Melder named head of CJHSS department at NSU


Dr. Mark O. Melder has been named head of the Department of Criminal Justice, History and Social Sciences at Northwestern State University. The Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System has approved the appointment.

A graduate of Northwestern State in with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Melder earned a Master of Arts and Doctorate in Sociology at Louisiana State University. Melder has been a member of Northwestern State’s faculty from 2007-10 and since 2014. He was coordinator of the master’s program in homeland security since June 2017 and acting department head since April. Melder has also been on the faculty of LSU and Louisiana Tech.

“I am honored to have been selected by my departmental colleagues and the university and system to lead the Department of Criminal Justice, and Social Sciences,” said Melder. “We offer a number of diverse degrees and serve over 500 majors in our 5 undergraduate programs and our masters program, and I look forward a bright future with our department and our university.”

Melder’s research interests are domestic and international militia groups and intimate partner homicide. His master’s thesis examined the motivations of militia members to join and remain active in a militia group and led to an article published in the Journal of Deviant Behavior “The Moral Careers of Militia Group Participants: A Case Study (2014).”

Melder’s doctoral dissertation, “The Anomaly of Racial Variance in Female Perpetrated Spousal Killing,” examined the phenomenon of intimate partner homicide, specifically women who kill, attempting to explain the racial differences in domestic homicide rates.

He is working on research in post-traditional students learning styles and continuing to research domestic and international terrorism.

The Department of Criminal Justice, History, and Social Sciences offers bachelor’s programs in resource management, criminal justice, history and unified public safety administration, a master’s in homeland security and a Pre-Law and Paralegal Studies Certificate of Completion Program and a Public Policy and Administration Program Certification. A post-master’s Global Security and Intelligence Certification is available along with an Adult Learning and Development concentration in Homeland Security offered in conjunction with the Gallaspy College of Education and Human Development.

For more information on the Department of Criminal Justice, History and Social Sciences, go to

Mark Melder