Criminal Justice Term Paper Writing Guide for Troubled Students

Writing guide
Posted on February 7, 2019

Criminal justice is one of the most popular disciplines in colleges. The enrolment rates in criminal justice keep on increasing each year. Many students enroll in criminal justice studies to find the knowledge and expertise that can help resolve societal problems such as crime. Ensuring justice is among the greatest objectives of most students who study criminal justice. The criminal justice concept is a phrase used to describe the interdependent system including the police service, courts, and the correctional facilities within a given government. Students who study criminal justice end up working either of the outlined systems.

The law-making system should be added as a fourth component of the criminal justice system. The author explains that every activity that is carried out by the three interdependent components is based on the legal structure that is in place. It is important to point out that the issue of whether the legislative arm of the government is under the criminal justice system remains debatable. Nonetheless, students who study criminal justice must successfully complete their term papers before earning their degrees. This guide on how to write a criminal justice term paper will answer all the questions such students might have.

The Importance of Criminal Justice Term Papers

Helps Develop Positive Logical Arguments

Term papers are important for criminal justice students because of several reasons. First, it is considered as an evaluation criterion that the instructor uses to determine whether the learners have mastered the taught concepts. The instructor may want to know whether the knowledge they have imparted on the students has been of any help. Another reason why your professor is likely to assign you a criminal justice term paper is that they want to test your ability to develop a logical argument. Different criminal justice cases come with diverse issues that require logical reasoning and impeccable critical thinking and decision-making skills. The term papers provide you with a chance to show your professor that you have the ability to reason out and find the best alternative that can resolve a critical situation. You must use thoughts and logic to critique a criminal justice case and determine the best way forward. You need to have skills that can allow you to successfully argue against or defend a party in the courtroom. Term papers provide you with the ability to build on logical arguments.

Positive Communication Skills

Second, a criminology term paper is helpful because it enhances your communication skills. You should not be in the criminal justice system if you do not like to communicate with people. The term papers that you write help in sharpening your communication skills. You are required to constantly update your boss or client on the development on a case you may be handling. This becomes very difficult if you lack the necessary skills and knowledge of communication. Your term paper will help your instructor to identify your communication challenges and accordingly address them. Most instructors often write comments on the submitted term papers to help guide the students on revisions. You can be sure that by the term paper help in improving your communication skills.

Exploring Own Thoughts and Ideas

Tem papers provide you with a chance to explore your thoughts and challenge your misconceived ideas on issues such as racial profiling in the police service, privacy versus individual rights among others. Criminal justice instructors often try to bring critical and debatable topics to elicit reactions of the students. Your reaction to a topic is needed not only for examination purposes but also to help create an effective intervention to a problem. Your thoughts and feelings are built during the writing process. It is important to note that you may also discover things you may not have known during the writing process.

Impeccable Writing Skills

Besides positive communication, term papers also help develop impeccable writers. You learn to be more precise and accurate in your writing. As noted, term papers often have page or word limit. You must be able to compress your ideas and thoughts in the stated pages or word counts. In practice, you must be able to present your ideas in a concise manner that allows the audience to positively relate your points to the case you could be handling. Writing term papers in criminal justice studies is an art that requires constant practice. The term papers can help you understand what to say, the most appropriate words and structuring of phrases. Concisely, it helps in improving individual writing skills and the ability to communicate in a busy business environment.

What You Need To Know Before Writing A Criminology Term Paper: Hot Picks from Our Writers

Understanding the ethical and legal issues that surround critical decisions is very important in this profession. Contrary to what most students think, criminal justice is not a “YES” or “NO’ profession. It allows a student to think and develop own perspectives on different societal issues. As a student in this line of profession, you should identify and appreciate different issues that affect the well-being of humans in the society. For instance, protecting the environment is a significant issue in criminal justice. You may need to write a term paper to defend a perspective on environmental protection. When writing such a paper, you must show your commitment to the position you have taken by providing relevant examples and evidence. You need to understand that your lecturer is testing a lot more than the concepts they taught in class.

Choosing a topic may be a big problem to a student writing a criminal justice term paper. The instructor may decide to choose a topic on behalf of the student. In case the topic is not chosen, you may need to explore the research problem and develop your own. Some of the common topics in criminal justice term papers include:

  • Environmental protection;
  • Racial profiling in criminal justice system;
  • Police brutality;
  • Equality and social justice;
  • Death penalty;
  • Public protection versus individual rights.

