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Criminal Justice Studies

Bachelor of Arts
School of Sciences and Social Sciences

Criminology/Criminal Justice is a broad field of study that includes the contributions and approaches of many of the social and behavioral sciences, as well as areas of study such as law and ethics, as they relate to the phenomenon of crime. The Criminal Justice Studies major prepares students for employment in a wide variety of criminal justice agencies, under local, state and federal jurisdictions, as well as the private sector. This major can also serve as a foundation for graduate study in criminology, law, social work, sociology, psychology, and government including public administration.

The application process for admission to the Criminal Justice Studies Major should be initiated upon enrolling in CJS 240 Criminology. Students should meet with their Criminal Justice Studies faculty advisor and submit an "Application to the CJS Major" form. The review of applications and notification of the results of this review will be made at the start of the following semester. If a student is not accepted, they should schedule a consultation with their faculty advisor. During the conference, the student will be notified of any areas of deficiency that need to be addressed and will have an opportunity to retake courses once and/or improve their GPA. Students may only reapply after all deficiencies have been addressed. It should be noted that the minor in Criminal Justice Studies has no admissions criteria. Once admitted, the student must officially declare their major through a faculty advisor with a "Declaration of Major" form.

Admission Criteria

Overall GPA of 2.5 and an average of B or higher in both CJS 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice Studies and CJS 240 Criminology is required. For transfer students, equivalent transferred courses may be considered if approved by Criminal Justice Studies faculty.

Integrative Studies Requirements

40 credits minimum

Major Requirements

44 credits

Criminal Justice Studies Required Courses

28 credits

CJS 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice Studies
CJS 240 Criminology
CJS 330 Criminal Law and Procedure or POSC 316 Constitutional Law
CJS 342 Advanced Criminology
SOC 301 Sociological Research Methods
SOC 303 Sociological Quantitative Analysis

Select one of the following capstone courses:

  • CJS 461 White-Collar Crime
  • CJS 463 Law and Society
  • CJS 467/PSYC 467 Human Behavior and the Legal System
  • CJS 469 The Sociology of Punishment
  • CJS 471 Women and Crime
  • CJS 473 Race and Crime in the Media
  • CJS 490 Advanced Special Topics in Criminal Justice Studies

Criminal Justice Studies Elective Courses

16 credits minimum

Students must select Four (4) additional courses (or courses totaling 16 credits) from the CJS Elective Courses list. Two (2) of these courses must be at the 300 level or higher. Note that special topics courses may be available. Contact the Criminal Justice Studies coordinator for a list of qualified topics courses. Furthermore, the student should be aware that some of the courses listed below have prerequisites that must be met or waived by the instructor of record before they can be registered for the course.

Topics in Criminal Justice Studies

  • CJS 201 Corrections
  • CJS 290 Topics in Criminal Justice
  • CJS 310 Perspectives on U.S. Policing
  • CJS 320 Case Studies in Violence
  • CJS 352/SOC 352 Sociology of Deviance
  • CJS 365 Juvenile Delinquency
  • CJS 390 Studies in Criminal Justice
  • IHPHIL 220 Ethics

Courts, Law and Politics

  • CJS 340/WGS 340 Gender and the Law
  • HGS 313/PHIL 313 Philosophy and the Holocaust
  • ISPOSC 211 State and Local Poliitcs
  • PHIL 360 Philosophy of Law
  • SAFE 304/ENST 304 Environmental Law and Regulation

Topics in Sociology and Anthropology

  • ANTH 323 Anthropology of Conflict and Violence
  • ISSOC 310 Social Problems
  • SOC 325 Ethnic Relations
  • SOC 475 Social Stratification

Topics in Psychology and the Human Services

  • HLSC 200 Alcohol and Other Drugs: The Fundamentals
  • IIPSYC 350 When Harm is Done
  • PSYC 221 Social Psychology
  • SOC 234 Introduction to Social Work

Topics in Forensics

  • ANTH 332/CJS 332 Forensic Anthropology
  • INCHEM 201 Forensic Science


Select courses to reach a total of 120 credits for the degree.

Degree Requirements

120 credits