Criminal Justice Resource Guide

Criminal Justice is an extremely broad field that encompasses professions such as forensics, police, security, private investigators, lawyers, judges, psychology and even more. This is a general resource guide intended to provide students interested in the criminal justice field with the resources they need for success in their chosen profession. The resources listed here fill various roles from education and professional development, to advocacy.

Professional Associations

Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences exists to promote research in the field of criminal justice sciences. The Academy not only promotes, but also strives to disseminate research useful to professionals across a wide variety of criminal justice professions.

American Society of Criminology is, despite its name, an international organization of leading  scholars who have joined together in order to explore some of the more difficult facets of crime such as etiology, prevention, consequences and treatment of crime.

American Correctional Association is the primary worldwide resource for individuals who work in the field of corrections. The ACA is responsible for developing and implementing certification and accreditation standards, and offers many strong development programs to corrections professionals around the world.

American Probation and Parole Association membership consists primarily of U.S. and Canadian members. The goal of the organization is to facilitate communication, training, professional development and education. The APPA also takes on the role of advocate for its members.

American Academy of Forensic Sciences consists of over 6,200 members from a wide range of forensic science fields such as medical doctors, lawyers, toxicologists, physical anthropologists, digital evidence experts, engineers, physicists, educators and many more. AAFS provides professional development resources and opportunities to every type of member.

American Society for Industrial Security is a global organization with over 38,000 members consisting of private security practitioners specializing in the protection of various types of assets. ASIS brings people from multiple corporate roles together, creating a great diversity from which much can be learned.

Justice Research and Statistics Association is a national organization consisting of a varied membership dedicated to criminal justice policy oriented research and analysis. The membership includes Statistical Analysis Center directors, government practitioners, researchers, scholars, and other criminal justice organizations.

National Sheriffs’ Association represents thousands of sheriffs, deputies, and public safety professionals. This organization is devoted to serving the office of Sheriff by providing members with general law enforcement information services.

Southern Criminal Justice Association is a regional organization that is also an affiliate of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences. The SCJA is a professional organization devoted to supporting educators, researchers, students, and practitioners in their efforts to improve the criminal justice field.

National Criminal Justice Association is the primary lobbyist organization for criminal justice professionals from across the nation. The NCJA strives to make the voices of its members heard in the nation’s capital.

American Criminal Justice Association is an organization that seeks to enhance the effectiveness of its members through the pursuit of professional development and education. The organization promotes strong ethical values and provides members with a unified voice.

North Carolina Criminal Justice Association is included in this list as an example of the type of organization you can find in almost every state. Such organizations often address specific needs on a local level when the national organizations will often do nothing.


Police Quarterly is a peer reviewed scholarly journal that publishes theoretical essays, empirical research, comparative analyses, debates and book reviews having to do primarily with policing and the execution of police responsibilities.

International Criminal Justice Review is a peer reviewed quarterly journal devoted to exploring and presenting system wide criminal justice issues with a global perspective. The goal of the journal is to present findings that will have a significant impact on policy making.

American Journal of Criminal Justice is the official journal of the Southern Criminal Justice Association and is a peer reviewed research journal that covers the interplay between various criminal justice systems, innovative practices, and policy development and implementation.

Criminal Law and Philosophy approaches criminal justice issues from a philosophical perspective. The journal approaches a wide variety of issues within the criminal justice field and includes content derived from every major philosophical perspective.

Critical Criminology addresses criminal justice issues through an exploration of the field as it relates to social, economic, and political justice. The journal approaches the major issues with a spirit of cooperation and the belief that these problems can be solved through understanding a variety of perspectives.

The British Journal of Criminology is a journal with an international perspective, seeking to publish works from only the most highly qualified professionals worldwide. The journal is designed to serve as a valuable resource for professionals that are either directly or indirectly interested in the field of criminal justice, from sociologists to psychologists and social workers.

Criminal Justice and Behavior is a peer reviewed monthly journal that promotes scholarly evaluations of assessment, intervention, prevention, and treatment programs. The journal is aimed primarily at corrections professionals and is designed to aid them in developing quality programs for the rehabilitation of criminals.

