April Beattie joined the UCCS School of Public Affairs in 2012. Ms. Beattie has a great combination of dedicated teaching, exciting research, and relevant experience to bring to SPA. She received her BA in Crime and Justice Studies from the University of Texas at Dallas in 2005, her MA in Criminal Justice from George Washington University in 2008, and is currently finishing her Ph.D. in Crime, Law, and Justice at Pennsylvania State University (expected completion in 2013). On a personal note, Ms. Beattie enjoys traveling with her Australian-born husband Brett, delicious ethnic foods from around the world, and gets homesick for Texas when she hears old country music (she's originally from Dallas).
Areas of Interest:
Juvenile Delinquency and Juvenile Justice, Institutions of Social Control, Fear and Perceived Risk of Crime, Crime on Campus, Child Welfare System
Ms. Beattie's teaching experience ranges from courses in CJ-specific research methods to graduate-level law & society and everything in between. She has four primary teaching objectives: 1) ensuring content mastery, 2) improving critical thinking and writing skills, 3) fostering intellectual curiosity and diversity, and 4) helping students understand the significant impact that criminology has on their own lives and the greater social world. Her favorite part of teaching is helping students engage with criminal justice material in innovative and interactive ways.
Ms. Beattie's approach to scholarly research is to emphasize the inherently interdisciplinary nature of criminology using her broad training and experience in fields as diverse as sociology, public policy, and social work. Her research interests include fundamental aspects of criminology, such as deviance, social control, juvenile delinquency, as well as public perceptions about crime. Ms. Beattie's research bridges the literature of multiple disciplines that serve juveniles to examine how institutions of social control, particularly the child welfare, education, and mental health systems may have long-term impacts on youth. Ms. Beattie is currently working on research projects that address crime in the campus-community context, looking at how colleges and the neighborhoods that surround the school may relate to campus crime predictors and student behaviors such as fear and self-protective behaviors.
Selected Published Articles
Criminal Justice Field Experience:
Ms. Beattie, prior to beginning graduate school, worked full-time with juvenile offenders as a Deputy Court Clerk in the Irving, Texas Teen Court. This voluntary alternative disposition program for misdemeanor defendants aged 10-high school employed a youth court model and offered restorative justice sentences as a way for teenagers to take responsibility for their crimes. She has also volunteered extensively with at-risk youth. Her community efforts focus on advocating for abused and neglected children through work with Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Dallas County and work with female delinquents enrolled in Short Term Adolescent Residential Treatment Program (START) a court-mandated cognitive-behavioral residential treatment program for the Dallas County Juvenile Department. Ms. Beattie thinks one of the best things about UCCS's BACJ/MCJ programs is the internship options--getting your foot in the door and the experience in the field is just as important as classroom learning for being a successful criminal justice professional.
Ms. Beattie is the advisor for the UCCS chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma, the national criminal justice honor society. For more information, feel free to email her or stop by her office hours anytime.