Criminal Justice Major

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The criminal justice program is for students interested in studying the causes, prevention and control of crime, as well as the theories and policies relative to the structure and operation of various law enforcement (policing), correctional and judicial organizations. The criminal justice major prepares students for criminal justice careers in professional justice agencies. Careers in criminal justice can be categorized by a variety of organizations (e.g. state and local police; correctional organizations for adult and juveniles; legal and judicial organizations; federal law enforcement; private security organizations, etc.).

Criminal justice is both a professional and a liberal arts program. The major curriculum consists of three components: 1) criminal justice proficiency courses (required); 2) criminal justice electives, which can be grouped into specialty areas or not, at the student’s option; 3) non-criminal justice courses (co-requisites), many in related liberal arts disciplines, which can be taken during the first two years of college. 

Program Requirements

Students in the Criminal Justice major pursue a Bachelor of Science degree, and must complete the corresponding degree's requirements.

I. General Education Requirements (32 credits)

II. Major Program Requirements (36 credits)

1. Criminal Justice Core Proficiencies (required) … Students must take all 6 courses (18 credits)

  • CRJ 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice**
  • CRJ 203 The Police Process
  • CRJ 205 Criminal Courts and Law (or PLS 320 Law and Legal Process)
  • CRJ 207 The Corrections Process
  • CRJ 471 Research Methods***
  • CRJ 494 Criminology

2. Criminal Justice Electives* … Students must select 6 courses from the following electives (18 credits)

  • CRJ 304 Investigations
  • CRJ 305 Adjudication Process
  • CRJ 311 Criminal Law
  • CRJ 313 Constitutional Criminal procedure
  • CRJ 321 Crime Patterns
  • CRJ 323 White Collar Crime
  • CRJ 331 Community Based Corrections
  • CRJ 343 Juvenile Justice Process
  • CRJ 371 Introduction to Forensic Science
  • CRJ 375 Forensic Law
  • CRJ 422 Cyber Crime and Digital Forensics
  • CRJ 431 Crime Prevention and Control
  • CRJ 434 Security Administration
  • CRJ 436 Computer Security
  • CRJ 451 International Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 465 Terrorism
  • CRJ 472 Crime and Media
  • CRJ 473 Death Penalty
  • CRJ 474 GIS (Geographic Information System) & Crime Mapping
  • CRJ 476 Race & Crime
  • CRJ 477 Family Violence
  • CRJ 479 Victimology
  • CRJ 481 Women and Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 485 Issues in Juvenile Justice
  • CRJ 489 Problems in Policing
  • CRJ 490 Internship in Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 491 Selected Topics in Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 492 Ethics in Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 493 Seminar in Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 499 Independent Study in Criminal Justice

* Criminal Justice majors must earn a grade of C or better in all major courses to be counted into the major credits
** Successful completion of CRJ 101 is required of all CRJ majors or CRJ minors prior to enrolling in any other CRJ course
*** Successful completion of an approved Statistics course is required prior to enrolling in CRJ 471

III. Co-requisite Courses (21 Credits)

  • SOC100 Introduction to Sociology^
  • PLS113 Introduction to American Politics
  • PSH110 General Psychology^
  • One Minorities Course … variety of interdisciplinary offerings.
  • One Statistics Course … variety of interdisciplinary offerings.
  • Two upper-division (300/400 level) courses in sociology, psychology or political science.

Note: ^ Denotes courses that meet both major and general education requirements

IV. Electives (31 credits)

Total Credits (120 credits)

Additional Degree Requirements

Student Learning Outcomes

SLO #1: Understand how crime is defined and measured.
SLO #2: Develop a sound understanding of the causes of crime and society's response to crime.
SLO #3: Be able to apply critical thinking when evaluating issues in criminology and criminal justice.
SLO #4: Develop skills in expressing themselves clearly and coherently in oral and written language.
SLO #5: Understand some of the important ethical and cultural competencies required by those who wish to work in the criminal justice area.