In order to thrive in a field such as criminal justice, continuous learning is a must. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to go back to school, you just have to be updated on the latest news and trends in the field. There are many good journals and associations out there that provide quality information and membership. Here are some below.
Journals often publish changes not just in law enforcement procedures, but also updates in the present law code. More than that, it’s also important to be updated with the latest breakthroughs in forensic science. Subscribing to journals allows you the convenience to not have to attend lectures, seminars, or workshops. Different journals specialize in a particular criminal justice field. Here is a quick glance at some of the criminal justice journals currently published.
- The Corrections Compendium – The Corrections Compendium is published by the American Correctional Association. Most of its published content are research-based and peer-reviewed. Published four times a year, every issue contains a combination of featured articles as well as state and national news on the criminal justice field. Furthermore, they also publish commentaries by professional and academics in addition to international profiles and book reviews.
- Journal of Forensic Sciences – The American Academy of Forensic Science publishes this journal for an exclusive audience of paid subscribers. Their issues are often about current trends on forensic science topics. You can also expect news on regulatory updates, technology advances, and new research methods. A subscription will provide members with access to over 7,000 pages of their back issues.
- Journal of Criminal Justice – Published only six times a year, the Journal of Criminal Justice covers both national and international topics in the field. Aside from discussing corrections issues and police policies, they also issue incisive insights on how society is interwoven with chronic offenders. Additionally, they also publish topics on rehabilitation practices and how technology has affected law enforcement on the whole.
Bulletins and Magazines:
- The FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin – This bulletin was established in the 1930s and has been FBI’s way to publish related topics on the law enforcement community. Articles typically cover a broad range of topics. They typically publish pieces on police patrolling, changes in protocols, effective firearms training, as well as legislative and judicial issues.
- PI Magazine – Although PI magazine is not a research-based journal, it is an informative magazine that can be used for reference for a variety of current topics. Magazine features often tackle surveillance techniques. They also discuss the advantages and disadvantages of working for different organizations. Also included are small business tips, book recommendations, and technology reviews. They also publish future investigation workshops and seminars.
There are different associations committed to particular specializations in the criminal justice field. Joining these associations is an amazing way to get updated on the latest industry news. It’s also a good way to find out about upcoming training, workshops, and seminars. Moreover, these associations can offer you the opportunity to extend your network. Below is a partial list of active national associations you might want to join.
- National Association of Police Organizations – NAPO presses on problems that are significant to police officers across the nation. The association regularly hosts an annual convention as well as seminars on both legal and legislative issues. They are also the ones who are in charge of the TOP COP awards known to bestow recognition to officers who have exhibited stellar service for that particular year. Another great resource is their website where they typically post news about legislative events. They typically publish events that have affected or is bound to affect the law enforcement community.
- Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association – This non-profit association takes pride in being non-partisan. They represent law enforcement officers as a whole from over 65 different federal agencies. Their main goal is to update their members on legislative issues that can foreseeably affect their jobs. Both retired and current officers are usually encouraged to join. More importantly, the association offers a scholarship program for the children of retired, deceased, and current members.
- United States Association of Professional Investigators – This association is the only nationwide organization geared toward professional investigators. Members can network through arranged regional conferences and seminars where they can learn about the latest news and trends in the industry. There’s also a list of services available in an exclusive directory for members.
Crime and Corrections Association:
- American Correctional Association – For over a century, this association has been known to uphold the welfare of corrections workers around the world. They offer accredited corrections training programs that can be taken online. Programs range anywhere from emphasizing mental health, community corrections, adult corrections, as well as juvenile justice. There are also ample networking opportunities at their yearly conferences and training workshops. Aside from these, they also regularly publish corrections positions.
- American Academy of Forensic Science – AAFS membership is geared toward crime lab technicians, criminalists, as well as lawyers and document examiners, to name a few. Their programs often promote professional development, opportunity to network as well as job boards for job seekers in the field. Students who are interested in this field can also participate in their forum aptly named Young Forensic Scientist’s Forum. This forum provides a learning and teaching avenue for all members.
- The International Crime Scene Investigators Association – This association is aimed at individuals working as C.S.I. agents or considering on becoming one. The association’s site provides links to future seminars and workshops across the country. They also host a job board and imparts valuable information on certification and training programs. Those who want to pursue a career as a C.S.I. agent will have the opportunity to learn more about the profession. Some of the things they can learn are crime scene photography and basic crime scene processing once they join.