This unit (LCR1002) introduces students to the history, sociology, and politics of policing and corrections. The unit examines the administration of justice from the reporting and detection of crime through to the correctional regimes of offenders. It highlights important debates around issues of accountability, and traces the historical shape of policing and corrections that have led to the features and characteristics of contemporary institutions and practices. In addition to exploring the domain of policy, we focus on a number of key challenges and issues that confront police and corrections officers in their day to day working lives. The unit is underpinned by an interest in questions around balancing the power of the state, identifying the rights and protections afforded citizens through the 'rule of law' and democratic safeguards, and exploring the powers that are exercised in the processes of investigating crime and sanctioning individuals.

Unit details

Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Identify and describe the evolution of policing and corrections and explain the sometimes complex demands on policing in the field and at a policy level  
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of the aims and purposes of sentencing and correctional practices  
  3. Explain the concept of accountability and explain how it plays out in the organisational and operational domain of policing  
  4. Analyse and discuss the effect of politics on policing offenders and society  
  5. Present ideas clearly and logically, in verbal and written forms, to peers and non-expert audiences  
  6. Work collaboratively with peers to write and present on key issues.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Essay Students to prepare an essay plan (400 words). 20%
Essay An individual 1,500 word based on the essay plan 40%
Presentation A group presentation in week 4 on a selected topic 40%
A textbook and weekly recommended reading will underpin the unit.

Required reading

Crime, Criminality and Criminal Justice 2nd
Rob White and Santina Perrone (2016)
OUP Aust.

This textbook is shared with LCR1001 Introduction to Criminology. Recommended readings will be made available via the unit's VU Collaborate site.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this unit information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that unit information is current with the Student Contact Centre.