Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice – Degree Overview and Information


If you’re interested in working within the criminal justice industry, but aren’t sure what degree level is right for you, then you should investigate the offerings of a bachelor’s degree. While this level of training isn’t required for many careers within the criminal justice industry, obtaining such a degree can position you for upper level management positions as well as further solidify yourself as an expert and authority within the industry.

Although as Your Police Career and others points out, the specifics of a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice can vary based upon the training institution as well as the specializations you choose, there are several universal qualities that bleed throughout the United States. The following information is considered essential to help you further understand what’s to be expected during this four-year degree program.

Essential Information for Prospective Students

When you obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice, you’re gaining preparation to work as a professional within the criminal justice industry. Upon graduation, you’ll be given the opportunity to continue your studies via a graduate certificate or a Master’s degree. Within this program you’re often given an opportunity to intern within a business, organization or agency that resonates with your ultimate career goals.

To enroll in most Bachelor of Science criminal justice degree programs you must hold a minimum of a high school diploma or GED. If you’ve obtained an associate’s degree from an accredited community college or vocational school, you may be able to transfer your credits. Doing so can shorten the total number of semester hours you must complete to graduate. Like with many bachelor degree programs, it is possible to earn this degree online through distance learning programs.

Generally, this degree program offers various specializations. Students may choose to concentrate their studies within specific branches of the criminal justice industry, such as: legal process, juvenile justice, loss prevention, crime and justice, as we all as corrections – just to name a few.

The entire purpose of this degree program is to give you a broad understanding of the many aspects that make up the criminal justice system. While you’re able to select a concentration, the training is still on a broader sense. If you’d wish to expand your training within a specific concentration, then you may want to enroll in a graduate certificate program or a Master’s degree program upon graduation.

Common coursework within this bachelor’s degree program typically includes: security/police administration, juvenile justice system, gender in criminal justice, ethics in criminal justice and criminology.