What is Corrections?

Legal Definition
In criminal justice, particularly in North America, correction, corrections, and correctional, are umbrella terms describing a variety of functions typically carried out by government agencies, and involving the punishment, treatment, and supervision of persons who have been convicted of crimes. These functions commonly include imprisonment, parole and probation. A typical correctional institution is a prison. A correctional system, also known as a penal system, thus refers to a network of agencies that administer a jurisdiction's prisons and community-based programs like parole and probation boards;. This system is part of the larger criminal justice system, which additionally includes police, prosecution and courts. Jurisdictions throughout Canada and the US have ministries or departments, respectively, of corrections, correctional services, or similarly-named agencies.

"Corrections" is also the name of a field of academic study concerned with the theories, policies, and programs pertaining to the practice of corrections. Its object of study includes personnel training and management as well as the experiences of those on the other side of the fence — the unwilling subjects of the correctional process. Stohr and colleagues (2008) write that "Earlier scholars were more honest, calling what we now call corrections by the name penology, which means the study of punishment for crime."
-- Wikipedia
Legal Definition
Correctional institutions are the places where convicted criminals serve out their sentences, including prisons, halfway houses and supervised release programs. They are generally of statutory creation and are governed by boards of charities and corrections, or similar boards that are part of a branch of municipal or state government. State and local legislatures that control corrections law are limited only by the Constitution.

Federal penal and correctional institutions, except for naval and military institutions, are controlled by the Attorney General. The Bureau of Prisons is under the Attorney General, and manages and regulates all aspects of federal penal and correctional facilities.
Legal Definition
Punishment. Chastisement by one having authority of a person who has committed some offence, for the purpose of bringing him to legal subjection.

2. It is chiefly exercised in a parental manner, by parents, or those who are placed in loco parentis. A parent may therefore justify the correction of the child either corporally or by confinement; and a schoolmaster, under whose care and instruction a parent has placed his child, may equally justify similar correction; but the correction in both, cases must be moderate, and in proper manner. Com. Dig. Pleader, 3 M. 19; Hawk. c. 60, s. 23, and c. 62, s. 2 c. 29, s. 5.

3. The master of an apprentice, for disobedience, may correct him moderately 1 Barn. & Cres. 469 Cro. Car. 179 2 Show. 289; 10 Mart. Lo. It. 38; but he cannot delegate the authority to another. 9 Co. 96.

4. A master has no riglit to correct his servants who are not apprentices.

5. Soldiers are liable to moderate correction from their superiors. For the sake of maintaining their discipline on board of the navy, the captain of a vessel, either belonging to the United States, or to private individuals, may inflict moderate correction on a sailor for disobedience or disorderly conduct. Abbott on Shipp. 160; 1 Ch . Pr. 73; 14 John. R. 119; 15 )lass. 365; 1 Bay, 3; Bee, 161; 1 Pet. Adm. Dec. 168; Molloy, 209; 1 Ware's R. 83. Such has been the general rule. But by a proviso to an act of congress, approved the 28th of September, l850, flogging in the navy and on board vessels of commerce was abolished.

6. Any excess of correction by the parent, master, officer, or captain, may render the party guilty of an assault and battery, and liable to all its consequences. In some prisons, the keepers have the right to correct the prisoners.
-- Bouviers Law Dictionary
Legal Definition
Discipline; chastisement administered by a master or other person in authority to one who has committed an offence, for the purpose of curing his faults or bringing him into proper subjection. See Correction, house of.
-- Black's Law Dictionary