Criminal Justice Research Methods: Theory and Practice, Second Edition, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Criminal Justice Research Methods

Theory and Practice, Second Edition, 2nd Edition

By Gerald J. Bayens, Cliff Roberson

CRC Press

300 pages | 44 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9781439836965
pub: 2010-12-13
Hardback: 9781138465381
pub: 2017-08-09
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pub: 2017-08-09
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The study of research methodologies can be daunting to many students due to complex terminology, mathematical formulas, and lack of practical examples. Now in its second edition, Criminal Justice Research Methods: Theory and Practice offers a straightforward, easy-to-understand text that clarifies this complex subject matter, keeping perplexing research language and associated complexities to a minimum and ensuring that students get a practical grasp of this essential topic.

The authors discuss scientific inquiry, establishing a framework for thinking about and understanding the nature of research. They examine various types of research methods in the broad categories of quantitative, qualitative, and evaluation designs and provide coverage of analytical and experimental research designs. The book also examines survey methods, survey instruments, and questionnaires, including wording, organization, and pretesting. It describes the fundamental characteristics of the qualitative approach, setting the stage for an in-depth discussion of the participant observation and case study methods of research. Other topics include ethical standards of conduct, topic selection, literature review, and guidelines for writing a research report or grand proposal. The second edition features updated examples, reworked exercises, additional discussion points, and new research-in-action sections.

Defining a clear approach to the study of research, the book enables student experiencing their initial exposure to this subject to be fundamentally prepared to be proficient researchers in criminal justice and criminology.

Table of Contents

Introduction to Research

Nature of Criminal Justice Research

What Is Research?

Research Processes

Pure Versus Applied Research

Scientific Inquiry

Assessing Goodness of Theory

Constructing Scientific Theories

Research Hypotheses

Research Design

What Is Research Design?

Types of Research Designs

Research Purposes

Choice of Research Design

Levels of Measurement

Validity and Reliability

Statistics in Research

Role of Statistics

Basic Principles and Conventions

Descriptive Statistics

Data Grouping

Inferential Statistics

Measures, Validity, and Reliability



Indexes and Scales

Validity and Reliability

Analytical and Experimental Research

Analytical Research

Experimental Research

Survey Research Methods and Sampling


Purposes of Survey Research

Types of Survey Research

In-Person Interviews

Telephone Survey

Using Computers in Survey Research

Mail Surveys

Designing Questionnaires

Comparison of Types of Survey Research


Participant Observation and Case Studies

Characteristics of Qualitative Research

Qualitative Research Strategies

Participant Observation

Features of Observation

Case Studies

Descriptive, Historical, and Archival Data Analyses

Descriptive Research

Historical Research

Archival or Document Research

Replication of Previous Research

Locating Documents

Reviewing Related Literature

Ethics in Research

Academy of Criminal Justice Science (ACJS) Code of


Neutral and Impartial Research

Research Involving Humans

Analysis and Reporting

American Association for Public Opinion Research

(AAPOR) Code of Ethics

Developing Research Plans

Topic Selection

Refining Topic and Narrowing Focus of Research

Literature Review

Writing Research Reports

When to Begin Writing

Preparatory Tips

Components of Report

Program Evaluation and Policy Research

Defining Evaluation Research

Purposes of Program Evaluation

Categories of Program Evaluation Research

Choosing a Program Evaluation

Policy Research

Policy Research Planning

Policy Research Reporting

Writing Research and Grant Proposals

Getting Started

Building a Blueprint

Overview of Proposal Process

Recommended Steps for Obtaining State And Federal


Bases for Rejection

Selection Criteria

Peer Review

Project Termination

About the Authors

Gerald J. Bayens, PhD, is a professor and chair of the Criminal Justice and Legal Studies Department at Washburn University. He also provides direct services and technical assistance to criminal justice agencies, focusing on strategic planning and policy development.

Cliff Roberson, LLM, PhD, is the editor-in-chief of the Professional Issues in Criminal Justice Journal and is academic chair for the Master of Science in Criminal Justice Program of Kaplan University. He is also an emeritus professor of criminal justice at Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Criminal Law / General
LAW / Forensic Science