Are you interested in becoming a police officer, or a private detective or a private investigator? Or perhaps working for the United States government in security? If you are interested in working in the field of law enforcement or a related area, then a criminal justice degree program may be the right one for you. Since CSI and similar television programs have become so popular, there has been an increase in interest in criminal justice online programs.
Criminal justice is the law enforcement system that deals with the apprehension, prosecution, defense, sentencing and incarceration of those suspected or charged with committing a crime. The criminal justice system consists of three main agencies: (1) law enforcement (police); (2) adjudication (courts); and (3) corrections (jails, prisons, probation and parole). So studying criminal justice programs can offer a range of jobs in any of these agencies, e.g., as a drug enforcement officer, police officer, sheriff, probation officer, substance abuse counselor, and even in forensic accounting.
Criminal justice can be studied online at all levels, certificate to PhD. This page describes these programs, and outlines the criminal justice careers options and prospects.
What do you study in criminal justice online programs?
Online criminal justice courses that you may be required to take in a criminal justice degree program might include: criminal justice systems; criminology; computer crime (cyber crime); corporate and white collar crime; correctional facilities; domestic violence; drug trade and trafficking; ethics; forensic psychology; jurisprudence and juvenile corrections; legal rights of offenders; mediation, dispute management, and negotiation training; police department organization; public and private safety; technology in criminal justice; terrorism and counter-terrorism.
What are the career prospects for graduates?
The demand for qualified and efficient personnel in the field of criminal justice is on the rise. Depending on the level of their experience, graduates of criminal justice programs will be eligible for a jobs in:
- state and local government agencies as local law enforcement officers, state troopers, SBI agents, arson specialists and fingerprinting specialists;
- military and defense agencies as military police officers and investigators;
- federal agencies like the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms), DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency), CIA, FBI, the Secret Service, Customs, and the Border Patrol;
- the corrections department as wardens, corrections, parole, and probation officers;
- criminology as criminologists, crime scene investigators, and forensic scientists;
- white-collar crime detection and prevention (including cyber crime);
- the private sector as detectives, investigators and security specialists;
- the legal profession as legal assistants and secretaries, paralegals, court administrators. Criminal justice degrees can also be good to lead into the law degree that is necessary to work as lawyers, judges, and magistrates;
- colleges and universities as lecturers and professors – a criminal justice online masters degree or even an online criminal justice PhD is necessary for a lecturing job in a university or college.
Criminal justice careers salaries vary widely according to the agency and job, e.g., from a probation officer with a median salary of $41,000, through a police patrol officer with a salary of $48,000, to an FBI agent with a median salary in excess of $70,000.
List of schools and programs
- Named a Best for Vets school by the Military Times in 2014.
- Has specialized in student-centered technology, business, criminal justice, health science, and culinary education for over 45 years.
- Makes it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in 2.5 years or an associate’s in 1.5 years by providing a year-round schedule.
- Offers externships and clinical experience that help students prepare for life after they graduate.
- Has 10 campuses across the mid-Atlantic, plus online degree programs.
- Criminal Justice - Bachelor's
- Homeland Security - Bachelor's
- Why Earn Your Degree from GCU?
- Options: Choose from a variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Business, Nursing, Psychology, Education & more!
- Convenience: Complete courses online, on campus, or a combination of both!
- Earlier Graduation: Our 4-credit courses allow you to complete your degree program in less time.
- Transfer Friendly: We will request your transcripts, evaluate your graduate coursework, and determine your anticipated graduation date within 24 hours.
- Quality: Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 and is regionally accredited. Learn more today!
- M.S. in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies
- M.S. in Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement
- Topped the list as Best Online Bachelor’s Program in Virginia by U.S. News & World Report in 2019.
- Regent is ranked among Top National Universities by U.S. News & World Report, 2019.
- Flexible online, on-campus and evening courses offered in 135 areas of study, including Business, Nursing, Psychology, & more.
- Regent is recognized among Top #10 Military Friendly Schools by Military Friendly®, 2019.
- 88% of Regent University students receive financial aid, with $24 million awarded in institutional scholarships & aid in 2017-18.
- Bachelor of Science in Professional Studies - Criminal Justice
- Bachelor of Arts in Government - Pre-Law
- Master of Public Administration in Law
- And more...
- Post University has trained thousands of successful professionals in Criminal Justice
- Find concentrations in Legal Studies, Correctional Counseling & more
- 100% online Criminal Justice B.S. degree
- Ranked in the Best Online Bachelors Programs for Veterans by US News & World Report
- Ranked in the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by the US News & World Report
- B.S. in Criminal Justice / Law Enforcement
- B.S. in Criminal Justice
- A.S. in Criminal Justice
- And more...
- Choose from bachelor’s degrees in homeland security and emergency management, law enforcement administration, or social and criminal justice.
- A Master of Science in Criminal Justice is also available.
- Explore the impact of crime, different approaches to combat crime, and strategies to respond to emergency situations.
- Degree programs are offered entirely online in a flexible format that fits into the busy lives of working adults.
- MS/Criminal Justice - Homeland Security
- MS/Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement and Corrections Administration
- MS Criminal Justice
- And more...
- Lancaster Bible College|Capital Seminary & Graduate School is a private Bible college composed of undergraduate, accelerated undergraduate and graduate learners.
- Lancaster Bible College|Capital Seminary & Graduate School's mission has remained constant since 1933:
- Lancaster Bible College|Capital Seminary & Graduate School offers 50+ majors, 8 academic departments and a variety of mission/ministry groups.
- Lancaster Bible College's programs offer flexible degree formats. Our programs allow you to continue working in your current field, and apply life experiences as credits in certain instances.
- Lancaster Bible College|Capital Seminary & Graduate School believes that God gave you a unique set of gifts. Now, He's giving you the opportunity to use them
- Bachelor of Arts - Criminal Justice
- Northcentral University was founded in 1996 to provide working professionals around the world with unprecedented access to richly engaging, professionally relevant, and academically-rigorous education from a U.S. university.
- As a regionally accredited, private, online and graduate-focused university, NCU offers doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in business, technology management, education, and psychology, as well as doctoral and master’s degrees in marriage and family therapy.
- Master of Science in Cybersecurity
- Criminal Justice - MBA
- Criminal Justice - D.B.A.
- And more...