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GIS Applications in Criminology

Crime & Justice Studies 4331 Fall 2005 MW, 11:00 a.m. -12:15 p.m.

Dr. Karen L. Hayslett-McCall Office: GR 3.210 Office Hours: M/W 12:15p.m. – 1:45 p.m. OR by appointment Office Telephone: (972) 883-4767 E-mail address: Teaching Assistant: Janis Schubert Office: GR 3.416 Office Hours: ___________________ E-mail address: • Janis will be checking and responding to all the e-mail addressed to me on WebCT. Course Description: • This is a topics course designed to introduce students to key literature in the field and to examine some issues related to the use of GIS when studying crime. We will be examining the relationship between space and crime. Course Objectives: • To provide students with a basic knowledge of Geographic Information Systems. • To improve critical thinking skills of students as they are used in the classroom and in everyday life.Geographic • To strengthen skills essential to communication: reading, writing, and oral presentation • To better understand the scientific process as it is reflected in Geographic Information Systems and Criminology. Special Note Regarding this Semester: • The rhythm of taking collegiate level course work can be very demanding. I like to remind everyone that regular effort is important on your part to keep up with the assigned reading, etc. If you expect to get information out of class, you must come to class having read the required materials for the assigned day. • In terms of class participation, there are assigned readings for each class, which will be posted on WebCT and announced in class. For each class I expect you to have read the assignments and to be ready to discuss them. Class meetings will include some lecture, but will also emphasize in-depth discussion of the topic and

readings by all members of the class. Additionally, in this class you will be learning skills that build upon one another. Attendance is simply necessary. We will not be providing additional lab sessions for skipped classes. • That means that attendance, while not taken in a formal sense, is crucial to your success in this course. I expect that to show respect to me and to your classmates, you will arrive on time to class and stay until the end. We all have a lot to learn from each other, so I expect everyone to participate fully while listening thoughtfully and responding respectfully to the diverse viewpoints of others

Attendance and Classroom Decorum: • Students are expected to be diligent in the pursuit of their studies and regular in their class attendance. Students have the responsibility of making arrangements satisfactory to the instructor regarding absences on test days and when homework is due. Such arrangement MUST be made prior to the absence if possible. THERE WILL BE NO MAKEUP QUIZZES OR EXAMS. Attendance during lab sessions, presentations, videos, and guest speakers is mandatory, the cost of missing one without a university excused absence is a zero on the points assigned for that day. Under no circumstances will I (or any of my TA’s) provide notes for students missing class. I suggest that you find 2 or 3 people in the class that you can contact about notes in case of emergency. This syllabus is TENTATIVE. The scheduled readings, videos, speakers, etc. can change at any time. Changes will be posted on WebCT and announced in class. YOU are responsible for regularly checking when assignments are due. Electronic devices. It is my expectation that ALL of your personal electronic devices will be turned completely OFF (not just switched to vibrate) during the class period. This includes, but is not limited to, cell phones, pagers, palm pilots, blackberries, tape recorders and laptops (unless you receive direct permission from me. Lab computers. It is my expectation that you will NOT surf the web, instant message, check e-mail, etc. while you are in my class. You can do all of these things outside of class time. If you are doing these things while in my class, I will simply ask you to leave and you will forfeit any points that could have been earned during that class period (i.e., attendance in a lab session, etc.). Texts: There will be 1 texts used in this class. In addition, you will be required to read news articles that are posted to the class WebCT site. • • • Spatial Aspects of Crime: Theory and Practice (2004) by Derek J. Paulsen and Matthew B. Robinson Academic articles, Chapters, and Links Posted on WebCT

Requirements: •

The readings from the text, other books, and journals are original articles or books written by the various authors. They are written for academic audiences, such as yourself. They are not all going to be easy-reads like a traditional text books. If you do not understand something in an article, be prepared to ask about it in class,

and we will all work through it together. • The readings have been converted to Adobe Acrobat files – Version 5. If you do not have the most recent version of Adobe Acrobat, they may not open on your computer. However, Adobe is available for free on the web at the following location:


