A Criminal Justice Online Degree to Advance Your Career

A Criminal Justice Online Degree to Advance Your Career

Is providing safety for others a major interest in your life? If so, a degree in criminal justice can qualify you for a large variety of occupations in local, state, national or international organizations or in the private sector. The best thing about it is that you can complete a degree entirely online.

An associate degree online will take about two or three years to complete, and can lead to entry level positions as law clerks, correctional officers, police officers, probation officers or security personnel.

A bachelor’s degree online will take four to five years to complete. It prepares students with the knowledge and the problem solving skills to take on the job duties for responsible positions in the criminal justice system. Career areas include law enforcement, corrections, homeland security, forensics, the courts and the private sector.

Graduate education degrees at the master’s and doctoral levels provide in-depth understanding of criminology and advanced criminal justice research and theory. Graduates will be engaged in problem solving to address, prevent and control crime including terrorism, white collar crime and organized criminal behavior. This level of knowledge and skill is needed for positions in the FBI or CIA, for advanced research and for teaching at the university level. The master’s degree will take two years to complete, and the PhD may take an additional three to five years.

Basic courses covered in Criminal Justice programs include

• Criminology
• Law enforcement operations and report writing
• Introduction to homeland security
• Juvenile delinquency
• Criminal law
• Criminal investigation
• Criminal evidence and legal issues
• Ethics in criminal justice
• Social psychology

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has listed the median annual salaries of different criminal justice occupations. The 2012 incomes listed for some of these are listed below. Ranges are given when information was available for entry levels to advanced levels.

• Police and patrol officers: $55,270
• Detectives and criminal investigators: $74,300
• Fish and game wardens $48,070
• Forensic science technician: $51,570
• Paralegal: $29,460- $74,870
• Probation officer: $30,920- $80,750
• Correctional officer: $26,040 – $67-250
• FBI Special agents: $45,771 – $93,175
• US Customs & Border Patrol: $27,431 – $78,355

It is unusual that a single degree can lead to so many careers. This makes a criminal justice online degree not only value for money, but value for time and value for effort as well.

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