Preparing For the Essay Competition - Law and Criminal Justice Topics

The most important decision you will make for the essay competition will be choosing the right topic. There a few key elements to consider before choosing your topic.

What do you already know about this topic?

If you are someone who is invigorated by the unknown, than choosing a topic which you have never even heard of may be fuel to you in getting your essay completed. For most students, though, choosing something relatively familiar will provide you with a certain amount of confidence before you even begin your research. This will be important later as you seek to become an expert on your topic.

What kind of time do you have?

You may have a heavy course load this semester. If you do, choose your topic wisely. Do not select a topic that is going to require a substantial amount of time during the research process unless you know that you have the time required to still end up with an excellent product.

Do you choose something common or rare?

Again, for those who love a challenge, picking a topic that is rarely (if never) discussed could give you a competitive edge in the competition. You must consider, however, that such topics may have limited research sources available, and such candidates may have to spend a considerable amount of extra time tracking down suitable sources.

Be creative!

Even if an obscure topic is not your thing, you still have the ability to bring new perspective to an old topic. Try to be creative in how you apply your research, and think of ways that you can personally connect to your topic or how it is relevant in today’s world. Even though this is not an opinion’s piece, your passion for your topic will still shine through - even in academic writing - and it is important to select something that you have a strong desire to learn more about.

Possible Topics

The following list includes topics from the law and criminal justice that one could choose to explore for the competition. Please note that you are not limited to these choices, and that creativity and self-driven research will definitely provide you with a powerful edge against your competitors.

  • Crime Statistics and Research
  • Criminal Investigations
  • Criminal Justice Information Services
  • Justice and Prevention
  • Law Enforcement
  • Parole
  • Prisons
  • Municipal Police Training
  • Child Pornography and the Law
  • Women and Justice
  • Understanding Violence and Victimization
  • Digital Crime
  • Race, Crime, Delinquency
  • Internet Crimes
  • Mental Health Issues Across the Criminal Justice System
  • Examining Homicide
  • Police Officer Stress: Issues and Solutions
  • Controversies in Policing
  • Sex Crimes
  • Managing Cybercrime
  • Terrorism: Research and Realities
  • Death Chambers: Exploring Execution
  • Criminal Evidence
  • Court Reform
  • Capital Punishment
  • Domestic Spying and Intelligence
  • Gay and Lesbian Violence
  • Health Care Fraud
  • Gun Control
  • Immigration
  • Race and Gender in Prisons
  • Racial Profiling
  • School Shootings
  • Sex Trafficking
  • Social Media and Criminal Justice
  • Tribal Policing
  • Youths Tried as Adults
  • International Sexual Slavery
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder among Veterans
  • Interviewing a Suspect
  • Juvenile Justice System
  • Border Patrol
  • The Differences Between Probation, Conditional Discharge, and Parole
  • The Role of Privacy in the Post- 9/11 World in the U.S.
  • Juveniles Raised Outside of the Traditional 2 Parent Household

Remember that creativity in your topic choice will put you ahead of the pack. You may choose to start with one of the above mentioned topics, and narrow down or do a sub-topic that it relates to. Consider examining a current issue that one of these topics is affected by and provide information about how the history of the topic affects the current legal issues, and project how the overarching topic may be influenced or altered in the future.