Welcome to CriminalJusticeDegree.com. This site was created to help students find and research criminal justice degree programs. Our blog, authored by Kathyrn Loving, a former peace officer, provides updates and insights related to the criminal justice field. Through extensive research, we have compiled a list of accredited programs designed to enhance job skills and improve career opportunities. To learn more about your options, you can click on each section below for a detailed overview.

Degrees in Criminal Justice

Criminal justice degrees are very versatile and can open new career opportunities in a variety of related fields. It is important to note that curriculum can vary greatly from school to school. It is essential, therefore, to find out as much as possible about each program before applying. Considerations when choosing a degree include:

  • Degree program length and options (online or campus)
  • Subject focus of the program such as forensics, criminal justice, homeland security, etc.
  • Job opportunities and career outlook after graduation

For your convenience, accredited schools offering criminal justice degres are listed below:

Liberty University
Liberty University

  • SACS
Ashford University
Ashford University

  • WASC
Purdue University
Purdue University

  • HLC
  • NCA
South University
South University

  • SACS

Click to see more colleges offering Criminal Justice degrees

Career Options with a Degree in Criminal Justice

For graduates with a degree in criminal justice or a related field, exciting job opportunities await. Graduates often pursue careers in corrections, court systems, law enforcement, homeland security, and a variety of other fields. Others choose to further their education by attending law school or continue their training to work for the FBI, CIA, or the Secret Service. Below you’ll find the most popular career paths for graduates in this field:

Career Field: Overview: Job Options:
Criminal Justice A field of social science which studies the theory, laws, and policies in the criminal justice system and the role of law enforcement agencies.
  • F.B.I. Agent
  • Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Special Agent
  • Borders Protection Agent
  • U.S. Marshall
  • Postal Inspector
Corrections A field of academic study concerned with the theories, policies, and programs pertaining to the practice of corrections.
  • Correctional Counselor
  • Parole Officer
  • Correctional Treatment Specialist
  • Juvenile Correctional Case Manager
  • Federal Correctional Administrator
Criminal Investigations An area of criminology that refers to the process of collecting evidence about a crime in order to determine if a crime has been committed.
  • Police Detective
  • Private Investigator
  • Crime Laboratory Analyst
  • Forensic Criminologist
  • Evidence Collector
Law Enforcement The term that describes the individuals and agencies responsible for enforcing laws and maintaining public order and public safety.
  • Police Officer
  • Sheriff
  • Coast Guard
  • Federal Air Marshal
  • Fraud Investigator
Paralegal Studies A program of study designed to prepare students for careers assisting attorneys in the delivery of legal services.
  • Paralegal
  • Legal Assistant
  • Litigation Support Professional
  • Legal Secretary
  • Court Reporter
Security/Loss Prevention A career field commonly used by retail companies in reducing losses from fraud, theft, or data compromise but also include security of persons and property.
  • Loss Prevention Specialist
  • Security Officer
  • Casino Surveillance
  • Asset Protection Specialist
  • Cyber Security Professional

If you’re interested in learning where the highest employment levels in the US for police and sheriff’s patrol offers, check out the map below from The Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Crim Just Map

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Online Learning: An Overview

Online programs are an accessible, flexible resource that can help you meet goals such as gaining new skills, obtaining a degree, or advancing your career. They offer an education similar to that you’d receive as an on-campus student; however, there are differences between online and on-campus degree programs that should be mentioned. Below you’ll find a helpful chart that compares the two options:

Online Programs: Campus Programs:
Accreditation Many online programs are accredited by the same national and regional accreditors that recognize brick-and-mortar schools with the addition of speciality accreditors of distance education institutions. Campus programs are typically accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and regional accreditors such as Middle States Commission on Higher Education or North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Scheduling Classes Online programs typically you to schedule your classes at times that best suit your schedule and learning style. Campus programs typically have set times for classes that follow a semester or trimester system.
Instructional Delivery Online classes are typically conducted entirely via the Internet and requires attendance at few, if any, campus class meetings. Most campus-based programs require on-site attendance for instruction, exams, and student-related activities.
Assignments and Exams Assignments and exams can usually be completed at any time on the assigned due date via the university’s instructional web site. Assignments and exams are typically completed or submitted at the classes scheduled time in person.
Peer Interaction Assignments and lectures are completed independently, but discussions are held among fellow classmates in a forum-like environment. Some classes assign team projects; students can organize themselves into study groups for exams and lectures.
Textbooks and Required Materials A computer and internet connection is a must. Most classes do not require special software outside of a word processor and slideshow viewer. Textbooks are often, but not always, required. Textbooks are typically required for courses; other materials are often available at a campus library or learning center.

Online programs are becoming increasingly more popular among today’s students. According to the National Center for Education Statistics there were over 5.5 million students in the United States that enrolled in distance learning programs in 2013 alone.

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Affording an Education in Criminal Justice

If the cost of attending college is greater than what you can afford, there are resources available to help offset the cost. You can apply for financial aid in the form of grants, student loans, work study, and scholarships.

It’s important to know the difference between all the kinds of available aid and how to apply for it. Below you’ll find more information about each form and where to locate credible resources on the web:

Type of Aid: Overview: Additional Resources:
Grants A form of financial aid based on need or other criteria, such as academic merit athletic abilities, and do not have to be repaid.
Scholarships A form of financial aid usually given to students based on their outstanding academic achievement and do not have to be repaid.
Work Study (for campus-based programs) A form of financial aid based on need that provides an opportunity to earn money with a part–time job on campus to help pay for your living costs at college.
Federal Student Loans A form of financial aid funded by the federal government that must be repaid at a set interest rate with several repayment plans options.
Private Loans A form of non-federal aid made by a lender such as a bank, credit union, state agency, or a school that must be repaid at variable interest rates, some greater than 18%.

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