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Criminal Justice Studies (BS) | Office | Website


Courses in criminal justice lead to a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice, which prepares one to work in a wide variety of careers, public and private, at various levels of responsibility. These careers include federal, state, and local policing; other regulatory agencies of various branches of government; various levels of private investigation and private security; and a variety of careers in corrections, including parole and probation as well as institutional corrections. Students planning on pursuing a law degree have often found criminal justice a relevant major.

Criminal Justice is an interdisciplinary area that draws much of its content from law, psychology, political science, and sociology. The goal of the criminal justice curriculum is to make students aware of the key issues, concepts, and theories involved in understanding the operation of the criminal justice system. With this knowledge, students are taught to analyze the practical issues and controversies of the field from a social justice perspective. Problem solving, the ability to make discriminating judgments, and the application of theory to practice are key skills that the program fosters.

Degree Requirements

Students are required to complete course requirements in three general areas: (a) University core curriculum-54 credits, (b) supportive courses and (c) major concentration.

University Core Curriculum
See University Core Curriculum for more information on the University Core Curriculum. Specifically, the student should follow the core for the College of Liberal Arts & Education.

Supportive Courses (9 cr.)
To insure that they have a good background in the key areas on which criminal justice is based, students will take at least three courses in the social sciences: Sociology, Psychology, and Political Science. (Note: All courses below are three credit courses.)

The only specific supportive course that is required is:
PYC 3420 Abnormal Psychology 3
The Introductory courses, namely Sociology 1000, Psychology 1000, and Political Science 1000 are recommended, though higher level social science courses may be substituted with the advisor's approval. Note that supportive courses may also meet University Core Curriculum requirements.

Criminal Justice Major: Required Courses

Required (36 credits)
CJS 1300 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
CJS 1310 Introduction to Corrections 3
CJS 2500* Police Administration 3
CJS 3950 Criminal Investigation 3
CJS 4100 Criminal Law 3
CJS 4150 Juvenile Justice 3
CJS 4200 Evidence and Criminal Procedure 3
CJS 4510 Criminology and Penology 3
CJS 4540 Sociology of Deviant Behavior 3
CJS 4920 Senior Seminar: Theory and Research in Criminal Justice 3
*A student may substitute CJS 4770 Introduction to Intelligence Analysis or CJS 4800 Theory of Law Enforcement for CJS 2500 with the permission of his/her advisor.

In addition to the above nine courses, the student must take two elective Criminal Justice courses (this may include courses with an SEC or HUS prefix, with advisor's approval).

Principal Criminal Justice Electives
SEC 4010 Security Systems and Crime Prevention 3
CJS 2500 Introduction to Police Administration 3
CJS 3980 Technology and Criminal Justice 3
CJS 3990 Narcotics and the Police 3
CJS 4020 Court Structures and Functions 3
CJS 4160 Gangs and Deviant Social Groups 3
CJS 4500 Institutional Corrections 3
CJS 4520 Organized Crime 3
CJS 4560 Aggressive Behavior 3
CJS 4580 Profiling and Threat Assessment 3
CJS 4600 Community Corrections 3
CJS 4800 Theory of Law Enforcement 3
CJS 4810 Women, Crime and Justice 3
CJS 4820 Terrorism 3
CJS 4830 Family Violence: Spouse and Child Abuse 3
CJS 4840 Psychology, Psychiatry, and the Law 3
CJS 4850 Critical Issues in Criminal Justice 3
CJS 4870 Victimology 3
CJS 4880 Sex Crimes 3
CJS 4890 White Collar Crime 3
CJS 4900 Internship in Criminal Justice Studies 3
CJS 4950 Criminalistics 3
CJS 4990 Violence in the Workplace 3

Field Experience
The Criminal Justice Studies major may obtain field experience in two programs:

  • 1. Cooperative Education—planned paid experience in federal, state, and local law enforcement and correctional agencies as well as private security and campus police.
  • 2. Internship—students have a 180 hour supervised experience under the direction of a faculty member. (See CJS 4900.)

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