Criminal Justice Ethics is published three times per year and is designed to take an ethical view of the criminal justice system. The journal seeks to appeal to a broader base than just criminal justice professionals such as attorneys, judges, and political philosophers. The journal tackles the big ethical issues faced by criminal justice professionals such as the use of deadly force, the imposition of punishment, various plea bargaining and interrogation methodologies, and more.

Criminal Justice Studies publishes research, both qualitative and quantitative, by academics in a wide variety of fields, the only restriction being that the work must relate in some way to the field of criminal justice.

Criminal Justice Matters is the quarterly journal of the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies. The goal of the journal is to provide a forum for the discussion of major issues within the criminal justice field. The journal seeks work that is concerned with honesty, quality, and justice.

Journal of Criminal Justice Education is the official publication of the Academy for Criminal Justice Sciences and is primarily concerned with enhancing the education of criminal justice professionals, both directly and indirectly.

Women and Criminal Justice is the only journal completely devoted to understanding the position of women within the criminal justice system through scholarly research. The journal covers everything from female professionals in the criminal justice field, to the perception of women as victims or perpetrators of crimes.

Criminal Justice Policy Review is a peer reviewed journal that takes a multidisciplinary approach when dealing with major criminal justice issues in order to create a perspective informed by professionals and scholars from across a wide array of criminal justice related fields for the purpose of aiding in the development of better policy.

Criminology is a journal devoted to the study of crime and deviant behavior from the perspectives of psychology, sociology, design, systems analysis, and decision theory. The journal explores these topics through empirical research and scientific methodology.

Journal of Criminal Justice is an international journal that seeks to disseminate much of the highly relevant new information being discovered every day through research in the criminal justice field.

International Journal of Law, Crime, and Justice is a high quality refereed journal featuring research and analysis from top practitioners and scholars in the field.

Criminal Justice Magazine is a publication of the American Bar Association geared toward helping criminal justice professionals understand the intricacies of systemic interplay, policy and practice.

Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice features issues themed after specific topics and guest editors with expertise in the topic’s field. The goal is to present new topics for discussion and give each one thorough treatment.


National Institute of Justice Conference gathers criminal justice scholars, practitioners, and policy makers for a period of discussion on major issues in the criminal justice field. The conference emphasizes collaboration and focuses primarily on the benefits of cooperation between researchers and practitioners.

American Criminal Justice Association is the primary academic honors in criminal justice organization and holds a national conference every year in which research from top academics in the field is presented in addition to professional development events and competitive events like crime scene evaluation competitions.

SCJA Conference is the annual conference of the Southern Criminal Justice Association. The conference focuses on regional issues and also provides professionals with networking opportunities designed to enhance their ability to accomplish the unified goal of improving criminal justice across the board.

National Criminal Justice Training Center holds a yearly multi-jurisdictional conference that is focused on bringing together professionals from across the profession, from local police to federal authorities and corrections professionals.

Edge Hill, the Prison and the Public Conference is a one day conference held by Edge Hill University in the UK that studies the impact of prisons on the public through the study of the influence of prison life on the incarcerated and the local communities surrounding those prisons.

International Conference on Transnational Organized Crime and Terrorism is a conference series held in a variety of locations through the world every year, focusing on transnational organized crime and terrorism and how both effect the region in which the conference is being held.

Gang College is a comprehensive conference focused on bringing together anybody affected by gang related crime. From the average person living in a gang plagued location, to law enforcement professionals. The conference is devoted to helping people understand gangs, how to keep themselves safe, and how anybody can help fight against gangs.

34th Canadian Congress on Criminal Justice is a national Canadian conference devoted to exploring various criminal justice issues faced within the country of Canada. From dealing with civil unrest, to the growing influence of gangs.

Regulatory Bodies

The Department of Justice is the primary regulating body for all things criminal justice related in the United States. In addition to the federal entity, each state also has a justice department tasked with enforcing state specific regulations and dealing with state specific issues.