CRJ and FRS Practicum Paper Outline


All LEJA students will be required to complete a summary paper, typed (double-spaced), that evaluates, summarizes, and discusses their practicum experience as compared to classroom knowledge gained. The purpose of this paper is for all students to reflect conscientiously on their practicum. This paper is meant to provide students an opportunity to express their thoughts, opinions, and views of the practicum experience. In addition, through this analysis students should be able to identify areas of personal growth and maturation. Students should also comment about any other items/events that played an important part in their practicum experience or academic career as it relates to their criminal justice/forensic pursuits. The following outline must be followed when organizing the paper (relevant additions are allowed and encouraged):


I.          Introduction to Practicum Agency

A.        Location, size, type of agency, mission

B.        Personnel, organizational structure, departmental break­down


II.        Perceptions of Staff Functioning and Relationships

A.        Discuss how staff functioned as a unit, related to each other

B.        Explain how staff related to intern, how intern related to staff

C.        Explain how staff related to the general public, how gen­eral public related to staff

D.        Explain how intern related to general public, how general public related to intern


III.       Perceptions of Staff and Client* Relationships (*includes defen­dant, probationer, customer, etc.)

A.        Perceptions concerning treatment of clients encountered by the staff

B.        Perceptions concerning treatment of staff encountered by clients



IV.       Interesting Case Studies, Events, and/or Experiences

A.        Major activities, responsibilities, during practicum

B.        Memorable experiences, lasting impressions


V.        View on how Academic Background was of Value during Practicum

A.        Discuss how the required coursework was beneficial dur­ing practicum

B.        Discuss those academic requirements, if any, which were not useful during practicum

C.        Identify any additional coursework you would have liked to complete prior to practicum


VI.       Detailed Personal Critique of Self

A.        Individual growth

B.        Professional growth

C.        Individual performance

D.        Discuss what was gained from the practicum experience

E.         Explain how your individual performance could have been improved


VII.     Extent that Practicum Will Help Plan to Actualize or Imple­ment what was Learned for Future Growth

A.        Discuss if you still desire to pursue your career goals and objectives

B.        Discuss how or if your practicum changed your attitude or perception of the criminal justice field

C.        Discuss how or if you can make a difference

D.        Discuss how the practicum experience will help you be successful in your career pursuits


VIII.    Conclusion

A.        Explain if you would recommend the practicum program to future students

B.        Having completed the practicum, discuss whether you would or would not make the same decisions again

C.        Other concluding comments



Additionally, students are encouraged to include documents, video tapes, training materials, and information on their practicum agency, or others, they feel would be helpful to the practicum coordinator and/or other faculty and students. Students can also include a section in their paper where they develop an itinerary of activities they experienced or wished they had an opportunity to experience. Basically, students should start their paper with an introduction to their practicum agency and finish it with a conclusion. In between students should discuss their practicum experiences, what they did, the relationships they built, what they got out of the practicum, what they would change, what experiences had the greatest impact, least impact, and of course why or why not to each item. Look in the mirror and ask yourself who are you, what have you done, what are you planning to do, are you happy, and if given the opportunity knowing what you know today would you do it again (turn back the clock and relive the experience)?



Practicum Paper Sections II and III Clarifications:


Section III focuses on the staff and your perception (opinion, observations) of how they treated the people they dealt with (interacted with) throughout their day, and then turn that around and give your opinion (perception) of how the public (clients) treated the staff (employees) they encountered (interacted with). When you meet someone there is an interaction (good, bad, neutral, etc.). In sections two and three you are just giving your thoughts (opinions, perspective) about those interactions. Was

everyone treated professionally, the same? Did the public respect the Officers, treat them fairly?


Section III pertains to your perceptions of relationships between the department personnel and anyone they come into contact with. Basically how the department (personnel -- sworn and non-sworn) deals with the public and relates to them and visa-a-versa (that also includes you, how you got along with staff and the public and how they got along with you).


Perceptions of Staff and Client* Relationships (*includes defendant, suspect, probationer, customer, etc.); in other words what were your perceptions concerning treatment of clients (individuals/public/suspects that the staff encountered and your perceptions concerning how the public treated the staff (department personnel). Did everyone get along, happy with each other, why or why not, etc.? Section III is similar to Section II except that it is looking more at the people (suspects, defendants, customer) you are coming in contact with rather than the general public as a whole (i.e., you witness someone receiving a ticket or be arrested for a crime; what/how were you treated and how did you treat them?). Section II, you are eating in a restaurant or walking through the business district, how are you treated, how do you treat the public?