Examinations: There will be two midterm exams in this course, and one cumulative make-up final. • The exams for this course will comprise of some combination of multiple choice, short answer, and short essay. NO make-up exams will be given. Failure to take an exam will result in a zero grade (unless you have been granted permission from the instructor PRIOR to the exam OR HAVE DOCUMENTED EVIDENCE OF ILLNESS, etc.). THERE WILL BE NO MAKE-UP EXAMS. Exams are scheduled well in advance so that you can plan around these dates. If you miss one of the midterm exams, you must take the final. If you miss more than one exam, you will receive a zero for the additional missed exam. • There are ABSOLUTELY NO EXCEPTIONS to this rule. If you chose not to take the first exam because it is raining, and you wreck your car on the way to the second exam, you will receive a zero for one of you mid-term exams. If you have the bubonic plague for the first exam and have a relapse for the third, you will receive a zero. I must caution that this make-up final is CUMULATIVE, and it WILL NOT BE EASY. I highly recommend making sure that your schedule is such that you can attend classes during the regular exams. Taking this exam can either RAISE or LOWER your grade.

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Once you sit for any exam, you will receive a grade for that exam. There are no exceptions. Once the first person taking the test leaves the room, students that come late are no longer eligible to sit for that exam.

Bring picture identification to each exam (including the cumulative makeup final). Failure to bring a picture ID to class will prevent you from taking an exam and you will have to take the make-up cumulative final exam. Exam questions will be taken from lecture and the text. You will find daily attendance and note-taking to be helpful in exam preparation. The fourth mid-term Exam will include an essay that can potentially reflect material that is presented throughout this course (i.e., one cumulative question asking you to tie together what you have learned in the course). Keeping track of your notes and outlining the readings is helpful for students when they prepare for an exam.

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In-Class Writing Assignments: These writings will be conducted on unannounced days, and will reflect the reading materials for that day. They will be conducted at the beginning of class. If you are late, then you will be considered to be absent. I will not allow anyone to begin working on an in-class writing assignment or quiz once the first person finished hands in their writing assignment/quiz. There will be NO make-up writing assignments and no exceptions to this rule. Lab Assignments: Lab assignments are required. Attendance is required. Points will be assigned to each lab, according to the difficulty level as determined by the instructor. WebCT Assignments and Quizzes: These quizzes will be put on WebCT to be taken outside of class. These may or may not be announced in class. I will post them via WebCT and YOU are responsible for checking regularly these will reflect the reading materials that are going to be covered in class shortly after the on-line availability of the quiz. There will be NO make-up WebCT assignments and quizzes. There will be no exceptions to this rule. In addition to quizzes, there will be WebCT assignments. The first assignment will be to check into the course. You will receive 5 points for doing so by the assigned date and time. Summaries of Readings: Summaries (as assigned) will be due at the very beginning of class. If you are late, any summaries handed in will be given a zero. You can turn in summaries via WebCT, as an attachment. Late summaries will not be graded. ONLY summaries handed in ON TIME will receive credit. Student Presentations: A short (15 minute presentation) will be required for this class. Extra Credit: I do not make extra credit assignments. In order to be fair, extra credit must be available to the entire class. Also, some form of weighting must be applied so as to not penalize those not attempting the extra credit assignment. Extra credit implies that the course is graded on a 100 point scale and presents the opportunities to earn >100 Points. The potential for misunderstandings and student perceptions of unfair treatment are very high. We will avoid this problem and simply not have extra credit assignments. Evaluation:

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Exam 1: Exam 2: Presentation Lab Assignments In Class Writing assignments WebCT assignments Summaries of readings •

100 points 100 points 100 points As assigned As assigned As assigned As assigned

For example – If I give an in-class assignment worth 10 points, then that 10 points counts toward the final number of points available in that class (i.e., it figures into the denominator). So, if I earn 8/10 points, I add the 8 points to the number of points that I have earned in the class (the numerator), and I add the 10 points to the number of points possible in the class (the denominator). GRADES WILL BE POSTED ON WebCT. I do keep permanent records, but YOU are responsible for keeping track of how you do in this class. Please write down your scores on all assignments, as well as the total number of points that are available for that assignment. Remember -- a review of grades can go both ways. Final grades will be awarded according to the following percentage scale: A+: 100 and above A: A-: 94 and above 90-93 B+: 87-89 B: 84-86 B-: 80-83 C+: 77-79 C: 74-76 C-: 70-73 D: 60-69 F: 59 and below

