-funded programs for victims of the violent crime of rape as there may not be enough literature available. Often, too narrow of a topic also leads to complications in finding information that is divided into extremely specific categories.
Please also note, instructor approval of your topic/problem statement is required prior to proceeding with full-scale research and writing. If you are uncertain as to what is expected of you in completing the assignment or project, re-read your assignment sheet carefully and ASK your instructor for clarification. Also, note that there are recommended readings at the end of each weekly lesson.
In summary, select a subject you can manage – do a cursory review of the databases (see discussion below as how to effectively do this). Avoid subjects that are too technical, learned, or specialized. Avoid topics that have only a very narrow range of source materials.
Prior to attempting this week’s discussion read the week one’s lesson located in the weekly content section of the classroom for this week. Students are to select a topic that will allow them to examine a specific issue in the field of Criminal Justice. For this week’s discussion students are to post and discuss two to three ideas of current issues and trends in Criminal Justice they feel may be an interesting topic to tackle for this course. Students are to also construct an argumentative thesis statement on the issues selected and discuss them.