Masters in Criminal Justice
If you want a career in the public sector and increase your chances of beingput in a position of leadership, obtaining a Masters in CriminalJustice may be perfect for you. Your program will probably include aninternship with a member of the justice system to complete your degree. Ittakes a variety of skills to be a leader in the complex, politicized workingenvironment of the criminal justice industry. You will need to take moderndecision-making classes, sociology, business, psychology and statistics to helpyou build these skills. Particular courses of study will include criminology,labor relations, research methods, the probation and patrol system, deviantbehavior and crime prevention.
You will have the option of taking anywhere from two to five years tocomplete the program you choose to become involved with. If you want to earnyour degree at a lower expense and a far greater level of convenience, youshould look into online Criminal Justice Master's Programs.While some coursework may need to be completed in a real life setting, much ofyour credits can come from the convenient online classroom. This is perfect forstudents who are too busy during the day to schedule traditional classes.
Students who complete graduate degrees end up filling the positions ofadministrators and professors as well as on-the-job police force members. Othercareer options include becoming an ATF agent, private security member,criminologist, CIA or FBI agent, coast guard, court clerk, US Marshall, or aparalegal.
Additional Criminal Justice Grad Resources
University ofCincinnati has criminal justice program ranked in the top fivein the nation. There is also an online version of the Master in CriminalJustice available through UC that is completely accredited and an excellentoption for working professionals in criminal justice or law enforcement whoneed a master's degree in order to work towards a senior management position.(this could be an internal link)
Florida StateUniversity has the seventh ranked School of Criminology andCriminal Justice in the country. The FSU Masters in Criminal Justice isavailable on campus in Tallahassee, and as an online degree program. Theprogram is a thirty six credit hour requirement, of which fifteen credits arerequired core courses. The balance is allotted to electives, which can be drawnfrom an extensive list of criminal justice classes and in addition threeclasses chosen from other departments.
RutgersUniversity/Newark offers a thirty three credit hour Master ofCriminal Justice degree that consists of eighteen hours of core courses, twelvehours of electives, and a three credit field work project. Students who arealready working in the criminal justice field may substitute another class forthe field work. The program must be completed within a three year period.
Michigan StateUniversity has the oldest degree granting criminal justiceprogram in the nation, established in 1935. The graduate program began in 1956.The Master of Criminal Justice degree is available on the East Lansing campusor online. There are also Masters' degrees in Law Enforcement Intelligence& Analysis, and in Forensic Science.
Arizona StateUniversity has one of the top fifteen criminal justice programsin the country according to the US News & World Report annual survey ofAmerican universities. The Master of Criminal Justice degree can be completedin eighteen months of full time study, and is available as a part time programas well. This degree can be completed at the Tempe campus or online.
Criminal Justice Professional Associations
NationalCriminal Justice Association is a research and policy organization thattracks the development of federal criminal justice policy very closely and isactive in helping state and local jurisdictions in implementing fundedprograms. There are education and professional development programs formembers, who are professionals involved in criminal justice programadministration in various government jurisdictions.
Academy ofCriminal Justice Sciences is an international organization devoted toscholarly activities and research in the criminology and criminal justicefields. There are several sections in the organization focused on specificareas. These include Juvenile Justice, Corrections, Law & Public Policy,Minorities & Women, Security & Crime Protection, Victimology, andPolice.
International Association of Chiefs of Police has 20,000 membersin over 100 nations. The organization was founded in 1893 and since then hascontributed to advancements in law enforcement techniques and technology. TheIACP played key roles in the development of the Uniform Crime Records systemand in the FBI development of its Identification Division.
Federal LawEnforcement Officers Association was founded in 1977 to represent the25,000 - plus members of the sixty five agencies that do law enforcement workwithin the federal structure. Originally designed to provide organizationalsupport for individual officers, today the Association is active in legislativeadvocacy, providing testimony on proposed legislation and funding changes.
American Society of Criminology is an organization that isoriented to academic pursuits in the field, including research, education andprofessional development. The Society has developed into an internationalorganization with the exchange of professional knowledge flowing amongacademics, practitioners, and students in criminology around the globe.
Criminal Justice Accreditation and Credentials
U.S. Department of Education does notrecognize any organization for accreditation of criminal justice academicprograms. What criminal justice students should determine, however, is whetheror not the university itself is accredited by one of the six regionalcommissions that are recognized for overall accreditation of higher educationinstitutions.
American Corrections Association has a professional certificationprogram that includes educational programs and exams for these credentials:Certified Corrections Executive, Certified Corrections Manager, and CertifiedCorrections Supervisor for Adult, Juvenile, and Security Threat categories.
SouthernCriminal Justice Association is a regional organization of criminal justiceeducators, professionals, students, and researchers that has on onlinedirectory of members which includes an excellent roster of accredited programsin the area.
International Compliance Association offers courses andcertification in financial crime investigation and financial complianceinspection. The programs are for certification in the UK, Singapore, Russia,and International.
Justice Research & Statistics Association is an excellentresource for accredited research in the criminal justice field as well as apossible career opportunity for criminal justice graduates who are interestedin research work.