Skip to Content

Course : Judicial Systems & Practice--Fall 2022

Course Number
Section Number
Fall 2022
Martin Hall, 108
Jeff McKnight
Days & Times
Final Exam Day/Time
Tuesday, November 29, 2022 6:00 pm - 8:50 pm

While entertaining, the portrayal of the criminal justice system on television is not accurate.  The objective of this course is to provide an accurate picture of America’s Courts and how the criminal justice system works within the structure of the court system, from start to finish.


Decorum: You are expected to conduct yourself in a professional and respectful manner. You are a representative of this class and Midwestern State University and should act accordingly. 


Integrity: Honesty and integrity are of the utmost importance in the professional world. These attributes will also be a pillar of this class. As you work towards your career in the criminal justice system, you must understand that your livelihood, and people’s freedom, depend on your integrity. A reputation takes a lifetime to achieve, and seconds to destroy.

         Each student is expected to abide by the rules of ethical and academic honesty as contained in the Midwestern State University Student Handbook. All cases of academic dishonesty, cheating or other unethical behavior will result in an automatic “F” for the course and a letter to be directed to the Dean of Students for further disciplinary action. 


Electronic Devices: The use of cell phones and other electronic devices is strictly prohibited in the classroom. If you wish to use an electronic device for purposes related to the class, prior written permission must be obtained from the professor. 

         Prior to entering the classroom, all cell phones must be turned off. If any phone or electronic device rings or otherwise disrupts the class, the owner of said phone will be required to leave class and an absence will be entered for their attendance. Texting or using an electronic device in an unapproved manner will result in the deduction of one (1) letter grade from your final course grade.

         Audio and/or video recording of any portion of the course is strictly prohibited, without prior written approval of the professor. Any person found to be recording any portion of the course, without prior written permission, will be receive an automatic “F” for the course. 


Class Preparation and Participation:  Preparation, attendance and participation are expected. Failure to prepare, failure to attend, and failure to participate will adversely affect your final grade. You must come to class prepared to discuss the materials to be addressed in accordance with the course schedule. You should be prepared for each class in a manner that allows you to ask appropriate questions, answer questions or engage in dialogue with the professor or other classmates regarding the topics to be addressed. Remember, your participation will be counted as part of your final grade.    

Attendance Policy: You are expected to attend all class meetings, following the university attendance policy. Attendance will be taken and will be a part of your grade. If you are tardy, it will be counted as an absence. Just as absences and tardiness are unacceptable in the professional word, it is equally unacceptable in this class. 

Absences will be dealt with in accordance with the Class Attendance Policy as contained in the Midwestern State University Student Handbook; including, but not limited to, dropping a student from a class for excessive absences. 

It will be very difficult to pass this course without attending class. Therefore, if you miss more than three (3) classes throughout the semester, you will receive an automatic “F” for the course. If a class absence is unavoidable, you must obtain written approval from the professor prior to missing class.  The determination of what constitutes an excused absence is solely within the discretion of the professor.

Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception.

Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters.

We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student.

We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed.

Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, (940) 397-4140.

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MSUTexas e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed the 6 hours of Communication Core and 2) earned 60 hours. Students may meet this requirement in one of three ways: by passing the Writing Proficiency Exam, passing two Writing Intensive Courses (only one can be in the core), or passing English 2113. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.

Senate Bill 11 passed by the 84th Texas Legislature allows licensed handgun holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, effective August 1, 2016. Areas excluded from concealed carry are appropriately marked, in accordance with state law. For more information regarding campus carry, please refer to the University’s webpage at

If you have questions or concerns, please contact MSU Chief of Police Patrick Coggins at