Syllabus for SOC-242



Juvenile Delinquency provides an analysis of the environmental and internal factors that influence or determine delinquent behavior. Various biosocial, psychological, and sociological theories are presented to help explain the actions of individual juvenile offenders. The prevention and treatment of delinquent behavior is examined by focusing on the roles of parents/guardians, school, church, police, business community, community agencies, and the juvenile justice and correctional system.


After completing this course, you should be able to:

  1. Recognize and define the major concepts involved in the study of delinquency.
  2. Explain and critique major theories of delinquency and delinquent behavior.
  3. Evaluate various delinquency theories in light of existing research and their own experience.
  4. Discuss various types of delinquent conduct and societal responses to illegal conduct.
  5. Identify the major components of the juvenile justice system.


You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the University's textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbook

ISBN-13: 978-1305577411

Required Research

Throughout the course and for the final project, contemporary articles are required to assist in transitioning the theory and concepts. Some of these resources can only be accessed through the New Jersey State Library, which you can find through the myEdison portal under the Educational tab in the My Resources block.

You will need a library card to access the NJ State Library, which is free for TESU students. Be sure to apply early in the semester, as it may take several weeks to receive your card. 


Juvenile Delinquency is a three-credit online course. It consists of four study modules as well as an introductory and a concluding module. Modular study assignments include text readings and suggested Web sites. Module titles are listed below.


For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in four graded online discussion forums as well as an ungraded "Introductions" forum, which occurs during the first week of the semester, write three written assignments, take five quizzes, and complete a final project, including both a position paper outline and a position paper. See below for more details.

For most assignments, you are required to support your position with at least one peer-reviewed journal article published within the last three to five years. Use this helpful list of peer-reviewed journals that are available to you through either the myEdison portal or New Jersey State Library as you conduct your research.

Remember, for every reference you include, you must have at least one citation in the body of your paper. Avoid plagiarism by researching your topic, engaging in critical thinking, and paraphrasing and citing all sources.

Consult the Course Calendar for due dates.

Promoting Originality

One or more of your course activities may utilize a tool designed to promote original work and evaluate your submissions for plagiarism. More information about this tool is available in this document.

Discussion Forums

In addition to an ungraded "Introductions" forum, Juvenile Delinquency requires you to participate in four graded class discussions.

Communication with the mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a posted question (discussion thread) and subsequent comments on classmates' responses.

You will be evaluated both on the quality of your responses (i.e., your understanding of readings, and concepts as demonstrated by well-articulated, critical thinking) and quantity of your participation (i.e., the number of times you participate meaningfully in the assigned forums). Responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, professional, and respectful.

Meaningful participation in online discussions is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate, the reading, or your mentor, state and support your agreement or disagreement.

Read the following helpful article to help you write a brilliant discussion forum post.

Russino, H. (2015). 6 essential ways to write a brilliant online discussion board post. Retrieved from

Due dates for posting responses to the discussion forums are given in the  Course Calendar.

Written Assignments

You will write three written assignments for this course. They will be prepared in a manner acceptable for college-level work; i.e., title page (do not use a Word Cover Page), Times New Roman, font size 12, one-inch margins on all sides, double-spaced, headers for each section, and proper citations as required with APA 6th edition writing format. For your headings, use only a few words; the words you select should be descriptive of the information under the heading. If you include tables, figures, or charts, they must be placed in a separate appendix, not in the body of your paper. If your paper does not comply with this format, you will lose credit.

The following links provide online writing aids to help you with your paper assignments.


There will be five quizzes for this course, which you should take after you complete the reading assignments and discussion forums. Each quiz will consist of 20 multiple choice questions and will be worth 4 percent of your total grade, for a total of 20 percent of your final grade. You may take the quizzes multiple times for additional practice; the result of your most recent attempt will appear in your gradebook. You can consult the Course Calendar to see the recommended due dates for the quizzes.

Final Project - Position Paper

Juvenile Delinquency requires you write a position paper as a final paper. Your objective in writing this position paper is to define an issue clearly and to formulate and clarify your position on that issue by reacting to a controversial statement. You will also submit a proposal for your paper during Week 7 of the course.

For the guidelines and requirements of the paper, you may access the Final Paper section of the course website.


Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:






























Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a course not in your area of study), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings, etc.).


First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The University expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the University community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > “Citing Sources.”)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

Copyright © 2018 by Thomas Edison State University. All rights reserved.