Grade Rounding: I do “round” grades, but only in the slightest sense. Thus, in order to achieve an A you must have achieved a 94 in the class (93.5 is an A, but a 93.49 is not). So, in case that is not clear enough, I round according to the number immediately after the decimal and NO further. Grades are EARNED: I do not GIVE grades, students earn them. It is important that you take responsibility from the very onset of all of your classes for learning the material and doing your best on each and every assignment or exam. Review of grades: I will assign your final grade according to what you have earned in the course. If you wish to contest a grade, you must follow the appropriate procedures. Here is the link giving directions about appealing grades: Academic integrity is the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception and is an educational objective of this institution. This includes, but is not limited to cheating, plagiarizing (including the failure to properly cite sources), fabrication of information or citations, facilitating acts of academic dishonest of others, having unauthorized possession of examinations, submitting work of another person or work previously used without informing the instructor, or tampering with the academic work of other students. Violations of academic integrity will be reported to the Dean of Students. ANOTHER NOTE ON PLAGIARISM: Plagiarism will not be tolerated and any instances will be immediately referred to the Dean of Students. I AM

Academic Integrity: •

Academic Dishonesty: •

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SERIOUS! Unfortunately, I have found that students are often unfamiliar with what constitutes plagiarism. The Student Life Office at UTD includes a definition on its website: “To submit to your instructor a paper or comparable assignment that is not truly the product of your own mind and skill is to commit plagiarism. To put it bluntly, plagiarism is the act of stealing the ideas and/or expression of another and representing them as your own” • Now, there are multiple ways to steal someone else’s ideas. Stephen Wilhoit in his article entitled, “Helping Students Avoid Plagiarism,” lists several forms of plagiarism (College Teaching, v 42 (Fall 1994): 161-164): • • • Buying or lifting a paper, or any portion of a paper, off the internet. Turning in a paper written by a fellow student, with or without her knowledge. Copying information directly from a source without providing documentation (i.e., without a citation explaining where you got the information). Keep in mind that changing the order of the sentence or replacing a few words does not make the sentence yours! Copying information directly from a source and providing a citation, but not putting the copied material in quotations, even if you cited the author. Putting the source’s information in your own words, but without providing a citation. Even if they are your words, the ideas were the author’s. As a general rule, any information that you gathered by reading a source (i.e., information you did not know previously) must be cited!

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Disability Services: • We have an excellent Disability Services office on campus. If you require special accommodations, please make sure you go and see them immediately if you have not already done so. The University of Texas at Dallas is committed to providing educational opportunities for all persons. If you anticipate needing accommodations for learning differences, please let me know. If you require accommodations, please make sure that you are properly registered with the Disabilities Services Office (972) 883-2070. If you have a condition that requires accommodation in this course, please speak with me after class or in office hours during the first week of class. I will be happy to make appropriate accommodations provided timely notice is received and the arrangement is consistent with any recommendations from Disability Services, when applicable.

Tentative Schedule of Readings:
Changes may be made to this schedule. I will announce changes in class and/or will post information on WebCT. YOU are responsible for all changes (e.g., reading assignments, assignment deadlines, etc.). ORIENTATION – Aug 22 INTRODUCTION TO THE LAB – Aug 24 The due dates for readings, articles, and assignments will be announced in class. Remember, you are required to come prepared for class. Cox (WebCT) Cox and Gifford (WebCT) Kent and Klosterman (WebCT) Monmonier (WebCT) Schuler and Obermeyer (WebCT) INTRODUCTION TO SPATIAL ASPECTS OF CRIME: THEORY AND PRACTICE. 1. Spatial Aspects of Crime: Theory. 2. Crime and Place. 3. Social Disorganization. 4. Ecological Theories of Crime. 5. Behavioral Geography and Criminal Behavior. 6. Epidemics, Diffusion, and Displacement of Crime. II. SPATIAL ASPECTS OF CRIME: PRACTICE. 7. Mapping in the Criminal Justice System. 8. Major Issues in the Practice of Crime Mapping.

Tentative Schedule of Labwork:
We will follow the basic outline in your workbook. However, this will be augmented with outside exercises. Information on those exercises will be provided to you on WebCT. III. SPATIAL ANALYSIS OF CRIME: CRIME MAPPING WORKBOOK. The workbook portion of your text was created for a more basic version of the GIS software that we use at UTD. There are updates that will be provided to you via WebCT.