Pre-Writing Techniques

It is important to understand the subject matter before deciding on the artistic styles to apply in a paper. The instructor may be testing your ability o interpret the theoretical concepts that were taught. As a student, they need you to think beyond the theories they explained in the class. To record positive performances, you must indicate that you understand and appreciate the legal and ethical issues that are encountered in criminal justice. Here is the step-by-step guide that you need to follow to get the best out of a criminology term paper. First, you understand that the assessments you handle in criminal justice are meant to help you rehearse and store the information you learnt during the lectures. Second, you must recognize the fact that criminology term papers require many preparations.

You need to understand what your professor needs. The grading criteria changes from one institution to another. The most important thing is to understand what the instructor needs and respond accordingly. The grading criterion is the same in almost every criminal justice term paper. Plagiarism is one of the most important aspects that every criminal justice instructor takes very seriously. Plagiarism is stealing another person’s work and passing him or her off as your own. You will not receive any point if you steal another person’s work.

Another important area that is often considered when establishing the grading policy in most criminal justice term papers is the literature review. This part requires you to explore previous literature and effectively relate them to the topic that you are discussing. It is important to understand what the lecturer may be looking for in the literature review section before you begin writing. Literature review requires a comprehensive research. Depth and comprehensiveness are some of the components that are assessed in the literature review. You must show the examiner that you used a sufficient number of credible sources to explore the topic.

In addition, the examiner is looking for whether you used credible scholarly sources. It is important to point out that not every criminal justice term paper will require conducting a literature review. You may not be asked to complete a literature review in argumentative papers. Nonetheless, you need to understand that the scholarly articles you use to support your arguments are relevant and credible.

The analysis is another essential component of criminal justice term papers. Virtually every term paper requires students to show their analytical skills. You are required to interpret and adequately describe the major themes and findings. The instructor wants to know whether you have understood the issues that surround the topic. You can best do this by critically examining the subject matter. The instructor is also interested in the quality of criticism. You need to thoroughly examine the weaknesses and strengths of every argument that you put across. Most importantly, you need to present solutions in the analysis portion. It is imperative to present the best alternative that can be used to solve the problem you have identified.

Formatting a Criminal Justice Term Paper


The general format used in criminal justice term papers are the same. You must begin with the introduction before moving to the main body. The conclusion is the final part and it involves a concise summary of the points you have discussed in the main body. It is important to point out that some term papers may require students to go directly to the discussion without including the introduction or the conclusion. It is important to double check the instructions to understand the format. The three parts, introduction main body and conclusion, are discussed in details in (Criminal Justice Term Paper 2).


This is a very important part of a criminal justice term paper. It helps the writer to explore the overall background of the research problem, the extent to which it affects a given population and some past attempts to resolve it. The introduction orients the reader to the whole issue that is to be discussed.  It is important for the writer to grab the attention of the reader at the introduction. This can be done by stating startling facts or statistics that relate to the topic under discussion.

Example: Did you know that murder rate in the United States has been increasing by over 3% each year for the last ten years?

Main Body

The main body is the heart of your term paper. Remember you examiner want to understand whether you have understood the concepts and issues that relate to your topic. First, you must be articulate when present your arguments in the main body. The intention is to synthesize the issue and ultimately suggests a solution.  You should consider the following when writing the main body of your criminal justice term paper:

  • Begin every paragraph by writing a relevant topic sentence. The topic sentence should summarize the main argument in that particular paragraph.
  • Be logical in your arguments
  • Support your arguments using practical examples
  • Use transition words when moving from one paragraph to the other.

The main body may be structured in the following way:

  • Argument/Claim: You should begin by stating your argument in the topic sentence.
  • Analysis: Assess each piece of your argument using evidence from different scholarly works. You also need practical examples to support your claims.
  • Opposing Argument: It is important to point out some of the perspectives that argue against your position.
  • Solution: Try to present a reasonable solution that can be used to solve the problem.


As previously mentioned the conclusion part is where you summarize your arguments and restate your thesis. You need to indicate whether the hypothesis you had in the introduction has been proved or disapproved.

Post-Writing Criminal Justice Term Paper Tips

A number of considerations should be made once you have written your criminal justice term paper. It is likely that you will be tired after the writing process. You need to take about one hour away from the computer after you are done writing. This break should help your brain to refresh. The job is not done if you have not proofread your paper to ensure that you have written exactly what you needed. The following criminal justice term paper tips & prompts can help improve the quality of your term paper:

  • Take a break of at least one hour after completing the term paper.
  • You may divide proofreading for several sessions. For instance, you begin by proofreading introduction part before moving to the main body.
  • Ask a friend, family member or mentor to review your paper before you submit it. You may need a ‘third eye’ to help check your paper for any error.
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