The Criminal Justice Department offers an online,36 credit master of science in criminal justice designed to appeal to pre- and mid-career students who desire advanced study in criminal justice. The program prepares students to become highly capable criminal justice agency administrators, planners and academicians. The program also helps prepare students planning to pursue doctoral degrees. The curriculum emphasizes classical and contemporary theories, concepts, and practices relevant to the needs of the practitioner and the academician. In addition to required core courses, the program requires students to select a concentration in either professional management or to create a custom concentration of study. The program culminates in the completion of a master’s thesis.
The department also offers an entirely online graduate certificate in criminal justice management. Certificate course work is targeted toward current and aspiring managers in criminal justice agencies. All 16 credits of the graduate certificate are required in the master of science in criminal justice degree, leaving only 20 additional credits and the thesis for the master’s degree.
Applicants to the certificate program will be admitted as non-degree students in the College of Graduate Studies.
Applicants to the master's program are required to comply with the regular admission requirements of the College of Graduate Studies. In addition, master's applicants must:
- Complete a separate application for admission to the master of science in criminal justice.
- Have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher, or 3.0 or higher from 12 or more semester hours of relevant graduate credit.
- Include two letters of recommendation.
- Write two, three page essays. (Details of what is needed in these letters and essays are included on the application for admission to the master of science in criminal justice form.)
- Possess an earned bachelor's degree in criminal justice, criminology, justice studies, law enforcement or a closely related field. Students with an earned bachelor's degree in other disciplines are encouraged to apply. The graduate program coordinator/department head will review applicants applying from other discipliines and may require additional courses prior to full admission.
It is preferred that applicants have a solid background in criminal justice, including relevant course work at the undergraduate level. Should an applicant not possess such background, the department's graduate admission committee may recommend additional courses to strengthen the applicant's preparedness.
Note: In consultation with the graduate coordinator/department head, all master's students must complete a plan of study on or before the completion of 12 earned credit hours.