The Criminal Justice major includes an overview of the criminal justice system including its three basic components: the police, courts, and corrections. Criminological theory and research examine criminal behavior and crime causation. The combination of criminal justice coursework and hands-on learning through internships prepares students for careers in law enforcement, the law or corrections or to pursue graduate and professional education.

Criminal justice is extremely attractive from an employment standpoint. “There are a lot of jobs out there right now,” Richard Buffington, Division of Science Chair and Director of the Criminal Justice Institute said, adding that “homeland security and terrorism are highly relevant issues in our society, and the need for trained professionals is paramount.”

Students completing a major in criminal justice will:

  • demonstrate knowledge of the criminal justice system including the core components of the police, the courts and corrections;
  • explicate crime and criminal behavior by examining criminological theories of crime causation;
  • demonstrate critical thinking skills by analyzing and discussing criminal justice issues;
  • demonstrate knowledge of research skills by writing scholarly papers on criminal justice topics;
  • connect substantive areas of academic coursework to real-life application in a criminal justice field through internships.