USA TODAY ranks Undergraduate Program in Top 10 List; Department of Criminology Also Ranks Top 5 Program in Faculty Article Publication

An important component of the quality of a graduate program is the publication productivity of its faculty.  However, previous reviews of graduate programs in Criminology and Criminal Justice (CCJ) have failed to consider the breadth of publications in journals outside of CCJ.  This has changed with the recent review conducted by Kleck and Mims (2016), who assessed the journal publication productivity of the faculty of all 40 CCJ PhD-granting programs in the United States using both CCJ journals and journals in sociology and the social sciences. 

The University of South Florida’s Department of Criminology, housed in the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences, ranked in the top 10 most productive Departments across all 40 U.S.-based CCJ PhD-granting programs across a number of measures including: a total ‘Credit/department’ score, a ‘Credit/faculty’ score standardized to represent per faculty member productivity, a total ‘Authorships/department’ score, and a ‘Authorships/faculty’ score standardized to represent per faculty member productivity.

In the total ‘Credit/department’ score, USF’s Department of Criminology ranked 8th of 40, up 3 positions from earlier 2005-2009 rankings. Only Sam Houston, Florida State University (FSU), Cincinnati, Arizona State, Texas-Dallas, Rutgers, and Michigan State ranked above USF in the total credit/department score. In the ‘Credit/faculty’ score, USF ranked 2nd out of 40, indicating that once faculty productivity was standardized as productivity per faculty member that USF ranked 2nd place overall.  The top 5 in this ranking category were Texas-Dallas, USF, FSU, Penn State, and the University of Florida (UF).

In the total number of authorships, USF ranked 5th out of 40; however, when looking at authorships standardized as per faculty member productivity, USF again ranked 2nd out of 40 (the top 5 were Texas-Dallas, USF, FSU, UF, and Penn State).

USF Department of Criminology Rank by Metric




Number faculty



Total credit













If we created a composite measure of these rankings[1], the USF Department of Criminology would rank in the top 5 of the 40 national doctoral-granting CCJ programs examined by Kleck and Mims.  Equally as impressive is that once faculty productivity was standardized as productivity per faculty member (e.g., removing the bias for departments with a greater number of faculty members to generate a larger amount of publications and authorships) that USF’s CCJ Department clearly secured the #2 ranking.

These numbers clearly show that the CCJ faculty in the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences at the University of South Florida are among the most productive of the CCJ faculty in the nation when it comes to publications in CCJ and related social science journals.

For more about the Department of Criminology, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences at the University of South Florida, see its website at

CITATION: Kleck, G., & Mims, B. (2016). Article productivity among the faculty of Criminology and Criminal Justice doctoral programs, 2010–2014.  Journal of Criminal Justice Education. Advance online publication. doi:10.1080/10511253.2016.1146008.

The Department of Criminology in the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences at the University of South Florida was established in 1972. In 1998, it became the second Department in the State of Florida to offer the Ph.D. degree in Criminology.   Established in 2008, the College of Behavioral & Community Sciences serves more than 2,600 students with six undergraduate, nine masters, and five doctoral programs housed in six academic departments/schools. The College also is the home of the Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute, one of the largest behavioral health research and training institutes in the country, as well as 17 specialized Research Centers and Institutes.  Serving nearly 48,000 students, the University of South Florida is one of the largest public universities in the nation, and among the top 50 universities, public or private, for federal research expenditures. It is one of only four Florida public universities classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in the top tier of research universities, a distinction attained by only 2.3 percent of all universities

[1] Overall Mean Ranking across these 4 metrics= 4.25 {(8+2+5+2)/4}



USA Today ranks Department of Criminology Undergraduate Program in Top 10 List



'The University of South Florida is a public university that was established in 1956. The undergraduate program in criminology at USF is designed to provide a solid foundation for students who plan to immediately join the workforce after obtaining their degrees or who wish to continue on to graduate studies.

The strong curriculum offered by the Department of Criminology provides students with the opportunity to explore a variety of topics, including law enforcement, the judiciary and corrections. Criminology majors are encouraged to view each subject from multiple perspectives so as to better understand the mindsets of both the criminal justice professional and the offender as well as society as a whole.'

CLICK LINK FOR FULL ARTICLE:  The 10 best U.S. colleges for a major in criminology