Issues in Criminal Justice

Introduction to key issues in criminal justice.

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Course outline

This course is designed to introduce students to key issues in criminal justice. Using a combination of readings, lectures, discussions and dramas, students will be familiarised with the basic characteristics of the criminal justice system and asked to use this knowledge in analysing various aspects of that system.

We will begin with a discussion of how behaviour becomes criminalised and an overview of the role that discretion plays throughout the criminal justice system. As the course continues, students will learn about special populations within the criminal justice system: victims, youth, women, minorities and mentally disordered offenders. The course will also consider several areas where criminal law is relatively unsettled (i.e., sex work, risk and dangerousness, and family violence) as well as considering the outer limits of criminal justice (i.e., the case for torture).

The course employs an international, comparative approach and students will be exposed to materials from New Zealand, the US, the UK, Australia and elsewhere, and expected to relate them to each other.

Terms & Conditions

This programme gives you the opportunity to attend regular lectures in a selection of courses, alongside enrolled students as an observer. Please note that you are not eligible to attend tutorials, take part in assessments, sit for exams and will not have access to course material online.

You will be provided with a course outline to keep you up to date with the topics discussed in class every week. This is a no-stress learning opportunity.


  • 12 weeks, 23 July – 22 October 2019, Tuesdays 2-4pm
  • $355.00 incl. GST
  • The University of Auckland, City Campus
  • Presented by Dr Alice Mills

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