Introduction to Corrections: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Introduction to Corrections

1st Edition

By David H. McElreath, Linda Keena, Greg Etter, Ellis Stuart, Jr.

CRC Press

291 pages | 10 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2011-07-27
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Millions in our nation are under some type of judicial sanction, with some individuals behind bars but the majority serving their sentences while living and working among us. Introduction to Corrections examines predominant issues related to the system of administering to offenders in the United States. Written in a simple, concise style and enhanced with discussion questions and a list of key terms in each chapter, this volume begins with an overview of the system and a historical review and then focuses on select issues, including:

  • Sentencing goals and rationales, and types of sentencing
  • Noncustodial supervision, including probation, electronic monitoring, home confinement, halfway houses, and offender registration
  • Parole and postconfinement release
  • Jail, prison, and jurisdictional differences in correction systems
  • Challenges faced by corrections personnel, including overcrowding, health issues, sexual assault in institutions, and prison gangs
  • Constitutional challenges to inmate controls
  • Issues related to victims’ rights, including federal and state funds and notification programs
  • Correctional counseling perspectives and prevailing sociological theories
  • Controversies surrounding capital punishment in the United States
  • Juvenile corrections, including probation, parole, and life sentences for minors

The evolution of corrections in the United States has spanned three centuries and has moved from an origin of basic community-based confinement to an extensive system that includes federal, state, local, private, and military facilities and programs. Examining diverse topics relevant to a range of professionals in the corrections community, this book explores the functions of corrections as well as those who serve in the profession.

Table of Contents

Section I: Foundations of Corrections

An Overview of Corrections

Correctional Foundations

The Global Community


How Do We View Corrections?

What Is Corrections?

A Snapshot of Those Adults Confined and Under Judicial Sanctions

Juvenile Offenders

Professional Opportunities in Corrections

What Is the Goal of Corrections?

Corrections: A Historical View

Foundation for Institutional Corrections and the Rule of Law


Early Prison Reform and Reformers

Development of the American Prison System

The Penitentiary in America: New-Gate, Walnut Street Jail, and the Early Efforts to Develop Prisons

The Reform Era

Emergence of the National Prison Association

Early Steps in Federal Confinement

Early 1900s

The Industrial Era

Early Twentieth-Century Correctional Leaders and the Concept of Prisonization

Riots, Litigation, and Reform

A New Era in Corrections


Sentencing Goals and Rationales

Types of Sentences

Sentencing Models

Sentencing Disparity

Section II: Community Corrections

History and Process of Probation and Noncustodial Supervision

Overview of Noncustodial Supervision


History of Probation

Foundations of Federal Probation and Pretrial Services

The Probation Process

Offender Assessment

Electronic Monitoring

Intensive Supervision Probation (ISP)

Community Corrections

Day and Evening Reporting Centers

Home Confinement Programs

Residential Reentry Centers or Halfway Houses

Offender Registration

Correctional Treatment

Termination of Probation and Noncustodial Supervision

History and Process of Parole and Postconfinement Release

Postconfinement Release Options

Foundations of the Concept of Parole

Overview of Parole in the United States

History of Parole in the United States

Parole Differs From Probation

Parole Boards and Parole Selection

Other Factors Influencing the Awarding of Parole

Process of Parole and Postconfinement Supervision

Termination of Parole or Postconfinement Release

Section III: Institutional Corrections


The Gaol

The Advent of the Jail

Coming to Jail

The Garage Sally Port


Inmate Classification

How Inmate Classification Works

Inmate Housing

Inmate Supervision

Work Release Programs

Inmate Healthcare

Inmate Programs

Managing a Jail

Jail Overcrowding

The Jail as a Place of Execution

Correctional Systems and Institutions

Types of Correctional Systems and Institutions

Local Corrections

State Corrections

Federal Corrections

Private Corrections

Military Corrections

Juvenile Corrections

Prison Life

Staff: Managing the Prisoners

Correctional Officers

The Role of the Corrections Officer

Correctional Officer Assignments


Correctional Officer Power

Training of Correctional Personnel

Administering Inmate Rehabilitation Programs

Inmate World: Living Behind Bars

The Inmate Subculture

Social Structure

How Does It Form? Prison Social Structure and the Inmate Code

Male Prison Sexuality

Inmate Suicide and Prison

Mentally Ill Inmates

Aging Offenders

A Society of Violent Males

The Radicalization of Male Prison Inmates

Female Inmates

Critical Needs in Dealing With Female Inmates

Female Prison Sexuality

Female Inmate Suicide and Self-Mutilation

Section IV: Issues in Corrections

Current Issues and Problems Facing Corrections


Personnel Recruitment, Training, and Accreditation

Overcrowding of Institutions

Health, Medical, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Treatment

Health Issues: HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Hepatitis

Drug and Alcohol Treatment

Sexual Offender Treatment Programs

Aging Offender Population

Violence and Sexual Assault in Institutions

Prison Gangs

Women in Prison


Inmate Litigation

Breaking the Cycle of Recidivism

Inmate Rights and Correctional Law

History of Correctional Law

Inmate Access to the Courts (First Amendment)

