Criminology and Criminal Justice


Welcome to the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice

The Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice provides students an opportunity to gain knowledge and think critically about crime, criminals, criminal justice and the law. Our faculty members have diverse backgrounds and interests. Our Criminology and Criminal Justice faculty are dedicated teachers and are actively involved in exciting research and service to the community.


The mission of the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice is to challenge and inspire students to be lifelong learners and to critically examine crime and justice issues. The department engages in quality teaching to provide students with theoretical, practical, and ethical foundations in the study of crime and justice, contributes to the body of knowledge in crime and justice through quality research, and participates in professional, academic, and community partnerships and service. Our programs prepare and enhance the development of effective criminal justice professionals with a commitment to understand and embrace the importance of diversity in society.

Students in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice enjoy small class sizes and high–quality faculty dedicated to providing an outstanding education. Opportunities to conduct research, complete internships, and participate in student organizations abound in our department.

Annually the department provides undergraduate and graduate academic and needs–based scholarships. For more detailed information, please check out the scholarship webpage and feel free to contact any of our faculty members or the department advisor.

George Dekle: Lead Prosecutor in Ted Bundy Case

The University of West Florida Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice hosted Professor George R. (Bob) Dekle Sr., as he presented a lecture on the investigation, prosecution and execution of Ted Bundy. Professor Dekle served as the lead prosecutor assigned to the Bundy case arising from the kidnapping of an 8th grade student at Lake City Junior High School in February 1978.  Dekle also was integrally involved in the post-conviction defense of the judgment and death warrant.  A member of the Florida Bar for 43 years, Professor Dekle serves as the Director of the Criminal Prosecution Clinic at the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law. Professor Dekle has authored a number of books and professional publications including, The Last Murder.

George Dekle Lecture