Online Criminal Justice Degree Programs

Criminal justice is a field with a wide range of degree programs, subject specialties and career opportunities--everything from FBI agents to private detectives to bailiffs. Students can pursue degree levels based on their career choice, with associates, bachelors, and masters in criminal justice being popular degrees in this field.

Kaplan University
AS in Criminal Justice
BS in Criminal Justice
MS in Criminal Justice

Kaplan University — Kaplan University is one of the largest accredited online colleges, and it offers a wide range of degree programs in the field of criminal justice. These programs include associates, bachelors, and masters in criminal justice, with possible specialties (depending on degree level) in Computer Crime, Law Enforcement, Corrections, Law, and Global Issues.
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Post University
AS in Legal Studies
BS in Legal Studies
BS in Criminal Justice
BSCJ in Human Services

Post University — Post University offers several Criminal Justice degrees online in addition to the campus program. These online courses are accredited and can be completed at a pace comfortable to you. More importantly, assignments can be turned in at any time before their deadline from any computer. This makes online degrees a great options for busy students. Post University has online degrees available for AS in Legal Studies, BS in Legal Studies, BS in Criminal Justice, and BSCJ in Human Services programs.
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Walden University
BSCJ in Psychology
BSCJ in Admin
MPA in Criminal Justice
PhD in Criminal Justice
PhD CJ in Human Services
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Walden University — Walden University is one of the largest providers of college education in the country. Walden takes a practical approach to education by developing curriculum that is industry-driven with assignments that engage students in their coursework. WU has several Criminal Justice degrees available, including BSCJ in Psychology or Administration, MPA in Criminal Justice, and PhD in Criminal Justice or Human Services.
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Liberty University
BS in Criminal Justice

Liberty University — Liberty University is an online university that prepares students for success in their careers following graduation. Liberty University offers two programs in the field, a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Criminal Justice, and a B.S. In Multidisciplinary Studies - Criminal Justice.
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Ashford University
BA in Criminal Justice
BACJ in Homeland Security
BACJ in Corrections Mgmt
BACJ in Forensics
BACJ in Government
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Ashford University — For students seeking a quick way to advance their careers or even start them, Ashford University has recently added several online programs in the field of Criminal Justice. Various bachelor degrees are available covering a wide range of specializations, including Criminal Justice, Homeland Security, Corrections Management, Forensics, and Government. AU is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission, 985 Atlantic Ave, Suite 100, Alameda, California 94501, 510.748.9001, www.wascsenior.org.
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Strayer University
AA in Criminal Justice
BSCJ in Comp. Security & Forensics
BSCJ in Criminal Justice Admin

Strayer University — Strayer University, a highly respected provider of online education, is backed by years of excellence in service to students and working with industry professionals to develop career-oriented curriculum. As a result, students gain key skills and knowledge needed to fulfill core competencies in Criminal Justice positions. SU has an AA in Criminal Justice, BSCJ in Computer Security & Forensics, and a BSCJ in Criminal Justice Administration.
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Saint Leo University
AA in Criminal Justice
BA in Criminal Justice
BACJ in Criminalistics
MS in Criminal Justice
MSCJ in Forensic Science
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Saint Leo University — For years, Saint Leo University has helped students across the county obtain Criminal Justice degrees through online programs. These programs cut many of the costs associated with campus programs and have the added benefit of being accessible from any computer. SLU has several degrees available including an Associates, Bachelors, and Masters in Criminal Justice as well as specialized programs for BACJ in Criminalistics and MSCJ in Forensic Science.
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Rasmussen College
AAS in Criminal Justice
BS in Criminal Justice
AS in Criminal Psychology
BS in Law Enforcement
BS in Homeland Security
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Rasmussen College — Rasmussen College has a huge selection of Criminal Justice programs available through online courses. RC offers a general Associates and Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice as well as associates degrees specializing in Criminal Psychology, Law Enforcement, Homeland Security, and Criminal Corrections. RC also has bachelors degrees specializing in Client Services, Homeland Security, Criminal Offenders, and Law Enforcement.
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Criminal Justice Degrees

A degree in criminal justice can lead you down a path to working in law enforcement or the government. Most people working in criminal justice have at least a bachelor’s degree, while high ranking officials almost always possess a masters degree. The criminal justice field has become widely popular due to television shows that chronicle an unrealistic yet exciting angle for working in law enforcement. It can be an exciting field, but you should also consider long hours, exhausting cases that go nowhere and working with uncooperative suspects and witnesses.

