Communities and Crime
Criminal Justice 633
Fall 2003

on the web at: www/
instructor main web site: 

Memo added that lists possible final quiz questions, and that talks about final paper requirements


TO: Folks in 633:


DATE: 11/25/03

Hiya. Hope all is well.

I am in all day tomorrow if you have questions. You also can ring me today at the home number.

I drew some random numbers; here are the students who are to present NEXT MONDAY: 12/1:






These students will present 12/8:





As I mentioned yesterday, I know this is a work in progress, for each of you.

Plan on a 15 – 20 minute presentation, and we will follow with questions. You want to have a script you can read, and powerpoint.

Please read Jerry’s rules about powerpoint, and about presenting. Please also read Ralph’s rules of presenting. All of these links are on the department website

and go to the grad section.

Your presentation will have the following portions:

  • statement of the problem – brief
  • review of the relevant literature (keep this from overwhelming the rest of your presentation)
  • end with statement of hypotheses or description of your model
  • describe your data and your variables
  • say what analyses you have conducted or hope to conduct
  • say what your results are if you have any
  • comments on implication for theory and/or (preferably and not or) policy

I will be rating you on

quality of presentation (eye contact, clear, organized text; appropriate speed of delivery)

extent to which you rely on relevant course readings

clarity of ideas presented

balance between different parts of the presentation

ability to respond to questions

Classroom structure  
Sequence of Topics - subject to changes  
Explanation of grading and assignments  
Grading policies  
Main texts  
Question sets  
Questions for midterm; some answers too  
Questions for final and comments about final paper and deadlines  
timeline for paper preparations; other documents  

Usage policies and legal notice. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials on this page and linked pages at the addresses are the sole property of Ralph B. Taylor and © 1999-2003 by Ralph B. Taylor. None of the materials presented here represent the opinions or policies of Temple University. All these pages were converted from text pages and created as web pages by R. B. Taylor in his spare, discretionary time and not as part of required instructional activities, but rather as potential enhancements. Further, the preparation and storage of all these pages did not and does not involve Temple University resources in any manner. All users have the right to freely access and copy these pages provided that they: acknowledge the source, do not make changes on any pages, and do not charge more than copying costs for distribution.  Further, all users by accessing these pages do thereby indemnify the author of the pages appearing herein, or of pages at other sites, from any and all liability arising from any variety of defects, inaccuracies, or misrepresentations appearing therein, or from any uses to which these materials are put.



R. B. Taylor


Monday: 3 - 5:30, Gladfelter 533 


509 Gladfelter

Office Hours

Monday 2 - 3, 5:30 - 6:30, and by appointment as needed


215.204.7169 (v); 610.446.9023 (fax). You also can ring 1-1376 and ask Ms. Scott if I am available or around, or Ms. Salerno (1-7918) if we need to chat and the phone is not being picked up. Email:  and also be sure to send a second copy to 

Special Services. Students who may require special services should notify the instructor at the earliest opportunity, and I will put you into contact with the Office of Special Services at Temple. You may require special services if you are sight or hearing impaired, or if you wish to register for gaining extra time for taking exams or completing assignments.

In this course you will learn about the connections between features of community, and crime, fear and disorder, at various levels of analysis ranging from the community to the streetblock. You will read about varying theoretical perspectives on these connections, and come to understand the strengths and weakness of these various perspectives. You will then apply these various perspectives and tools to case studies and actual locations.

For those of you wishing to go on next semester and pursue these topics from a more geographical perspective, the graduate course "Geographic perspectives on crime" taught by Dr. Jerry Ratcliffe, will start to teach you specific skills for analyzing community and crime connections using ARCGIS.




We will discuss in class the nature of academic misconduct, including plagiarism. You are responsible for understanding the different varieties of academic misconduct, and for understanding the Graduate School's policies as described below.  If I encounter solid evidence of academic misconduct I will discuss the matter with you, and then deliver the consequence I deem appropriate. Possible consequences include: failure on the assignment in question (i.e., a 0); assigning a failing grade for the course; or attempting to have you expelled from Temple University. Should you wish to contest a decision I make on academic misconduct, I will inform you of the procedures to follow. The department and the college have fully specified grievance procedures for graduate students. 

The following materials are from the University's Graduate Bulletin statements on academic honesty [   - go to regulations]

Academic Honesty

Temple University believes strongly in academic honesty and integrity; therefore, any kind of academic dishonesty is prohibited. Essential to intellectual growth is the development of independent thought and of a respect for the thoughts of others. The prohibition against academic dishonesty is intended to foster this independence and respect. Primarily, the two types of academic dishonesty include the following: Plagiarism and Academic Cheating.

