Starting a career in law enforcement, security, or a related field can be challenging. This is because most positions require professionals to have a thorough understanding of the law as well as the respective criminal procedures, and follow these regulations to the letter in their daily conduct. Fortunately, a bachelor degree in criminal justice will provide you with a suitable learning platform to begin your journey into this field and expose you to the essential concepts and issues that will help you further down the line.
What Does The Degree Entail?
A bachelor's degree in criminal justice is typically a four-year undergraduate degree offered by many universities and colleges across the United States. However, depending on the format, this degree can be completed in a shorter or longer period as well. In recent times, a number of accredited online institutions have also begun offering this degree to facilitate distance learning for individuals and increase the number of new entrants into the field. Broadly speaking, the aims of the degree are to:
Make students aware of the legal procedures that are in place for criminal processing
Teach students about the justice system functioning across the country
Help them develop the skills to conduct and interpret research related to crime or justice-related social problems
Train students on how to deal with people who have been victims or perpetrators of various crimes
Enhance their understanding of ethics within a criminal justice setting
Understand security and policy administration practices and their applications
A bachelor degree in criminal justice entails rigorous coursework and a combination of courses. Students will take courses in criminology, philosophy, writing, social sciences, and law to develop a holistic understanding of their country's judicial system and how one can navigate through it. The coursework is designed to make students diligent, compassionate yet direct communicators, and quick at processing different sources of information to develop coherent arguments.
Who Should Apply For This Degree?
Students interested in a career with the social services industry, or those who may want to work as police officers or assistants in criminal law firms will find a bachelor's degree in criminal justice most useful. The degree provides a solid foundation that students can use to pursue academic and professional opportunities. Students may choose to specialize in a particular area of criminal justice at a graduate level, allowing them to further their understanding and prepare themselves for more senior positions in the workplace. They may also gain professional experience by using their credentials for entry-level positions.
Graduates with a degree in criminal justice can work in protective services, administering security policy implementation. They can work for a local service, or, with the right combination of expertise and experience, may work their way up to working in one of the agencies of the Department of Homeland Security. They could also work in court administration or as legal aids, helping lawyers prepare cases according to the regulations. Some individuals also choose to specialize their learning towards the juvenile criminal justice system, and help those that are underage in their legal matters. Lastly, you could also work in social welfare settings such as crime shelters for women or drug and alcohol programs.