United States Graduate Criminal Justice & Legal Studies Programs | Grad Schools
Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies programs offer a myriad of options for students exploring advanced degrees in fascinating areas that span criminalistics, criminology, forensic science, law enforcement, legal and paralegal studies and more! Whether you are oriented to researching the law, analyzing policy, investigating crime, understanding criminal behavior or protecting national security, there are a variety of Criminal Justice Graduate schools to choose from for your education. Studying on campus has some unique features that might suit the type of degree you are interested in, so read on to explore!
Graduate Criminal Justice & Legal Studies Program: Essentials
Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies Graduate Program has appeal whether you are looking for extra credentials and expertise to prepare you for specific career, advancement in a current field, or to address building a more comprehensive knowledge base. Many graduate certificate programs are geared as post-baccalaureate programs, so if you are coming straight from an undergraduate degree, you might choose that route or a Masters in Criminal Justice and Legal Studies Program. Doctorate degrees are also available, and in an array of tracks- often you can find PhD, PsyD and Doctor of Management programs. Knowing what type of degree you are seeking might help you find an appropriate Criminal Justice School, as they may be known for different specializations.
Criminal Justice & Legal Studies Programs: Find a Graduate School
GradSchools.com makes it easy to find Criminal Justice Schools to fit your needs. If you start by choosing your subject, then your degree level, you can then look into campus-based programs by location. There are settings for city, state and country that will each yield results to select from. Then you can visit the college or university’s site, request info and basically start refining your search process.
What are the potential advantages to studying on campus?
Access to facilities: In fact many graduate programs in Criminal Justice and Legal Studies actually involve some on-site work. In programs such as Forensic Science or Cybersecurity for instance, you might have to do some laboratory work, and being on campus means access to these facilities.
Learning in real-time: In programs where the focus is on law enforcement, management, or defense, there may be some programs that require the hands-on learning component that involves building interpersonal or leadership skills, so again, being at graduate school rather than on your computer may be beneficial.
Access: In terms of commuting, while you do have to ‘get to class’, many Criminal Justice colleges are factoring in the needs of their working professional students, with classes that may be scheduled evenings or weekends.
Interactions: Many students benefit from the social learning atmosphere and being able to meet their faculty and network with other students.
Choice: It may be harder to find online law degree programs that are accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). Also, as stated above, some graduate programs involve fieldwork, internship, or other involved practical experience beyond the classroom, so your choices in certain fields may be greater for campus-based learning than online. (You can gage this in your own search).
Accreditation: Accreditation for Criminal Justice Colleges is important. Also, some programs may be run from Business Schools, so accreditation is equally vital. Many graduate programs will actually not admit students from unaccredited schools. There are two basic types of accreditation: institutional and special, or program accreditation.
- Institutional accreditation is the most common- it means that the college or university is accredited as a whole (credibility!). There is national and regional accreditation.
- The other type of accreditation is program accreditation (endorsed by the United States Department of Education.)
What Type of Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies is right for you?
GradSchools.com has a great directory to help you find the program that aligns with your interests. Are you interested in law enforcement? Some programs might offer preparation to work as border patrol agent, crime scene investigator, FBI agent, federal air marshal, forensic engineer, fraud investigator, police officer, private detective, or surveillance officer.
Interested in behavior? Some programs blend sociology with criminal justice, (criminologist, criminalist, psychological profiler, penologist, or forensic psychologist).
Interested in Legal Studies and research? Law degree programs might prepare you to work as bailiffs, court reporters, judges, magistrates, lawyers, district attorneys, medical examiners, legal assistants, and paralegals.
Are you more interested in enforcing punishments against offenders? Try a program that might lead to working as corrections officers, correctional treatment specialists, probation officers, prison wardens, and substance abuse counselors in prisons.
