Professor Peter C. Moskos
John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Department of Law, Police Science, and Criminal Justice Administration
General Links (please notify me if there are dead links or you have suggestions):
Grammar 101! Online, PDF version, or buy the booklet on Amazon.com. Do you have trouble with basic English writing? Did they not even teach English grammar in high school? Still kind of wondering what really makes a sentence complete or a subject and verb agree? Not confident with commas? If you answer yes to any of these, then Grammar 101 is for you!
And here's a good guide to basic English grammar, TalkEnglish.com, geared toward ESL (English as a second language) students.
If I'm grading your papers, you'll get a better if you read these formating notes and 10 general rules for writing.
Social Science Writing Style is a very useful guide to help you write your academic papers (ie: most everything you write in college). Written by my colleague, Professor Schulz, I couldn't have said it better myself, so I didn't. If you follow the advice and guidelines she provides for writing papers, you'll get a better grade on your papers in my class.
What does it mean to write an "academic" paper? At the very least, cited academic sources. Read this for a list of accepted academic sources.
Check out this 100-year-old version of The Elements of Style. It's a bit dated at times, as you might hope. But it's still a surprisngly useful and accessable guide to writing. You can buy the current version in the bookstore for less than $10.
Here's an incomplete and somewhat dated list of books and articles related to police and crime prevention.
In college you must learn and use an accepted citation style, such as American Sociological Association (ASA) style, MLA, or American Psychological Association (APA) style. As a sociologist, I'm partial to ASA, even though John Jay College has a thing for APA. Here is a great guide to APA style: http://irsc.libguides.com/apa/about.
Generally, in the text, an author's last name is followed by the year of publication in parenthesis. When listing references in a bibliography, the necessary information includes book name, book author, place of publication, year of publication, and publisher must be listed. For instance: Moskos, Peter. 2009. Cop in the Hood: My Year in Baltimore's Eastern District. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. For an article, you must include the article title and the journal title and volume. For instance: Moskos, Peter. 2007. "Nine-One-One and the Failure of Police Rapid Response." Law Enforcement Executive Forum. 7(4): 137-150.
Simple, easy, get it right.
L.E.A.P.: Law Enforcment Against Prohibition consists of current and former members of law enforcement who support drug regulation rather than prohibition.
Drug War Facts offers statistics related to the war on drugs.
The U.C.R. for all your crime statistics needs.
IPUMS is where the statistical fun begins. Access to census data for researchers.
Crime and Justice News for Criminal Justice Journalists. Get all the day's news you can use, if, of course, you are interested in crime and justice news. I subscribe to their daily mailing list.
Officer Down Memorial Page is dedicated to the memory of police officers killed in the line of duty.