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Lloyd Sealy Library
John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice

Reference Materials: Encyclopedias, Handbooks, etc.

Reference materials are a good way to begin your research:






  • Brainstorm for Topic Ideas
  • Topic Overview
  • Topic Formation (how to think about your topic)
  • Topic Breakdown (relevant issues)
  • Vocabulary/Terms (use when searching for additional sources) 
  • Bibliography (list of additional relevant books and/or articles)

Online Reference Sources

Books with Computer Mouse attached

Our Library has access to a wide variety of criminal justice and social science encyclopedias and reference sources which provide a broad overview of your topic.

Enter your key words (s) or phrase(s) in the search box OR browse the List of Entries or Subject Index of a particular encyclopedia to find information on your topic.  For example:

women offenders

hate crimes

workplace violence


General Encyclopedias and Reference Sources:

Gale eBooks (formerly Gale Virtual Reference Library)

International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences

Oxford Reference Online

Sage Knowledge Collection

Very Short Introductions


Criminal Justice Encyclopedias and Reference Sources:

21st century criminology: A reference handbook, 2009

Annual Review of Criminology

Crime, prisons, and jails, 2015

Encyclopedia of crime and punishment  (Vols. 1-4), 2002

Encyclopedia of criminal justice ethics. 2014

Encyclopedia of criminology and criminal justice, 2014

Encyclopedia of gangs, 2008

Encyclopedia of juvenile justice, 2003

Encyclopedia of law enforcement (Vols. 1-3), 2004

Encyclopedia of prisons & correctional facilities, (Vols. 1-2), 2005

Encyclopedia of race and crime, 2009

Encyclopedia of terrorism, 2011

Encyclopedia of white-collar & corporate crime, (Vols. 1-2), 2005

Corrections, 2011

Oxford Bibliographies--Criminology

Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice   

West's encyclopedia of American law, 2nd edition, (Vols. 1-13), 2004

World encyclopedia of police forces and correctional systems, 2nd edition, 2006

Print Encyclopedias and Handbooks

These subject specific print encyclopedias are available in the Reference section of the Lloyd Sealy Library (on the 2nd Floor of the Library either in the reference stacks or behind the Reference Desk):

Albanese, J.S. (Ed.). (2014).  The encyclopedia of criminology and criminal justice. Wiley. 

Reference HV 6017 .E5297 2014 Vols. 1-5

Bosworth, M. (Ed.). (2005). Encyclopedia of prisons & correctional facilities. Sage Publications. 

Reference HV 9471 .E43 2005 Vols. 1-2

Brotherton, D., & Kontos, L. (2008). Encyclopedia of gangs. Greenwood Press. 

Reference HV 6349 .U5 E53 2008

Bryant, C.D. (Ed.). (2001). Encyclopedia of criminology and deviant behavior. Brunner-Routledge. 

Reference HV 6017 .E53 2001 Vols. 1-4

Cullen, F.T. & Wilcox, P. (Eds.).  (2010). Encyclopedia of criminological theory. Sage Publications. 

Reference HV 6017 .E527 2010 Vols. 1-2

Das, D.K., & Palmiotto, M. (Eds.). (2006). World police encyclopedia. Routledge. 

Reference Desk HV7901 .W64 2006 Vols. 1-2

Dressler J. (Ed.). (2002). Encyclopedia of crime & justice (2nd ed.). Macmillan Reference. 

Reference HV 6017 .E52 2002 Vols. 1-4

Gerstenfeld, P.B. (Ed.). (2008). Crime & punishment in the United States. Salem Press. 

Reference HV 6779 .C74 2008 Vols. 1-3

Greene, H.T. & Gabbidon, S.L. (Eds.). (2009). Encyclopedia of race and crime. Sage Publications. 

Reference HV 6789 .E43 2009 Vols. 1-2

Levinson, D. (Ed.). (2002). Encyclopedia of crime and punishment. Sage Publications. 

Reference HV 6017 .E524 2002 Vols. 1-4

Maguire, M., Morgan, R., & Reiner, R. (2012). The Oxford handbook of criminology. Oxford University Press. 

Reference HV6025 .O87 2012

Newman, G.R. (Ed.). (2010). Crime and punishment around the world. ABC-CLIO. 

Reference and Reference Desk HV 6025 .C7115 2010 Vols. 1-4

Sullivan. L. (Ed.). (2005). Encyclopedia of law enforcement. Sage Publications. 

Reference HV 7921 .E53 2005 Vols. 1-3

Wright, R.A. & Miller, J.M. (Eds.). (2005). Encyclopedia of criminology. Routledge. 

Reference HV 6017 .E5295 Vols. 1-3