Learning Reflections

M7: Learning Reflection

Learning reflections give you the opportunity to think about what you have read and written in this module, linking it to your own experience and prior learning. This exercise will help ensure that you are able to recall the information presented in this module at a later date and use it when completing assessments. 

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For your learning reflections, please address the following questions: “What did you learn in this module and how would you use it? What do you wish I would have asked you this week?”

In addressing this question, please write from between 5-10 sentences. You do not have to cite any outside sources or use APA format. This is your opportunity to think through what the module has meant to you.

Please see the Excelsior Discussions Posting Guide for instructions on posting to this forum. You do not have to post first to see the work posted by your classmates. Responses are not required in this Discussion, although you are welcome to do so.  All reflections combined are worth 10% of your final grade.



Reading Material:


Module 7: Module Notes: Prisons and Jails

Please listen to the audio lecture [Audio file][03 Min 34 Sec] for Module 7.
(Audio reading of Module Notes text) https://excelsior.instructure.com/courses/26070/files/13105745/download?wrap=1

As you begin your studies of prisons and jails, you realize the important role public perception plays in public policies and how the era of rehabilitation has now moved to an era of “just desserts.” The effects of the just desserts model are evident in the many critical issues facing both prisons and jails today and in the future.

A very important point to gain from this module is that, although the official crime rate (1991-2009) has dropped by 44%, the imprisonment rate for this same time period has increased by 70%. Thus, crime control proponents argue that crime rate decreases are attributable, in part, to taking the bad apples, who repeatedly commit most of the crimes, off the streets. Further, as you study Chapter 11, you see that there are many other historical factors that contribute to the high imprisonment rate. Added to these factors are the disturbingly similar common denominators shared by many of today’s inmates, such as being poorly educated and often illiterate, drug addiction and abuse, few if any marketable job skills and poor work histories, and many possessing mental illness issues. As you ponder these factors, also consider the recurring issue of the cost of incarcerating million in prisons, which in 2014 cost approximately 83 billion dollars.

Of equal importance, also consider the issues of disproportionality within our prisons regarding race, gender, and type of offense. You have learned the vagaries of sentencing practices in state and federal courts, the effects of mandatory sentencing, and “three strikes and you’re out” policies. Now, you evaluate the final results, most notably overcrowding and costly incarceration.

In response to these issues, you evaluate the strategies of collective and selective incapacitation. Additionally, you discover the importance of appropriate inmate classification, increased purposes and uses of jail populations, the gender specific issues arising from the increased number of females being held in jails, the rise of direct-supervision jails, regionalization, and the future of private prisons.


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