Inmate Mail and Other Communications (First Amendment)

Religion (First Amendment)

Visitation and Association Rights of Inmates (First Amendment)

Search, Seizure, and Inmate Privacy (Fourth Amendment)

Inmate Discipline and Due Process (5th and 14th Amendments)

Other Due Process Issues: Classification, Transfers,

Personal Injuries, and Property Loss (5th and 14th Amendments)

Conditions of Imprisonment: Cruel and Unusual Punishment (Eighth Amendment)

Health Care (Eighth Amendment)

Female Inmates and Other Special Inmate Populations (14th Amendment)

Inmate Labor

Victims’ Rights

History of the Crime Victims’ Movement in the United States

Types of Victims

Costs That Crime Victims Suffer

The Role Correctional Agencies Play in Meeting Victims’ Needs

Correctional Counseling

Defining Correctional Treatment

Institutional Versus Community-Based Correctional Treatment Specialists

Custodial Staff Versus Correctional Treatment Staff

Theoretical Counseling Perspectives

Group Versus Individual Counseling

Capital Punishment

Methods of Execution Used in the United States

History of the Death Penalty in the United States

Further Evolution of the Death Penalty in the United States

Old Sparky: Texas Prison Museum

The Move to Eliminate Capital Punishment

Death Penalty in the United States after Gilmore

Execution and Gender

Capital Punishment: Jurisdictional View

Issues in Capital Punishment

Juvenile Corrections

Juvenile Crime

Who Is the Juvenile Offender?

The Juvenile System

Balanced and Restorative Justice and the Juvenile Offender

Juvenile Corrections: A Historical Glance

Juvenile Institutions, Detention, and Residential Confinement

Sheltered Care Facilities and Community Residential Facilities

Case Management and Supervision

Juvenile Justice Issues

Juvenile Probation, Parole, and Aftercare

Life Without Parole for Juveniles

Interstate Compact on Juveniles


About the Authors

David H. McElreath, PhD, has served as professor and chair, Department of Legal Studies, the University of Mississippi; professor and chair, Department of Criminal Justice, Washburn University; associate professor, Southeast Missouri State University; assistant professor, the University of Southern Mississippi; instructor, Itawamba (Mississippi) Community College; colonel, U.S. Marine Corps; and he has held law enforcement and corrections positions with the Oxford (Mississippi) Police and Forrest County (Mississippi) Sheriff’s Departments. His education and training include a PhD in adult education and criminal justice, University of Southern Mississippi; an MSS, U.S. Army War College; MCJ, the University of Mississippi; BPA, the University of Mississippi; and he is a graduate of the U.S. Army War College. He is also the author or coauthor of numerous textbooks and publications on the criminal justice and homeland security systems.

Linda Keena, PhD, obtained her BCJ (1984) and MS (1991) degrees in criminal justice from Southeast Missouri State University, and her PhD (2006) from the University of Missouri. She is a former State of Missouri adult probation and parole officer and has taught in the Department of Criminal Justice and Sociology at Southeast Missouri State University, and most recently in the legal studies department at the University of Mississippi. She has established a record of scholarly publications that reflects a variety of criminal justice, restorative justice, religion, corrections, and community-based research topics. In addition, she is coauthor and project director for MEDFELS, a nationally recognized methamphetamine program for elementary schools. Dr. Keena is codirector of the Violence Prevention Office at the University of Mississippi, a program funded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice, aimed at educating students and staff about the realities of sexual assault, relationship violence, and stalking.

Greg Etter, EdD, is an assistant professor of criminal justice at the University of Central Missouri. He retired as a lieutenant with the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office in Wichita, Kansas, after 29 years of service. He is rated as a gang expert by the National Gang Crime Research Center in Chicago, Illinois. Dr. Etter’s educational background includes BS and MS degrees from Wichita State University, and he earned his doctorate from Oklahoma State University. He is a member of the National Sheriff’s Association, American Jail Association, American Correction’s Association, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, and the American Society of Criminology. He is the author of a textbook on hate crimes and numerous journal articles. Dr. Etter has presented papers and conducted law enforcement and corrections training all over the United States and Canada.

Ellis Stuart Jr. has served as director of public safety for the City of Hazlehurst, Mississippi; contract agent for the Mississippi Metro Narcotics Task Force, chief of police for the City of Greenwood Mississippi, director of public safety for the Mississippi University for Women, hearing officer for the Mississippi Parole Board, probation and parole officer for the Mississippi Department of Corrections, youth court counselor for the Mississippi Department of Youth Services, and juvenile planner for the Law Enforcement Administration Division, Mississippi Office of the Governor. Mr. Stuart’s education and training include a master’s degree in criminal Justice from Mississippi Valley State University, a bachelor’s degree in social and rehabilitation services from the University of Southern Mississippi, and he is a graduate of the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers Academy, Mississippi State Fire Academy, and FBI National Academy. Mr. Stuart is currently serving as the Copiah County (Mississippi) coroner.

Subject Categories

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