Department of Political Science and Criminal Justice

Published Research

       Joseph Loftus, M.A., a criminal justice graduate alumnus and Amarillo Police Lieutenant, and Keith Price, Ph.D., Professor, recently had a research article, "Police Attitudes and Professionalism" published in the Administrative Issues Journal: Education, Practice, and Research.

     Gordon Eatley, a criminal justice graduate student and Amarillo Police Sergeant, Harry H. Hueston, Ph.D., Professor, and Keith Price, Ph.D., Professor, had a research article, "A Meta-Analysis of the CSI Effect: The Impact of Popular Media on a Juror’s Perception of Forensic Evidence," accepted for publication in Politics, Bureaucracy, and Justice journal.

     Richard Webb, M.A., a criminal justice graduate alumnus, was hired as a criminal justice instructor at West Texas A&M University.

   Keith Price, Ph.D., Professor, has begun work on a book to be entitled A Guide to Texas Prisons. Professor Price spent thirty-years working in the Texas prison system before coming to West Texas A&M University.


West Texas Capital Jury Project.  Department members are continuing their research of capital jury decision making. Dr. Keith Price, Dr. Gary Byrd, Prof. Susan Coleman, and Dr. Tim Atchison are working together to examine further the phenomenon of death qualification. The researchers utilize twenty mock capital juries made up of WTAMU students. The death-qualified juries will be compared with the non-death-qualified juries to examine differences or possible sources of pro-prosecutor bias. In October, 2014, Administrative Issues Journal published "Examination of Capital Murder Jurors’ Deliberations: Methods and Issues." Researchers involved in this project included the principals and a graduate student, Tomi Dillon.

Emergency Response Plan.  Dr. Harry Hueston's graduate class recently took on the challenge of emergency planning. The class reviewed WTAMU's existing emergency plans. The class then contacted universities that had experienced disaster recoveries from: blizzards, floods, train wrecks, tornadoes, wildfires, and chemical explosions. The class applied this information to the WTAMU plan. The revision was presented to the WTAMU President's Cabinet by the class. As a result of the class project the WTAMU Emergency Plan has been revised to include various recoveries. 

Legal Reading.  Dr. James Calvi, professor of political science, and Susan Coleman, instructor of political science, are co-authors of American Law and Legal Systems, seventh edition. The book offers readers a greater understanding of the American legal system.

Book Collaboration.  Dr. Dave Rausch, Associate Professor of Political Science, and Dr. Reed Welch, Associate Professor of Political Science, have teamed up with three other authors to write Government in America: People, Politics and Policy. The 13th edition textbook focuses on the nature of democracy and the scope of government. Its 27 chapters cover a variety of topics. Rausch and Welch wrote part 5 of the book, which covers government in Texas.