Plagiarism is the unacknowledged use of another person’s labor, ideas, words, or assistance. Normally, all work done for courses — papers, examinations, homework exercises, laboratory reports, oral presentations — is expected to be the individual effort of the student presenting the work. There are many forms of plagiarism: repeating another person’s sentence as your own, adopting a particularly apt phrase as your own, paraphrasing someone else’s argument as your own, or even presenting someone else’s line of thinking in the development of a thesis as though it were your own. All these forms of plagiarism are prohibited both by the traditional principles of academic honesty and by the regulations of Temple University. Our education and our research encourage us to explore and use the ideas of others, and as writers we will frequently want to use the ideas and even the words of others. It is perfectly acceptable to do so; but we must never submit someone else’s work as if it were our own, rather we must give appropriate credit to the originator.

Academic Cheating is, generally, the thwarting or breaking of the general rules of academic work or the specific rules of the individual courses. Some examples include: falsifying data; submitting, without the instructor’s approval, work in one course that was done for another; helping others to plagiarize; or cheating from one’s own or another’s work; or actually doing the work of another person.

The penalty for academic dishonesty can vary from a reprimand and receiving a failing grade for a particular assignment, to a failing grade in a course, suspension, or expulsion from the University. The penalty varies with the nature of the offense, the individual instructor, the department, and the school or college.

For more information about what constitutes Academic Dishonesty or about disciplinary and/or academic grievance procedures refer to the University’s Statement on Academic Honesty and the Student Code of Conduct or contact the Student Assistance Center, 215-204-8531.

Makeup Policy

There will be no makeups for a missed final exam unless

* you notify me before the missed exam

* and you have a reason for missing the exam that I find valid (e.g., car accident) (I no longer accept excuses like your friend's grandmother dying.)

* and I have something in writing, for my records, verifying the nature of the problem.

 Late Assignments

Assignments are due on the date indicated. I reserve the right to lower the grade for assignments that are handed in late. The amount the grade is lowered increases the longer the delay in handing the assignment in. Depending on the assignment, the grade may be lowered 1% to 10% a day.

If you have an excuse for a late assignment I will take this in to account only if you notify me beforehand about the problem and I find your excuse for the delay to be a valid one and I have something in writing. Again, a friend's grandfather's death may be questionable.


Regrading Policy

You have the right to submit any assignment for regrading. If you wish to submit an assignment for regrading proceed as follows:

 Prepare a written statement explaining why the assignment should be regraded. This applies to written assignments, essay exams, and multiple choice exam questions where you think there was more than one correct answer.

 On a cover sheet print your name, SSN, name of the assignment or test, date of the assignment or test, and the date you submitted the assignment for regrading.

Staple the cover sheet to your written rationale and the original assignment.

I will review your request for regrading. I will consult with other faculty if I deem that appropriate. As a result of your request for regrading the grade on your original assignment may stay the same, or it may go up, or it may go down.

Grading Standards for Papers
It is expected that the papers you turn in will have several features, in addition to being interesting, engaging, and original.
* They will be well edited. I will take off for mis-spellings and flagrantly poor grammar, and for poor organization.

Although there are no specific pre-requisites for this course, at the outset I am assuming you have the following skill set:
* An understanding of the general linear model, i.e., you grasp  the purposes and approach of the multiple regression model; and
* An ability to interpret multiple regression tables and related tabular and graphical displays like causal model results, or logit or probit results.

Classroom Structure
Although there may be a bit of lecturing here and there as I attempt to orient you to what I think are the key issues in the field, for the most part classes will consist of:
* You answering questions about the readings, and posing questions about the readings;
* You presenting readings; and/or
* You presenting the results of your project

When you come to class each week, you will hand in a copy of your typed answers to the questions that were previously distributed. You will keep one copy for yourself.

You will be asked -- perhaps every week, perhaps less frequently -- to read your answer to a question in order to start the discussion.

You will be allowed to take one "pass" per class -- that is, to defer from reading your answer to a question. I am allowing this because although I expect you to answer MOST of the questions for each week, I do not expect you to answer ALL of the questions. Stated differently, each week you can not answer one question.

It is vital that you not miss a class unless it is absolutely impossible to attend.

Main Readings
The main books we will be reading from are the following. You can find these in the bookstore, except for Taylor (1988); I will give you copies of this text. If you are strapped for money right this minute, I would not buy Harcourt, but put that off for a bit.

For the volume I am currently working on, I will be emailing those files to you, chapter by chapter, the Wednesday prior to the class for which those readings are due.

For a few additional readings, I also will be emailing you pdf files, or making reprints available.

Bursik, R. J., Jr., & Grasmick, H. (1993). Neighborhoods and crime. Lexington: Lexington. [B&G]

Simon, D., & Burns, E. (1997). The Corner: A Year in the life of an inner-city neighborhood. New York: Broadway Books. [S&B]

Taylor, R. B. (1988). Human territorial functioning: An Empirical, evolutionary perspective on individual and small group territorial cognitions, behaviors, and consequences. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [HTF]

Taylor, R. B. (2000). Breaking Away from Broken Windows: Evidence from Baltimore Neighborhoods and the Nationwide Fight Against Crime, Grime, Fear and Decline. New York: Westview Press. [BAFBW]

Taylor, R. B. (in preparation). Communities and Crime. [C&C]

Venkatesh, S. A. (2000). American Project. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.