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CRJS 410

Criminal Justice (CRJS) 410
Special Needs Policing (Revision 2)

Revision 2 closed, replaced by current version.

Delivery mode: Individualized study or grouped study.

Credits: 3 - Applied Studies.

Prerequisite: None.

Centre: Centre for State and Legal Studies

CRJS 410 has a Challenge for Credit option.

Course website


CRJS 410 aims to provide students with a broad understanding of the policing needs within a community, the diversity within a community, and how needs change over time.

By examining various special needs groups, students will see that as the dynamics of a community change, so does the way in which it is policed. Identification of some target groups in many Canadian jurisdictions who may be defined as special needs will be focused upon: Aboriginal people, gay and lesbian people, children, battered women, the elderly, immigrants, and the physically challenged. This list is far from exhaustive, and the course allows students to leave these prescribed boundaries to examine other interest groups.

Initially, the course will look at the history of the police in Canada and the evolution of various policing roles.

Later, students will be asked to examine the movement of certain sociological issues which involve the police force, while always considering the question: Who are the groups, or perhaps even the individuals, in our society who have special needs which must be taken into account by police?


CRJS 410 is divided into ten units as follows:

Unit 1: History of Policing

Unit 2: Types of Policing in Canada

Unit 3: Identification of Special Needs in Policing

Unit 4: Aboriginal Peoples

Unit 5: The Elderly

Unit 6: Women

Unit 7: People with Disabilities

Unit 8: Children

Unit 9: Homosexuals, Bisexuals, and Transgendered People

Unit 10: Ethnic, Religious, and Cultural Minorities


To receive credit for CRJS 410, you must achieve an average mark of 50 percent on the course assignments, a mark of at least 50 percent on the final examination, and a course composite grade of at least "D" 50 percent.  The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assign 1 Assign 2 Assign 3 Assign 4 Final Exam Total
10% 20% 20% 20% 30% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Stansfield, R. T. 1996. Issues in Policing: A Canadian Perspective. Toronto: Educational Publishing, Inc.

Other materials

The course materials also include a study guide, student manual and reading file.