Dr. Katie Zafft joined the department of Criminology and Criminal Justice as a professional track faculty member in the Fall of 2016. She teaches courses on criminological theory, juvenile delinquency, crime prevention, violence, courts, and sentencing. Previous to joining the department she was a Senior Associate for Research with The Pew Charitable Trusts' public safety performance project where she worked on evaluating state criminal justice policy reforms to inform the national conversation about sentencing and corrections. Her professional interests include the intersection of criminal justice and public policy, drug policy specific to the heroin and opioid epidemic, crime and delinquency prevention, and innovations in evaluation research methodology. She received her PhD in criminology and criminal justice from the University of Maryland in 2014, holds a master's degree in criminology from the University of Minnesota Duluth, and earned her bachelors degree in Psychology from St. Catherine's University in St. Paul, Minnesota.
My teaching experience has involved teaching a wide variety of students, and I feel this has resulted in a flexible approach that allows me to reach people at different skill levels and learning abilities. At the same time, I recognize the need to be firm and establish clear policies about classroom conduct in order to maintain a focused learning environment. I encourage students to treat class as they would a job, in that achieving a good grade depends in part upon the strength of their work ethic. I design my classes so that the time and effort put into studying and engaging the materials is reflective in the grade received. My courses involve multi-modal and holistic instruction with clear grading standards designed to promote critical thinking.