Each week you will be assigned a topic to discuss in the Discussions area. You will also be expected to respond to two of your classmates’ original discussion posts. Discussion topics may or may not be rooted in the textbook. Discussions are worth 15 points.
Read what others have posted. You must read comments made by others in the class to get full credit for that discussion. While you will be restricted from posting comments to the discussion after each midnight Wednesday deadline, you can (and must) read the “vast majority” of what others have posted. Discussion posts will be available to read all week long until Sunday each week. This is part of the learning process.
Write in paragraph form. A paragraph is a distinct division of written matter, a single idea, containing one or more sentences with the first line indented. Points are deducted when paragraph form is not used. Use your knowledge gained from the assigned reading to create very specific, detailed responses.
Synthesize: Some may say that I expect you to “regurgitate” what is in the textbook but this is not the case. Rather, information in the textbook is important to the course and the material you will need to know upon completion of this course. It is expected that students will also move beyond the text, readings and multimedia provided, and support their discussions with individual research.
You will prepare a general order (G.O.) and a standard operating procedure (S.O.P.) as part of the requirements for this course. The topics are selected by you, but must be approved by the instructor no later than Sunday of Week 2. Topics must be contemporary to criminal justice operations. Examples include, but are not limited to, use of force, vehicle operations, weapons topics, social networks, standards of conduct, investigative strategies, etc. Once the topics are selected and approved, you will conduct appropriate research to support development of the general order and SOP, then create an outline of the content. Keep in mind that topics will be approved on a first come-first approved basis. Typically, the instructor will not approve the same topic for multiple students.
The G.O. draft is due by midnight on Sunday of Week 4. You will upload the draft into the appropriate discussion topic for peer review. This review, due by midnight Wednesday of Week 6, is meant to provide feedback to you for use in fine-tuning the G.O. before final submission to the Dropbox by midnight Sunday Week 6.
The S.O.P. draft is due by midnight on Sunday of Week 5. You will upload the draft into the appropriate discussion topic for peer review. This review, due by midnight Wednesday of Week 7, is meant to provide feedback to you for use in fine-tuning the S.O.P. before final submission to the Dropbox by midnight Sunday Week 7.
Both the G.O. and the S.O.P. must include a cover memorandum (in the form of an executive summary) that addresses the following:
1. A brief summary of the G.O. or S.O.P. content
2. A dissemination plan
3. A training plan
4. An inspection and review plan
All documents must be in Microsoft Word format.
Formatting is up to you, but documents should have a logical flow and be well organized. Heading, subheadings, and footnotes should be included. In short, the finished product should be “polished” and look like an official document. There are numerous departments that post their G.O. and S.O.P. manuals online. These would be a good source for formatting examples. Keep in mind that written assignments require APA formatting/cites; this section only applies to G.O. and S.O.P. documents. Moreover, footnotes are only required for these documents; they are not required in your discussion posts.
These assignments are worth 40 points each.
The final products will be assessed based on the following criteria:
Clearly written and easy to use/follow
Consistent with legal requirements and/or limitations
Reflects and incorporates accepted state and national best practices
Includes a viable dissemination and training plan
Includes an inspection and revision plan
Free of spelling and grammatical errors
References follow APA citation format
Each of the criteria will be measured as follows:
5-Meets or exceeds standard
Consider that any spelling or grammatical errors is unacceptable; therefore, you would receive 0 points if any are found in the final product.
For information on APA formatting, visit the Columbia College Writing Center: http://web.ccis.edu/Offices/AcademicResources/WritingCenter.
Original Work Required
You are encouraged to look at other general orders and standard operating procedures. This can include existing real-world documents as well as model policies such as those developed by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and similar state associations. However, documents turned in by students in this class must be original work product. Copy and paste is not acceptable and would be viewed as academic dishonesty. Do your own research and your own work.
Peer Review Requirements
You are to review all the general order and standard operating procedure drafts posted in the discussion forums during Week 4 and Week 5. You must also provide feedback to your peers once you review the documents. Feedback should be constructive. Simply stating “Good job…” or “Great post…” is not acceptable; this would not constitute feedback for the purposes of these assignments. Once peer reviews are completed, you should take note of the feedback and make corrections and/or modifications to the respective documents as necessary. Failure to complete all peer reviews will result in a 10 point deduction from your final grade for the assignment to which the paper is related (G.O.; S.O.P; or both).
Posting Final Papers
Each Dropbox assignment must be posted to the appropriate folder in the Dropbox area of the course by midnight Sunday of the assigned week. Late submissions are not accepted so plan ahead. Dropbox assignments not properly submitted (uploaded) will not be accepted.
Note on Research References: Research references may come from the World Wide Web, library, other textbooks, individuals currently employed or retired from the criminal justice system, and other valid resources. All research references must be listed with each assignment and presented in APA format. Research references must identify the specific web site from which information was obtained. Listing a generic web site is not acceptable such as www.google.com, www.wikipedia.com etc. Five points are deducted when research references are not appropriately listed. Research is required for every Discussion and Dropbox assignment after the first week of class, and a minimum of two references are required for each.
Note on Writing Assignments: All writing assignments must be prepared in MS Word and be properly submitted through the Dropbox utility. No emailed papers will be accepted. Furthermore, “Turnitin” will evaluate all papers for originality. Should the instructor deem the “Originality Index” too high, the paper may not be accepted. Therefore, you must turn in original work and any material taken from outside sources must be properly cited.