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Week 6: The Future of Corrections

April 4, 2021
Brenda I. Belcher

Week 6: The Future of Corrections

In the beginning of the course, you explored the history and evolution of corrections. In doing so, you examined historical themes that continue to persist in the contemporary correctional system. Now, you will look to the future of corrections. What existing themes or trends might impact how the correctional system operates in the future? What can you do to positively influence the correctional system in the future?

This week, you consider these questions and others as you reflect on the future of corrections.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze the impact of existing corrections trends on the future of corrections
  • Apply knowledge of corrections to positive social change    

Learning Resources

Required Readings

Krisberg, B. A., Marchionna, S., & Hartney, C. J. (2018). American corrections: Concepts and controversies (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.Chapter 15, “The Privatization of Corrections” (pp. 364–391)American Corrections: Concepts and Controversies, 2nd Edition by Krisberg, B. A.; Marchionna, S.; Hartney, C. J. Copyright 2018 by SAGE Publications, Inc. Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications, Inc. via the Copyright Clearance Center.
Krisberg, B. A., Marchionna, S., & Hartney, C. J. (2018). American corrections: Concepts and controversies (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.Chapter 16, “The Politics and Future of Mass Incarceration” (pp. 392–417)
Note: Each chapter in the bullet list above links to a downloadable PDF.American Corrections: Concepts and Controversies, 2nd Edition by Krisberg, B. A.; Marchionna, S.; Hartney, C. J. Copyright 2018 by SAGE Publications, Inc. Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications, Inc. via the Copyright Clearance Center.
Stohr, M. K., & Walsh, A. (2017). Corrections: the essentials (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.Chapter 17, “Corrections in the 21st Century” (pp. 372–388)Corrections: The Essentials, 3rd Edition by Stohr, M. K.; Walsh, A. Copyright 2017 by SAGE Publications, Inc. Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications, Inc via the Copyright Clearance Center.
Eisenberg, A. K. (2016). Incarceration incentives in the decarceration era. Vanderbilt Law Review, 69(1), 71–139.Penal Reform International. (n.d.). Global prison trends series. Retrieved from https://www.penalreform.org/resource/global-prison-trends-series/

Required Media

Van Buren, D. (2017, November). What a world without prisons could look like [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.ted.com/talks/deanna_van_buren_what_a_world_without_prisons_could_look_like


Discussion: The Future of Corrections

In this Discussion, you explore the impact of current correctional trends on the future of corrections. This week’s Learning Resources provide information about several different trends; however, it is also a good idea to do your own research as trends can quickly come and go. As you think about which trends will have a lasting impact on the future correctional system, it is important to consider how the social, economic, and political context might affect the impact and persistence of some trends over others. You may find it useful to revisit Learning Resources from the beginning of the course about the social, economic, and political factors that prompted major reforms in the correctional system.

To upload your media to this Discussion thread, use the Kaltura Media option from the mashup tool drop-down menu. Refer to the Kaltura Media Uploader area in the course navigation menu for more information about how to upload media to the course.

By Day 3

Post a 3- to 5-minute video in which you respond to the following questions:

  • Which corrections trend do you think will have the most lasting impact on the future of corrections? Why?
  • How will this trend positively and/or negatively affect the future of corrections?

By Day 5

Respond to at least two colleagues:

  • Choose a response that is different from your own.
  • Offer an additional explanation for how the trend your colleague discussed might positively or negatively impact the future of corrections. 

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 6 Discussion Rubric

Post by Day 3 and Respond by Day 5

To participate in this Discussion:Week 6 Discussion


Journal: Corrections and Social Change

Throughout the course, you have considered many social justice issues related to the correctional system, such as the inhumane treatment of inmates, disparities in sentencing, disproportionate punishments, and racial bias and discrimination. As a Walden student, you are encouraged to carry out the university’s mission of social change by seizing opportunities to make positive and lasting impacts in your profession and community. In this Journal, you consider how you will use your newfound knowledge about corrections to effect positive social change. 

By Day 7

Write a 300-word Journal response to the following prompt:

  • How will you use what you learned about the correctional system to effect positive social change as a private citizen and/or in your current or future role as a criminal justice practitioner? Be specific.

Submission and Grading Information

To submit your completed Journal for review and grading, do the following:

  • Click the Week 6 Journal Rubric to review the Grading Criteria for the Assignment.
  • Click the Week 6 Journal link. 
  • Next, click Create Journal Link.
  • In the title box, enter the title of the Journal Entry. Please title it: WK6Journal+last name+first initial.
  • In the Entry Message box, type your Journal Entry or click Browse My Computer and select the document you saved as “WK6Journal+last name+first initial.(extension)” and click Open.
  • Click Post Entry.
Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 6 Journal Rubric

Submit Your Journal by Day 7

To submit your Journal:Week 6 Journal


Week in Review

This week, you reflected on existing themes or trends that might affect how the correctional system operates in the future.

Congratulations! After you have finished all of the assignments for this week, you have completed the course. Please submit your Course Evaluation by Day 7.

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