Studying for a degree in criminal justice, you will learn the technicalities of the law, communication skills, analytical and problem solving skills, and public policy. You will also learn criminology theories and how the criminal justice system works. There is a lot to learn when obtaining a criminal justice degree. You must be open-minded and fair when learning new material that may look at things from a different perspective. Currently criminal justice is focusing on computer security and technology. Those skilled to work in security utilizing the latest technology will have many more job opportunities than those without the tech skills.

What is the career outlook for someone working in criminal justice?

Those working in criminal justice are set for a 10% increase in the next decade, which is only slightly higher than the average growth for all industries. Those working with technology will experience more growth as law enforcement officials continue to find new ways to use computers and programs to their advantage when leading investigations. A background in psychology as well as criminal justice comes in useful when working with criminals and creating profiles for the police. All of this depend on which sector of criminal justice you want to work in.

According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, “employment of probation officers and correctional treatment specialists is projected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2018.” With excellent job prospects and earning potential in the next decade, a degree in criminal justice will pay off in the long run.

What jobs can I have with a degree in criminal justice?

There are many different career options in the criminal justice field. Depending on your area of interest, you can pursue a career as a police officer, detective, and many other in-demand professions. Criminal justice covers many aspects of law enforcement so whether you’re interested in working for the federal government, a private detective agency, or your city’s police department, a criminal justice degree will prepare you to assume these roles.

Police officer: Not all police officers in the U.S. require a degree, but sheriffs and police captains usually have a bachelors degree. Police officers must also attend a police academy in some counties and cities. Working as a police office can be a dangerous job if you are in a city with high crime rates. Police officers are now using technology more than ever before to do everything from a routine traffic stop to running fingerprints to find a suspect. Police officers should expect long hours and odd shifts, such as 9 p.m. – 4 a.m. It is also important to remember that some counties and cities are low on funding and resources which can result in cops working excessive hours. The average police officer earns about $40,000 per year.

Detective: A detective often serves as a police officer first, and often has a bachelors degree. Detectives are experts at communication. You must be comfortable working with people from all backgrounds. In the U.S. detectives who are fluent in Spanish are high in demand in cities with large Hispanic populations. Detectives also work long hours like police officers. Detectives also work weekends and sometimes holidays, depending on what they are working on. Detectives may also travel for work at a moment’s notice. Detectives earn about $60,000 per year and this can go up for lead detectives with proven track records.

Lawyer: A criminal justice degree is useful for lawyers because it allows you to see the scope of the justice system before entering law school. It also provides you with a solid foundation to build upon when attending law school. Studying for a criminal justice degree will teach you criminal theory and policies, while law school gives you hands-on training with cases and briefs. A criminal justice degree is not required to apply for law school, but it is a common degree for aspiring law students. Lawyers working in the criminal justice system work long hours on cases, so working holidays and weekends is the norm. In addition to law school, you must pass the bar exam to gain employment as a lawyer. Most lawyers are employed by a firm or self-employed. Lawyers typically earn about $75,000 per year and this number goes up in large cities working for a major law firm.

Private Investigator: Private investigators often have a law enforcement background. Sometimes they are ex-policemen or detectives and now have their own businesses investigating people. This prior experience working in law enforcement is what qualifies them to work as private investigators and offers peace of mind to clients. Private investigators are usually self-employed and take on clients from all walks of life. Working as a private investigator can be dangerous depending on the case. Private investigators deal with everything from examining financial and employment records to following people. Private investigators usually make great use of technology with GPS recording devices and other gadgets. Some private investigators have extensive experience with computer forensics work and some even possess a background in computer science. The salary for a private investigator can vary greatly, but the average is around $41,000.

Other careers of interest may include:

  • Counselors
  • Social and human service assistants
  • Social workers
  • Correctional officers
  • Firefighters

These careers and many others offer great opportunity for growth, compensation, and visibility. Graduates of criminal justice programs assume leadership and management roles in their communities. With an excellent career outlook, pursuing your degree now is a wise decision. Our list of accredited programs below will link you with valuable information about the degree of your choice.

Looking for a Criminal Justice Degree?

Fill out this short form below, and we'll help match you to an accredited college program that suits your interests, whether online- or campus-based.






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