Master in Criminal Justice (General)

every society has a set of agencies and institutions that enforce laws and maintain social control. the processes designed to regulate criminal law, reduce criminal activities, and sentence criminals is known as criminal justice. mitigating crime is important for maintaining peace and ensuring the security of the citizens. there are various law enforcement agencies that fall in the category of criminal justice. these include the police division, border patrol, department of homeland security, and more. the field of criminal justice is broad and dynamic. individuals can work on the front lines and offer services to the public, or even work in offices and pursue administrative careers. criminal justice careers are challenging in many ways. those who wish to play a role in protecting their fellow citizens from criminals can consider pursuing a career in criminal justice.

master in criminal justice
a master in criminal justice is a graduate program designed to provide students with in-depth knowledge about the broad discipline. the program can only be pursued after earning a bachelor’s degree. typically, it takes around two years to complete a master’s degree program. however, the exact duration will depend upon the school offering the program, and so can be shorter or longer.

while enrolled in this program, students will acquire a thorough understanding of the agencies working in the area of criminal justice, and their functioning. the program will shed light upon the modern-day issues of criminal law and criminal activities. students will gain insight on the various laws that govern matters in this area and what the main components of the criminal justice systems are. by the end of the program, student will be able to:

  • demonstrate advanced knowledge of public policy and criminology
  • show proficiency in research design and research analysis
  • carefully evaluate and analyze crime theories and policy-making
  • understand what skills are needed for careers in criminal justice

the curriculum usually covers theory-based courses. but some curriculums also entail research-oriented courses that help build effective research skills. students will cover many different areas such as criminology, criminal justice systems, crime causation, law enforcement, and leadership roles. the curriculum may vary a little from program to program. you can also opt for an online master of criminal justice if attending a campus-based college isn’t working out. online degree programs are more flexible and cost-friendly as compared to campus degrees. the curriculum of online and campus criminal justice programs is the same. it is only the mode of learning that is different.

career prospects
with a master’s degree in criminal justice, you can choose from a variety of challenging career opportunities in law enforcement agencies such as the police, department of homeland security, federal bureau of investigations, criminal justice courts and administration, and even investigations. each job position may require further training on-the-job or in an academy. criminal justice degrees are popular due to the many career options that can possibly be availed afterwards. the income level will vary from job to job. however, the 2012 median annual salary information for some major job positions available from the us bureau of labor statistics is as follows:

  • police officer - $56,980
  • probations officer - $48,190
  • corrections officer - $38,970


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