Here is a mini-guide:
Criminal Justice and Criminalistics:
- Criminal Justice
- Criminal Psychology
Law Enforcement, Policing and Investigation
- Security Management
- Health Care law
- Intellectual Property Law
- International Law
- JD/Law Programs
- LLM’s –Masters of Law
Types of Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies Degrees
It is a good idea to verify what credentials are required for the specific career you have in mind. Sometimes an undergraduate degree is sufficient for entry-level positions, while other times a masters or PhD is preferred. Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies degrees are available in:
Masters programs, such as Master of Public Administration: Criminal Justice Concentration, Master of Arts in Criminal Justice, Master of Science in Management-Homeland Security and many other choices. While undergraduate degrees are generalized, most masters programs entail research and are more specialized.
Doctorate Programs, such as Doctorate of Management-Homeland Security, Juris Doctor (J.D.), Criminology PhD, and J.D./PhD program amongst others. These establish one’s expertise in their field.
Graduate Certificates, such as National Security Affairs Grad Certificate, Paralegal Studies program Certificate, or LL.M. in environmental and national Resources Law are designed as either post-masters or post-bachelor’s programs.
Ready for the next step?
Whether you are seeking a Graduate Criminal Justice and Legal Studies program near you or prefer to relocate, studying on a college campus may be an unparalleled experience to learn and grow amongst others with the same or similar goals. Why not take the next step and let GradSchools.com help you find the graduate school that aligns with your goals?
- Fairfield, CTFairfield, CT
Sacred Heart University
Master of Arts in Criminal Justice with concentrations in National Security, Criminal Justice Management and Victimology...
- Villanova, PAVillanova, PA
Cybersecurity addresses the critical need to secure and protect sensitive information...
- Paxton, MAPaxton, MA
Anna Maria College
The Master of Science in Criminal Justice program at Anna Maria College is designed to prepare professionals in criminal justice to take on leadership roles.
- Chicago, ILChicago, IL
Loyola University Chicago
Representing and advocating for children, families, women and the elderly is enhanced with an understanding of the psychological and social dynamics that characterize these populations.
- Chicago, IL
- Purchase, NYPurchase, NY
"We are connected globally, financially, and culturally. At Manhattanville, you will be too."...
- Manhattan, KSManhattan, KS
Kansas State University
The social justice education graduate certificate focuses on the principles of social justice education that promote equitable, sustainable and transformative change in various formal and non-formal educational settings.
- Washington, DCWashington, DC
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
- Washington, DC
- Los Angeles, CA
- Chicago, IL
- Chicago, ILChicago, IL
The MSL is the first degree to combine legal, regulatory, and policy topics into a curriculum that prepares students to influence and innovate within their respective STEM fields. Offered in on-campus and online formats. ...
- Tampa, FLTampa, FL
- Montgomery, AL
- Savannah, GA
- Columbia, SC
- Austin, TX
- Glen Allen, VA
- Colorado Springs, COColorado Springs, CO
Colorado Technical University
Colorado Technical University's Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MSCJ) degree program is designed for professionals seeking new opportunities in law enforcement, corrections and the court systems.
- Colorado Springs, CO
- Greenwood Village, CO
- Fort Lauderdale, FLFort Lauderdale, FL
Nova Southeastern University
National security affairs is one of the fastest growing professions with positions open in the public sector in the federal, state and local governments and in the private sector. This program is designed for professionals in the...
- Fort Lauderdale, FL
- Vincennes, INVincennes, IN
- Columbus, OHColumbus, OH
Ohio State University
The Moritz College of Law LL.M. Program is a 24 credit program for foreign lawyers that can be completed in nine months. The program integrates foreig...
- Columbus, OH
- Big Rapids, MIBig Rapids, MI
Ferris State University
The master of science degree in criminal justice Administration is designed to offer post-baccalaureate education to criminal justice professionals, a...
- Huntsville, TXHuntsville, TX
Sam Houston State University
The Doctor of Philosophy in Criminal Justice produces students of crime and justice who possess a deep and extensive awareness of the body of knowledge in the field of criminal justice and the intellectual and methodological skills.
- Huntsville, TX