Eating the Menu Instead of the Food

Some Critical Downsides of Online Pedagogy for Criminal Justice Students and Faculties


  • Thomas Michael Kelley Wayne State University


online pedagogy, mental health education, victimization courses, correctional counseling courses, academic freedom


The most significant change to impact the pedagogy of criminal justice (CJ) students and faculties in recent years is the development of online education. Often, with no guiding theory, or research supporting the efficacy of online pedagogy, CJ faculties have been thrown, like it or not, into the world of online education. The author posits that the rush to online pedagogy has some critical downsides for CJ students and faculties. Online teaching exacerbates the neglect of a critical educational need for CJ students—promoting their mental health, and their understanding of the association of this health with every facet of the CJ system. Also, online instruction is poorly suited for several CJ courses; particularly those focused on victimization and counseling skills and strategies. Furthermore, forcing tenured CJ professors to teach online appears to violate their right to remain true to their pedagogical philosophies, professional training, ethical standards, and intellectual commitments.





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